It’s National Parks Week, and it starts this weekend with free Admission at all National Parks across the U.S. starting on Saturday April 15th. DPTV’s Great Lakes Bureau’s Mary Ellen Geist talked with spokesperson with the National Park Service in Washington D.C. Tom Crosson.
GLB: What is the mission of National Parks Week?
TC: Starting on April 15th we are kicking off National Park Week. It’s a special week full of programs and opportunities for folks to go out and explore their national parks. All 417 National Parks across the system are free. We just want people to come on out and explore a new area and get to know their National Parks.
GLB: When people think of National Parks, they often think of famous mountains and stone formations out West, not the Great Lakes.
The Great Lakes have beautiful properties like the Indiana Dunes National Park, Sleeping Bear Dunes and Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore along Lake Superior. Those are just a few examples. We want people to come and maybe visit a park they haven’t been to before and they haven’t considered. We have 417 properties! We have plenty out there. Some are lesser known. Everyone hears about the Grand Canyon and Yellowstone and Yosemite. Those are just three! But many people don’t know about the National Parks throughout the Great Lakes Region. You might be surprised! It’s worth the trip.
GLB: The National Parks just celebrated a major milestone…..
TC: The National Parks were created more than one hundred years ago to preserve and protect these beautiful resources for the enjoyment of future generations. That’s really the core of our mission. We do our best. We have more than 20,000
passionate employees who are doing miraculous things to strike that balance between being able to visit and enjoy these icons, while preserving and maintaining them, and protecting them from whatever threatens them.
To find out the National Park that is nearest to you, go to The National Park website at https://www.nationalparks.org/explore-parks and enter your city or zipcode.