The government body oversees 411 national parks, recreation areas, and various moments, and as the Chronicle reminds us was officially created by President Woodrow Wilson on August 25, 1916.
A record 330 million people are expected to visit a national park this year. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are free but required.
(AP Photo/Brennan Linsley). An RV drives through Grand Teton National Park, Wyo., Thursday, Aug 25, 2016. Park rangers will also take part in the performance and will narrate for "Carnival of Animals" and a brand new piece that will tell the story of the birth of the National Park Service.
"National Parks are a gift to us all", he said.
The centennial came as the agency, which manages national parks as well as historic places, welcomed a new national monument and nature forced some changes in a party in the West.
There are now 59 major parks out of the 413 parks that span 84 million acres, the newest being Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument in ME, which is 87,000 acres donated by the founder of Burt's Bees and designated Wednesday by President Obama. Other free admission days are planned throughout the year to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the park system, as well as additional special programming. A recent study by the National Park Service found that only 11 percent of Yosemite visitors were Latino, despite the ethnic group making up 39 percent of the state's population.
But the park actually dates back to Colonial times when an Army fort operated on the northern tip of its 7-mile peninsula. "And that you preserve them for future generations".
Crew member Sherman Windley, an aviation specialist, said the crew got the opportunity to see the cliff dwellings in the park, including Balcony House.
"We need to have advocates from elected members of congress to provide the needed support, and that means that our visitors to national parks and those that appreciate our national parks represent the broad diversity of Americans", she said.