• A painting of Hetch Hetchy Valley in 1870, before the area was flooded and dammed. Art by Albert Bierstadt.

    The ‘Outrageous Evil’ That Led to the Birth of the National Park Service

    Today, the National Park Service celebrates its 99th birthday. Establishing an agency dedicated to the care of America’s national parks is one of our country’s most visionary accomplishments. The lands and landmarks our park rangers protect are among the world’s greatest wonders. Long before families loaded up station wagons to head to places like Grand […]

  • A star party at Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. NPS photo by Mike Shaw.

    Parks after Dark: 9 Ideas for Nighttime Fun

    Summer nights may be short, but national parks often host extra activities to educate and entertain visitors during this popular tourist season, including more fun things to do after dark. Whether you’re exploring on your own or hanging out with a ranger, try a few of these excuses to stay out late in special places. […]

  • Paddling at Gateway National Recreation Area in New York. Photo © Michael Falco.

    On the Eve of the National Parks’ Centennial, We Must All Work to Make Parks More Diverse

    Next year marks the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service. I cannot imagine a world without the beauty these spaces offer us. We have inherited these remarkable places from those who came before us, those who saw the need to honor the history that is represented at public lands like the Statue of Liberty, […]

  • Raegan King at the new Waco Mammoth National Monument. Photograph courtesy of the Wacoan, © 2015. Chelsea Santos, photographer.

    Meet the Woman behind Waco Mammoth

    Today, President Obama designated America’s newest national park site at Waco Mammoth, preserving a trove of exceptional Ice Age fossils in Waco, Texas. Unlike many other brand-new parks, Waco Mammoth National Monument is already an established educational facility and a jewel of the community. For years, researchers and schoolkids alike have been getting a glimpse […]

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