National Parks: Get in Free This Weekend

From National Park Service
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Park Service’s
third entrance fee free weekend of the summer is August 15-16. All 391
national parks across the nation will offer free admission to all
visitors.

“America’s national parks have always been popular vacation spots,”
said Acting National Park Service Director Dan Wenk. “The fee free
weekends were launched in June as a way to provide opportunities for
everyone to visit national parks in these economically challenging
times. Whether you can stay for just a few hours or the whole weekend,
we hope you’ll take advantage of the free admission and come out and
experience your national parks.”

To plan a park visit or check out promotions offered this weekend
by park partners who operate tours, hotels, restaurants, and gift shops,
look online at http://www.nps.gov/findapark/feefreeparks.htm.

Visitation to national parks is up more than three percent from
this time last year. The national parks have hosted almost 200 million
visitors so far this year.

This weekend and all month long, special events in national parks
include festivals, historical encampments, concerts, star gazing
gatherings, bike tours, nature walks, and a coral reef recovery project.

For a list of family fun activities, visit http://www.nps.gov/pub_aff/parks2009/index.htm.

If you take some great photos of your visit to a national park,
think about entering the annual Share the Experience Photo Contest.
Through Dec. 31, amateurs can submit up to three photographs of scenes
from national parks or other federal lands. Prizes include Olympus
digital cameras, trips to federal recreation areas, and Federal
Recreation Lands Passes. The winning image will be featured on the 2011
Annual Federal Recreation Pass. Details are available at www.sharetheexperience.org.

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