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Making the Most of National Park Week

April 18, 2016 |

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National Park Week 2016

This year, the National Park Service is turning 100 years old! To celebrate their centennial anniversary, they’re offering free admission to all national parks during National Park Week from April 16th through 24th. The theme for 2016 is “Find Your Park,” which encourages folks to find parks in their area, share stories through social media, and support national parks by contributing, connecting, and volunteering.

We’ve compiled a list of official events, plus more ways you can get involved. With over 400 parks available all over the country, there’s no shortage of ways to get outdoors and celebrate America the beautiful.

Earth Day: This Friday brings something more exciting than just the start of the weekend. Earth Day is this Friday, April 22, and what better way to celebrate than lending a hand at a national park? Volunteering is a great way to spend time with family and teach children the value of giving back. Plus, there are a ton of different ways to make a commitment to the environment through the National Park Service. Read up on the organization’s many opportunities that are available to suit all types of interests.

National Park Instameet: Instagram meetups have become extremely popular around the world since the creation of the photo-sharing app. On Saturday, April 23rd, use the hashtags #FindYourPark or #EncuentraTuParque to find a national park Instameet near you.

Park Rx Day: Sunday, April 24th, parks will host the first ever Park Rx Days across the country. The idea is to promote healthy activities and highlight the healing factor of nature on the human mind and body. The  NPS encourages people to get outdoors in a national park and experience the healing powers of the outdoors. You can continue to use parks as a go-to resource for overall well-being, too! Just check out the Healhty Parks Healthy People US program.

Take a Trip: You don’t have to stick to parks nearby to celebrate our wonderful lands. Pack up, gear up, and take off for a completely new experience. National Park Week is a great opportunity to travel. With no admission fees all week, that’s one less traveling expense. Here’s a list of travel ideas compiled by the National Park Foundation to suit any traveler’s taste.

Whether or not you plan on traveling this weekend, here’s an interactive map of all the national parks that makes it easy to find one nearby or far away. The National Park Service has also compiled a full list of registered events happening throughout National Park Week. So get out there and find your park, and, of course, don’t forget to play!

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