The National Parks System has become known as America’s best invention. Few other countries can boast such a pervasive collection of open space, natural beauty and historic preservation, accessible to all citizens. Every state (but Delaware) has presence in the National Park Service. Throughout the year, the NPS has graciously offered various days of free admission, and the last such day in 2010 will be on November 11. In honor of veterans, the parks are opening their gates to everyone as a thank you to the current and former servicemen for keeping our country safe.
With nearly 400 parks nationwide, the parks offer something for everyone, whether you are a history buff, hiker, or picnicker. In Colorado, the Rocky Mountain Park is glorious and diverse with both rugged trails and easy hikes. A particular favorite is Niagara Falls, which has long been an intriguing source of ‘making nature more beautiful,’ a delightful oxymoron. Hawaii boasts eight National Parks, steeped in beauty with several involving volcanoes. Perhaps, the most appropriate visit would be to the Theodore Roosevelt National Park, located in the badlands of western North Dakota. Named after the nation’s leader, this park honors President Roosevelt who actively helped launch the vision of preserving open spaces for the public.
At any time of year, the National Parks offer myriad delights, so get out there and enjoy this natural heritage.