On August 25, 2016, the National Park Service (NPS) will celebrate its 100th birthday. To celebrate 100 years of stewardship, our goal is to connect with and create the next generation of park visitors, supporters, and advocates. Programs and events at Gettysburg National Military Park (GETT), Eisenhower National Historic Site (EISE) and all the national parks will reach out to engage new audiences, teachers, students, and youth.
At Gettysburg, we put our heads together and here are some of the activities we are talking about. The Centennial theme is “Find Your Park” and it was launched at media events today in New York City. Find Your Park is a movement. Everyone is invited. We’ll know we’re succeeding when the public starts to pick up the spirit of the movement and inspire others.
Let us know what you think of these ideas and go to the Find Your Park website to learn more and share your stories.
Arts in the Parks Residencies – Working with the National Parks Arts Foundation, Gettysburg National Military Park (GETT) has established three, one-month residencies. The artists will be selected by National Parks Arts Foundation’s curators and advisors, and will use their residencies in one of the historic houses on the Gettysburg battlefield to create artwork inspired by the historic landscapes, over one thousand memorials and monuments and the Soldiers’ National Cemetery. June – August 2015. NPS Call to Action #10 Arts Afire.
Creating a New Lincoln – Monument specialists at Gettysburg National Military Park and the NPS Historic Preservation Training Center will be working in Gettysburg to prepare for the casting of a new life-sized bronze statue of a standing Abraham Lincoln for the Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site. A 1965 plaster cast of an original, Augustus Saint-Gaudens sculpture will be conserved and then used to create a new 12 foot tall statue of Lincoln. The work will be done in Gettysburg throughout the spring and summer months, and the sculpture will be completed and shipped to Saint-Gaudens’ home and studios in Cornish, New Hampshire, in time for a September 2015 ribbon cutting to commemorate the park’s 50th birthday. April through September 2015. NPS Call to Action #10 Arts Afire
Healthy Adams County/Wellness Walks – Gettysburg National Military Park is hosting community wellness walks on the battlefield to improve health and wellness. Spring and Fall 2015. NPS Call to Action #6 Take a Hike. Call Me in the Morning
Parks in your Classroom – Gettysburg and Eisenhower Park Rangers will present programs in regional schools about the NPS, careers in parks, and the 100th birthday. We are also seeking funding opportunities to create virtual field trips; host school Administrator days; and provide special family programming, improved Junior Ranger activities and service projects. Fall 2015 through Spring 2016. NPS Call to Action #3 History Lesson
New Recruits: Memberships for Millennials – The Gettysburg Foundation will be developing and launching a new membership level for the Friends of Gettysburg. The new “Recruit” level will be for ages 18 – 38. In addition, we’ll engage with community groups, young professionals and others to improve engagement in park programs and preservation. Fall 2015. NPS Call to Action #29 Posterity Partners.
We’ll post updates about these and other events as we continue our planning. Join us in the movement. Go out and Find Your Park!
Katie Lawhon, Management Assistant, April 2, 2015