National Park Service celebrates 100 years of caring for America’s legacy

Celebrating 100 years of education, conservation and inspiration, August 25th marks the centennial anniversary of the National Park Service (NPS) - get out and get into our National Parks


WASHINGTON, Aug. 16, 2016 —­ Marking 100 years of conservation achievement, the National Park Service (NPS) celebrates the 100th anniversary of its creation on Aug. 25, 1916. The NPS was created by Congress in 1916 as the government agency charged with preserving the historical integrity of America’s national monuments and parks. Its job is to maintain their natural beauty while allowing the public to visit, enjoy and be educated by them.

The National Park Service and National Park Foundation are working to ensure that the centennial is more than a calendar birthday. They encourage Americans and visitors to our country to explore, learn and be inspired by the hundreds of national parks, historic sites, seashores and monuments in the national park system.

The NPS wants visitors to know how its community-based recreation, conservation and historic preservation programs positively impact their own communities.

Visit the National Park’s website and pull down the EXPLORE tab to find a park near you, or a park you want to visit. While you are there, register for the National Parks Owners Guide that will help you explore virtually America’s greatest treasures near and far.

National Park Service web site screen shot
National Park Service web site screen shot

There is plenty there to find.

Across America, there are 59 national parks, 82 national monuments and 30 memorial sites that were enjoyed by more than 307 million visitors in 2015. This exceeded their highest previous attendance by some 14 million. You can find a national park by location with the NPS website Find A Park; enter a location to find a nearby park, or search by state or by one of 15 different types of park, such as a park that features rivers and lakes or battlefields and historical monuments.

The National Park Service anniversary is a great time to take a late summer “staycation” and explore your own backyard.

In Washington, D.C., there are over 150 major named historic parks, squares, circles and triangles and 80 historic structures to visit. One partner to the NPS centennial is Hilton Hotel, which offers guests an NPS Centennial package that lets you start your day steps from some of America’s greatest memorials.

Walk the National Mall that stretches from the Lincoln Memorial to the U.S. Capitol Building. Along the way visit the Smithsonian museums and more than 150 historic sites, including the Jefferson Memorial, World War II Memorial and Washington Monument.

Another way to explore D.C. is through one of the hop-on-hop-off sightseeing tours offered by groups like Viator.  Local volunteer organizations, small businesses and large groups, like Hilton properties, all work to support America’s national parks.

Fans of the parks are welcome to join Hilton hotel team members for the official 100th anniversary of the National Park Service celebration on Aug. 25 from 9 a.m. to noon .   

“National Mall and Memorial Parks could not do our jobs without the huge amounts of support provided by our partners,” says Robin Nixon, chief of partnerships.  “Local community organizations, corporations and other businesses help us maintain both the National Mall and our small ‘uptown’ parks that are scattered throughout the city.  Our partners raise funds for repair and beautification projects, volunteer time to help maintain parks, and contribute significantly to visitor education and enjoyment.”

Guests staying at Hilton properties will be sent off on their park exploration with a house-made granola snack pack, two bottles of water, a tote bag, gloves and activity guide. See the National Mall.Visit Find Your Park DC for more information. The Hilton family of hotels in the Washington, D.C., area will make a donation of $5 to the National Mall and Memorial Parks for every Find Your Park reservation through Sept. 6, up to $20,000.

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