Thursday, January 7, 2016

Aloha to National Parks - Happy 100th Anniversary!


The National Park Service is celebrating its 100th Anniversary in 2016.   From Wikipedia (link),

National parks and national monuments in the United States were originally individually managed under the auspices of the Department of the Interior. The movement for an independent agency to oversee these federal lands was spearheaded by business magnate and conservationist Stephen Mather, as well as J. Horace McFarland. With the help of journalist Robert Sterling Yard, Mather ran a publicity campaign for the Department of the Interior. They wrote numerous articles that praised the scenic and historic qualities of the parks and their possibilities for educational, inspirational, and recreational benefits.  This campaign resulted in the creation of a National Park Service. On August 25, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed a bill that mandated the agency "to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and wildlife therein, and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations." Mather became the first director of the newly formed NPS.

Everglades National Park
Public Domain (link)

National Parks have touched my life.  I grew up in Miami and enjoyed weekend getaways to the Everglades National Park (link).   I learned about our colonial history when I was assigned to Hanscom Air Force Base, outside Boston, by visiting the Minute Man National Historical Park (link).  In fact, my "farewell" plaque from Hanscom includes the famous Minute Man Statue.   Now that I live near Baltimore, my family takes pride in Fort McHenry, home of the Star Spangled Banner (link).    

The Minuteman guarding the North Bridge
Concord, MA

The Star Spangled Banner may be our National Anthem, but America the Beautiful is a song of our heart.  Yes, America is beautiful, especially in this Youtube Video (link) from the National Park Service - nature is our national treasure.

Next week I'll be away in Florida ... so I will share pictures from my favorite National Parks in another sunshine state, Hawaii!

Do you have a favorite national park, monument, or historical site?  Or one that you would like to visit?  One randomly selected commenter from this week's blog posts wins a book choice from my convention stash.  Comments are open through Saturday, January 9, 10 pm in Baltimore.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, January 10.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Park ranges dress as WWI soldiers
at Fort McHenry


  1. We've got the Parks on our travel plans for this year. Just have to decide which one(s)!

  2. This is really embarrassing for me to admit, but I've never been to one. What's even worse, is that my husband works for Everglades National Park in Homestead maintaining all their communications.

  3. I do believe while on a trip to AZ we visited some but it's been so long ago I am fuzzy on details.

  4. My favorites include Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and Grand Canyon National Park. I hope to visit Yosemite someday.

  5. Great information! I have always wanted to visit Yosemite National Park.

  6. I have several favorite parks _ Yellowstone, Grand Canyon and Yosemite.

  7. I have only visited the Grand Canyon. Hope I get the chance to see others.

  8. I thought Bryce Canyon in Utah was really neat - also Volcanoes National Park in Hawaii - both are like other worlds.

  9. I like Yosemite

  10. I've always loved going to Sequoia.