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The latest news from around the National Park System.

Art in the Desert – Joshua Tree National Park Hosts 18th Annual Art Festival April 2-4

Parks have long provided places of inspiration for artists, and for nearly two decades, Joshua Tree National Park has hosted an annual art festival to highlight work featuring that area's dramatic desert landscapes. The 2010 Art Festival will be held at the park April 2-4.
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National Park Service, Student Conservation Association Looking for Help Improving Visitor Safety

Better understanding risks in national parks, and how visitors relate to those risks, in theory can lower the number of injuries those visitors incur. That's why the National Park Service and the Student Conservation Association are studying park visitors.
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Creature Feature: The Banana Slug is Living Proof that a Slimy Little Gastropod Mollusk Can be Loaded with Charisma

You’d think that a mucus-covered, shell-less, forest-dwelling gastropod whose diet includes animal droppings couldn’t get much love, but the lowly banana slug has acquired a huge fan following. Among other things, it is the star of a community festival, official state mollusk of California, and one of America’s most beloved sports mascots.
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Traveler's Tips for a Spring Break Visit to Big Bend National Park

The annual travel rite known as "Spring Break" isn't limited to students headed for the beach—it's also peak season for Big Bend National Park. Is that park is too crowded to enjoy a visit in March? Here are some observations from the Traveler, along with tips to help make a future spring trip to Big Bend a lot more fun.
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Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park Officials Want To Replace Three Backcountry Cabins Located in Wilderness Areas

Officials in Sequoia and Kings Canyon national parks want to replace three dilapidated backcountry ranger cabins, which, judging from photos, seems like a reasonable decision. But should they be allowed to use power tools in the wilderness settings to get the work done?
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Sen. McCain Has Proposal For Air Tours Over Grand Canyon National Park, But is It A Good One?

During the run-up to the 2008 presidential election, Senator John McCain of Arizona was applauded by many as a friend of the national parks. However, some groups are now wondering why the senator is supporting legislation that would increase air tours over Grand Canyon National Park, an experience that offers many incredible views of the park and yet one that others criticize for the noisy intrusion on the park setting.
Image icon McCain Overflights Amendment.pdf
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By the Numbers: Shenandoah National Park

Two-thirds of America’s population lives within a day’s drive of Shenandoah National Park, which is located in Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains just 75 miles west of Washington, DC. Made automobile-convenient by a venerable parkway that winds through its forested mountains, Shenandoah is a recreational cornucopia and a sightseer’s delight.
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National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide