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High-Profile Weekend for Parks


    It was a glorious, sun-soaked weekend across the Rockies, and a memorable one for the national park system.
    While National Park Service Director Mary Bomar was in southeastern Colorado to dedicate a new unit of the system, the Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site, First Lady Laura Bush endured mid-summer-like temperatures in southwestern Utah to rededicate the Zion National Park Nature Center.
    The two events marked a crossroads of ideals: the arrival, despite the Park Service's dire fiscal condition, of a new, worthy unit of the system; the honoring of one of the system's older units, Zion, and; the value of the Junior Ranger program that can bond children with nature and the parks.
    These are important and valuable ideals, for they reflect the best of the national park movement.
    For the rest of this week the First Lady will be doing what I'm sure many of us wish we could be doing: waking each morning in the red-rock splendor of Zion and exploring the park on foot.

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