Did you know that there are thirty locations spread throughout Virginia that are designated national parks and monuments? Honestly, I had no idea, but in hind sight, it isn’t all that surprising. After all, with the footprints of the nation’s first citizens, the birthplace of six presidents, our “southern” roots, and the role Virginians played in the War Between the States, our history alone should have made my own discovery not so surprising.
Now consider the natural beauty that spans the state from the Blue Ridge Mountains to the Eastern Shore, what a shame it would be if Virginia wasn’t one of the states most heavily designated with nationally recognized noteworthy locations, each one set aside to preserve the culture and history of America. Anyone with the time to visit these locations would be enlightened to the full spectrum of the trials and tribulations experience by the American people, from struggling settlers to powerful Mother Nature.
The diversity of what can be learned and enjoyed at the National Park locations runs the gamut of interests and history. A peek into early American life can be found at such locations as Claude Moore Colonial Farm, and Civil War battlefield sites are plentiful including the Richmond, Petersburg, and Manassas National Battlefield Parks. If its natural beauty you’re looking for, Shenandoah National Park or Assateague National Sea Shore should fit the bill nicely.
Take a view into the lives of presidents and other prominent figures in American history such as at the Booker T. Washington National Monument or the Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site. Don’t know who Maggie Walker was? I can suggest a great way to find out!
Are you someone that needs to be entertained? How about taking in a show at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts, the only national park in the country designated to the performing arts.
And if you are the type who likes to create your own entertainment utilizing the quiet and beauty of the outdoors, locations such as the 2,175 mile long Appalachian Trail will provide plenty of space to do it in. In fact, many of Virginia’s nationally dedicated locations offer ample opportunity to hike, bike, and otherwise clear your body and soul of all the unpleasantries that accumulates within us during the everyday trials of life.
The Virginia Association for Parks is an organization dedicated to supporting the national, state, and regional park systems in Virginia through volunteer activities, activism, and education. They encourage you to enjoy our national parks firsthand, and then learn about what you can do to ensure that they remain for future generations to learn from and appreciate. For more information about the VAFP, you can visit their web site at www.virginiaparks.org.
Virginia’s National Parks. Something for everyone to enjoy and appreciate.