That includes more than 100 sites with special ties to the US military, including Revolutionary and Civil War sites and those related to US presidents.
There also is special programming at many of the sites.
U.S. military veterans and Gold Star Family members
can obtain a free, lifetime entrance pass
to all of the country’s national parks.
Current military members and their dependents
are eligible for a free annual pass.
There are more than 100 national parks with strong ties to the U.S. military, including battlefields that recall bravery, monuments that stir patriotism, memorials that remember sacrifice, terrain that provided training grounds, and scenic areas that were set aside for relaxation and recreation. Many of them will hold special events on Veterans Day, including:
- Tour a WWII Military Bunker and Searchlight Shelter at Cabrillo National Monument.
- Living History Day with 18th century American Militia and Weapons Firing Demonstrations at Cowpens National Battlefield.
- Free Guided House Tours at Eisenhower National Historic Site.
- Free Lighthouse Tours for Veterans at Fire Island National Seashore.
- “War’s Over!”: Armistice Day and the Origins of Veterans Day at Fort McHenry National Monument and Shrine.
- Military Living History Timeline and Demonstrations at Fort Necessity National Battlefield.
- Veterans Day Living History Event at Fort Pulaski National Monument.
- Artillery Demonstrations at Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park.
- Poplar Grove National Cemetery Luminary at Petersburg National Battlefield.
- Free Bus Tours for Veterans of Shiloh National Military Park.
“National parks are the living memory of our nation, the conscience of America, and many of them have direct relevance to the U.S. military and the sacrifices of those who served,” said National Park Service Director Chuck Sams. “Visits to national parks while I was a young sailor in the Navy were incredibly meaningful and formative. Seeing treasured natural and cultural landmarks firsthand connected me to our country’s shared history and provided inspiration to serve and defend.”
Additional ways to observe Veterans Day include:
- Spend time in a national park on the last entrance fee-free day of 2023. With more than 400 national parks across the country, and at least one in every state, parks are often closer than people realize.
- With eligible photo identification, obtaining a free military pass. Current members of the military and their dependents are eligible for free annual park passes. Veterans and Gold Star Family members can acquire a free lifetime pass. The passes provide free admission to more than 2,000 national parks, wildlife refuges, national forests, and other federal recreational areas. Other free or discounted passes are available for persons with permanent disabilities, fourth grade students, volunteers, and senior citizens who are 62 years or older.
- Tour a national park dedicated to a notable person who also served in the military, such as Jimmy Carter, César Chávez, Medgar Evers, Abraham Lincoln, Charles Pinckney, Edgar Allan Poe, Theodore Roosevelt, Carl Sandburg, Harry S Truman, or Harriet Tubman.
- Visiting the NPS American Military website which provides information about additional events and military-related connections to national parks, including profiles of NPS employees and volunteers who are veterans.
- Uncover untold stories about our country’s first veterans by participating in the Revolutionary War Pension Transcription Project. This joint effort between the NPS and the National Archives invites public volunteers to transcribe handwritten, first-hand accounts of the American Revolution. The transcriptions will become a permanent part of the historical record at the National Archives and will help researchers and the public learn more about these early Americans and the times in which they lived.
- Plann a park trip using the interactive map on NPS.gov that highlights national parks near Department of Defense and Veterans Administration facilities nationwide, making it easier than ever for veterans, service members, their families, and caregivers to find recreational opportunities that support physical, social, mental, and spiritual fitness.
History of Veterans Day
On Nov. 11, 1919, Armistice Day was established to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the end of World War I, which occurred on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918. Armistice Day was changed to Veterans Day in 1954 and is an annual observance that honors the service of all U.S. military veterans.
About the National Park Service
More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 425 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov, and on social media.
ecoXplorer Evelyn Kanter is a journalist with 20+ years of experience as a newspaper and magazine writer, radio & TV news producer & reporter, and author of guidebooks and smartphone apps – all focusing on travel, automotive, the environment and your rights as a consumer.
ecoXplorer Evelyn Kanter currently serves as President of the International Motor Press Assn. (IMPA), a former Board Member of the Society of American Travel Writers (SATW) and a current member of the North American Travel Journalists Assn. (NATJA) and the North American Snowsports Journalists Assn. (NASJA).
Contact me at email@example.com.
Copyright (C) Evelyn Kanter