Happy birthday National Park Service!
Happy 96th birthday to the National Park Service, and a thank you to the more than 20,000 men and women who keep our 397 national parks running.
Created on August 25, 1916 by President Woodrow Wilson, the National Park Service came into being 44 years after the first national park, Yellowstone. Before then, the parks were under the management of the U.S. Army.
This summer, my wife and I toured the incredible Glacier (pictured), Yellowstone, and Grand Teton parks. On the ranger-led tours, we found our guides to have a great sense of humor and supreme patience. Their extensive knowledge added immensely to our enjoyment and understanding of these unique environments.
Texas has 13 national parks, 7 national forests and grasslands, 20 national natural landmarks, and 46 national historic landmarks. The largest national parks in the state are Big Bend, Sam Houston National Forest, Davy Crockett National Forest, and Sabine National Forest. The closest National Park Service properties to Austin are the Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park and the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park. Drop by and say happy birthday.
For more information on the parks and special birthday events, go to www.nps.gov. Coming up, National Public Lands Day, Sept. 29, is a fee-free entrance day at many federal public lands, including national parks. To locate an NPLD event, go to www.publiclandsday.org/npld-sites.
1,099th in a series. Collect them all. Day Trips, Vol. 2, a book of "Day Trips," is available for $8.95, plus $3.05 for shipping, handling, and tax. Mail to: Day Trips, PO Box 33284, South Austin, TX 78704.