National Park Week, April 16 to 24, 2016, is America's largest celebration of national heritage. It's about making great connections, exploring amazing places, discovering open spaces, enjoying affordable vacations, and enhancing America’s best idea—the national parks! It's all happening in your national parks.
The National Park Service is once again partnering with the National Park Foundation, the official charity of America's national parks, to present National Park Week, a presidentially proclaimed celebration of our national heritage.
In addition to the 51 National Park locations (see list below) in the Chesapeake region, here are some highlights during National Park Week:
Don't forget to check out www.nationalparkweek.org. There you can share your national park photos, videos, and tips. While you're there, learn all about the ways you can help support your national parks all year round.
The first railroad to circumvent the Allegheny Mountains, the Allegheny Portage Railroad was the finishing piece of the Pennsylvania Mainline Canal. "The Portage" provided a direct route between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.
Anacostia Park provides open space and recreation along 5 miles of the Anacostia River in the Nation's capital. It includes trails, boat launches, picnic areas, a swimming pool, a pavilion and Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens.
Antietam National Battlefield commemorates the American Civil War Battle of Antietam that occurred on September 17, 1862 and includes a visitor center, a national military cemetery and a field hospital museum.
The Appalachian Trail is one of the longest continuously marked footpaths in the world, measuring roughly 2,180 miles in length. The Trail goes through fourteen states along the crests and valleys of the Appalachian mountain range from Georgia to Maine.
Appomattox Court House National Historical Park is comprised of many original historic structures along with several reconstructed buildings on approximately 1,700 acres - including the site of the surrender of General Robert E. Lee.
A Blue Ridge Parkway experience is unlike any other, a slow-paced and relaxing drive revealing stunning long-range vistas and close-up views of the rugged mountains and pastoral landscapes of the Appalachian Highlands.
With 25 miles of trails winding through Catoctin Mountain Park, a variety of experiences are available ranging from easy to strenuous, many leading to outstanding scenic vistas.
This park was created to protect several historically significant locations in the Shenandoah Valley of Northern Virginia, notably the site of the American Civil War Battle of Cedar Creek and the Belle Grove Plantation.
Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park lets visitors explore history and the Potomac River along the 184 mile canal from Washington, DC to Cumberland, MD.
The Clara Barton National Historic Site was established in 1974 to interpret the life of Clara Barton (1821–1912), an American pioneer teacher, nurse, and humanitarian who was the founder of the American Red Cross.
Step back in time and experience life on a small farm in northern Virginia. Living history programs and demonstrations offer a glimpse of what life was like for a poor farm family, just before the Revolutionary War.
Colonial National Historical Park is located in the Hampton Roads region of Virginia and includes Historic Jamestowne, Yorktown Battlefield, Colonial Parkway, and Cape Henry Memorial.
Eisenhower National Historic Site is the home and farm of President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Located adjacent to the Gettysburg Battlefield, the farm served the President as a weekend retreat and a meeting place for world leaders.
Explore Ford's Theatre NHS, discover Abraham Lincoln's life in Washington DC, the struggle for a united country, and the motivation behind Lincoln's Assassination.
Fort Dupont is one of 68 forts that are collectively known as the Civil War Defenses of Washington. The park is linked to six surrounding forts by a 7-mile trail suitable for hiking or biking.
Fort Foote sits on high ground overlooking the Potomac River and offers a grand view of Washington and the Virginia shoreline. Fort Foote was constructed in 1863 to strengthen the ring of fortifications that encircled Washington, D.C.
This late 18th century star-shaped fort is world famous as the birthplace of the United States' National Anthem, "The Star-Spangled Banner", written by Francis Scott Key.
Fort Monroe National Monument was a military installation in Hampton, Virginia on the southern tip of the Virginia Peninsula. Within its 565 acres are 170 historic buildings and nearly 200 acres of natural resources on the Chesapeake Bay.
Fort Washington once guarded the water approach to the Nation's Capital and now provides grand views of Washington and Virginia.
The park and memorial to Francis Scott Key is located at 34th and M Street, NW, Washington DC, in the Georgetown Historic District. Francis Scott Key lived in a house at this location from 1803 until 1833.
The Frederick Douglass National Historic Site preserves the home and estate of Frederick Douglass, one of the most prominent African Americans of the 19th century. Douglass lived in this houseuntil his death in 1895.
When you set foot inside Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania County Battlefields National Military Park, you walk the bloodiest landscape in North America. No place more vividly reflects the War's tragic cost in all its forms.
In the heart of the Northern Neck of Virginia stands the George Washington Birthplace National Monument, a tribute to America’s founding father, George Washington.
The George Washington Memorial Parkway was designed for recreational driving. It links sites that commemorate important episodes in American history and preserve habitat for local wildlife.
The Battle of Gettysburg was a turning point in the Civil War, the Union victory that ended General Robert E. Lee's second and most ambitious invasion of the North.
Glen Echo Park is a magical place situated on the Potomac palisades near Bethesda, Maryland. Originally a Chautauqua retreat, then an amusement park, this National Park now presents vibrant arts and cultural programs.
Just 15 miles from the Nation's capital, Great Falls is considered the most spectacular natural landmark in the DC metropolitan area. The park providing a series of trails and overlooks from which to view the falls and the gorge.
Just twelve miles from Washington, D.C., Greenbelt Park is located in suburban Greenbelt, Maryland. The park features a 174 site campground, nine miles of trails, and three picnic areas.
Hampton National Historic Site is the story of people -- enslaved African Americans, European indentured servants, industrial and agricultural workers, and owners. Hampton offers a variety of experiences for its visitors.
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park offers a variety of experiences for visitors. Whether you enjoy recreation or historical inquiry, a quiet stroll by the river or a guided program with a ranger, there are opportunities for everyone.
Underground Railroad activity represents a different kind of 19th-century battlefield. Like a battlefield, the events that took place on this ground and the people who participated in them are long gone.
Site of the first permanent English settlement in North America (1607) along the James River, near the Bay. Explore the remains of the "Old Towne", as well as the "New Towne" where colonists built more substantial homes after 1620.
Kenilworth Park & Aquatic Gardens preserves rare waterlilies and lotuses in the cultivated ponds near the river. The park also contains the Kenilworth Marsh, the only remaining tidal marsh in Washington, D.C.
Manassas National Battlefield Park offers a wide array of activities, scenic vistas, historic sites and walking trails to interest the casual visitor or the true Civil War historian.
This National Historic Site has much to offer the visitor - from tours of the historic Council House (the first headquarters of the National Council of Negro Women) to special programs about the history of African American women.
Monocacy National Battlefield remembers July 9, 1864, the day when Union troops at Monocacy Junction delayed a Confederate force of superior strength for a day -- long enough that Washington, D.C. defenses could be strengthened.
Each year, millions visit the National Mall and Memorial Parks to recreate, to commemorate presidential legacies, to honor our nation's veterans, to make their voices heard, and to celebrate our nation's commitment to freedom and equality.
Oxon Cove Park and Oxon Cove Farm provide an excellent resource for environmental studies, wildlife observing, fishing, and other recreational activities made possible by easy access to the Potomac River.
The Petersburg National Battlefield commemorates the nine and one-half month siege of this city from June 1864 - April 1865.
Piscataway Park encompasses 5000 acres of open fields, dense forests, and wetlands along the Potomac River directly opposite Mt. Vernon, the land and home of George Washington.
The Center features many aspects of the White House, including its architecture, furnishings, first families, social events, and relations with the press and world leaders as well as a thirty minute video.
With cross-country skiing in winter, striking fall foliage in autumn, and great spring and summer recreation spots, Prince William Forest Park is a four-season destination welcoming generations of campers, hikers, bikers and nature lovers.
Richmond National Battlefield Park commemorates four major actions of the US Civil War, encompassing a large area with battlefield sites and visitor centers located in the City of Richmond, and nearby counties.
Rock Creek Park is truly a gem in our nation's capital. It offers visitors an opportunity to reflect and soothe their spirits through the beauty of nature along a tributary of the Potomac River, and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay.
One of the premier women's history sites in the country, the Sewall-Belmont House & Museum maintains an extensive collection of suffrage banners, archives and artifacts documenting the effort to win voting rights and equality for women.
Shenandoah National Park is your escape to recreation and re-creation. Cascading waterfalls, spectacular vistas, quiet wooded hollows—plan a hike, a meander along Skyline Drive, or a picnic with the family.
Steamtown NHS occupies about 40 acres of the Scranton railroad yard of the former Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad, one of the earliest rail lines in northeastern Pennsylvania.
Theodore Roosevelt Island features miles of trails through wooded uplands and swampy bottomlands that honor the legacy of a great outdoorsman and conservationist.
Visit the restored house and stroll the 322 acres of Haberdeventure, a "dwelling place in the winds". Purchased in 1770, this restored plantation home has been open to the public as a National Historic Site since 1997.
As the only national park dedicated to presenting the performing arts, Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts hosts performances each summer at the Filene Center and the Theatre-in-the-Woods.
Revolutionary War battlefield overlooking the port city of Yorktown where Cornwallis surrendered to George Washington ending the War.