Parks in the News

Post-Inauguration Facts and Figures from the NPS – but Don't Expect a Crowd Estimate

Crowd at the 2008 Inauguration.
The Big Day on the National Mall has come and gone, thankfully without major incidents. The National Park Service has compiled a few behind-the-scenes facts and figures, but contrary to published reports, there won't be an official estimate of the crowd from that agency.

Secretary Salazar Mulls Reopening Top of Statue of Liberty

Is it time to reopen Miss Liberty's crown to the general public? Interior Secretary Ken Salazar thinks so.

A Major Overhaul at Ford's Theatre National Historic Site Raises a Few Eyebrows

Ford's Theatre.
Ford's Theatre National Historic Site in Washington, D.C. is completing major renovations just in time for the celebration of the Lincoln Bicentennial next month. Part of an ambitious $50 million project to create an expanded "Lincoln Campus," the scope of the work has raised eyebrows among some history buffs.

Interior Secretary Salazar Uses the "S" Word On Second Day at the Office

Well, they're tossing the "s" word around at Interior again. You know, the "s" word. "Science." Let's see if they pay closer attention to it than the old administration.

Don't Try this At Home: Driver's Life Saved By Vegetation and Ledge at Colorado National Monument

Every now and then, you have to thank your lucky stars. That, no doubt, is what's going through the mind of a Colorado man who narrowly avoided serious injury, if not certain death, at Colorado National Monument.

Freeze On New Regs Could Impact Efforts to Expand Mountain Biking in National Parks

A freeze on new regulations proposed in the waning days of the Bush administration puts in limbo a number of rules and actions that affect national parks. One pending rule, for instance, could expand mountain biking in the parks.

Fatal Glider Crash at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Additional details are becoming available about the recent tragic crash of a glider at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

National Park Foundation Loses Its Honorary Chairperson

The departure of George and Laura Bush from Washington left a hole at the top of the National Park Foundation. Laura Bush, you see, had been its honorary chairperson.

Wanted: National Park Service Director

The change in administrations has created an opening for a new director of the National Park Service. Mary Bomar officially ended her tenure at the top on Tuesday, and one of her deputies, Dan Wenk, is holding down the job on an acting basis.

National Parks and the Inauguration of President Obama

While national parks weren't mentioned by President Barack Obama in his inaugural speech today, it could be said that they actually weren't too far out of mind during the first day of 44's tenure.

Change.gov and the National Park System Under the Obama Administration

The Obama administration has promised change, and has been soliciting ideas from around the country on how best to provide that change. When it comes to the National Park System, does the new administration have an agenda?
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After the Inauguration ... Next Up, the Lincoln Bicentennial

There's no rest for the weary—especially if they're involved in planning and managing special events in the nation's capital. With the inauguration behind us later today, those folks can now focus on the Lincoln Bicentennial, and there will be plenty to do at a number of NPS sites, in and outside of Washington. D.C.

Update: Deal Seems to Clear The Way For Construction of the Flight 93 Memorial

Land acquisition snags, private fund-raising shortfalls, and related problems long have plagued efforts to build the Flight 93 Memorial. But agreement finally has been reached between all parties on a deal that seems to clear the way for the project to move forward.

Glacier Bay National Park Issues New Cruise Ship Contracts

Officials at Glacier Bay National Park have signed off on a small set of 10-year contracts for cruise ship operations. Is that a good thing?

Sen. Salazar Sails Through Confirmation Hearing

The Obama administration's nominee for Interior secretary, U.S. Senator Ken Salazar, today sailed through his confirmation hearing. Along the way he spoke of supporting an economic stimulus package for the national parks.

Friends of Big Bend Land Grant to Help Fund New Orientation Film

Every little bit helps, particularly in these challenging times. Just ask the folks at Friends of Big Bend, who just received an $8,000 grant to help pay for a new orientation film for Big Bend National Park.

Why On Earth Would Anybody Want to Do That?

At War in The Pacific National Historical Park, vandals and thieves have desecrated memorials erected in honor of the more than 16,000 Chamorros and American servicemen who suffered and died on Guam during World War II.

Those Dogs Could Hunt! But Not in Glacier National Park

In the case at hand, the dogs could hunt. They just didn't know they weren't supposed to go into Glacier National Park in their pursuit of mountain lions.

Yellowstone National Park: Poster Child For Goofy Gun Laws

For all, including Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne, who thought the rules change concerning carrying concealed weapons in national parks would simplify life, Yellowstone National Park is proving the case of some of what's wrong with that rule change.

Echoes of the Cold War in the Tropical Warmth of Everglades National Park

Former missle base in Everglades NP.
For most people, the name Everglades National Park conjures up a variety of mental images: alligators, birds and other wildlife; tropical swamps and a "River of Grass." The Everglades may not immediately bring to mind a historical site from the Cold War, but that's the latest visitor attraction at the Florida park.

Second Round of National Park Service "Centennial Projects" Produces $27 Million Worth of Improvements

Rehabilitation projects, invasive species eradication and biodiversity research were among the $27 million worth of Centennial Initiative projects for the National Park System announced Tuesday by Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne and NPS Director Mary Bomar.
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Commentary: What Would An Economic Stimulus Package for the National Parks Buy Us?

Mug House, Mesa Verde National Park, Kurt Repanshek photo.
Ever since the phrase "economic stimulus" was launched last year, there seems to have been more and more clamoring for these kinds of bailouts, or incentives, or infusions of capital, or whatever you want to call them. Conservation groups haven't been silent in this arena, either.

Yellowstone National Park's Wolf Population Down More than 25 Percent

Disease and infighting are being blamed for a drop of more than 25 percent in the wolf population of Yellowstone National Park.

Forget the Camp, Send Your Kid to Yellowstone National Park This Summer

Want to help your kids fight nature deficit disorder? If they're old enough, have them apply to the Yellowstone Youth Conservation Corps for a summer job this year.

University Researchers Suggest Solution To Yellowstone National Park's Bison Problem

It's been relatively quiet so far this winter on the front lines of the battle over Yellowstone National Park's bison and their migratory desires. While various groups continue to search for a long-standing solution to this dilemma, some researchers at the University of California, Santa Cruz, believe they have the most cost-effective answer.

What Priorities Should The Next National Park Service Director Address?

Kurt Repanshek photo.
Yellowstone snowmobiles. Guns in the parks. Climate change. Infrastructure in shambles. These are just some of the issues the next director of the National Park Service will inherit. But how should he or she prioritize their approach to managing the National Park System and addressing its problems?

Colorado Man Dies While Snowshoeing in Rocky Mountain National Park

A 55-year-old Colorado man out snowshoeing with his family Saturday in Rocky Mountain National Park collapsed and died on the Longs Peak Trail.

Deadly Threats You Never Heard of Lurk in Our National Parks

Some deadly diseases you’ve never heard of lurk in our national parks. It's extremely unlikely that you'll ever be infected, but the odds are not zero. And if you are among of the unfortunate few, may the Good Lord have mercy on you.

Judge Plans to Hear Arguments on Gun Rules for National Park

A federal judge is working on a schedule to hear arguments on the Bush administration's decision to allow national park visitors to carry concealed weapons. With no injunction in sight, that means park managers across the nation should be taking down their "no guns allowed" signs today.

Fake USGS Site Urges Evacuation of Yellowstone National Park

It's big, it's bad, but it's not gonna blow. That's what the USGS is saying to counter a fake website that's calling for evacuation of Yellowstone National Park and surrounding areas due to an impending eruption.
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