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Passport® Picks For Winter In The National Park System


Winter is upon us and although some of our parks have closed their visitor centers for the season, there are still many ways to enjoy our national parks! The folks at Eastern National, which is behind the Passport To Your National Parks® program, put together this list to highlight some of the activities that are taking place in December, January, and February. Pack up the car, grab your Passport®, and explore the parks!

Holiday Open Houses. Bask in the holiday spirit throughout the national park system this season. Explore Point Reyes National Seashore on December 13, or Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site on December 14. Or find other open house events here.

Special Christmas Events. Enjoy a weekend with Santa at Steamtown National Historic Site on December 14 & 15.

March of Continental Army. Washington's Army wintered at Valley Forge, PA in 1777-1778. Join Valley Forge National Historical Park for the commemoration of the army's march into the area on December 19.

Candlelight and Luminary Tours. View the parks in a different light this winter. Tour the luminaries at De Soto National Memorial on December 21.

Heritage and other Festivals. Enjoy all winter has to offer at Homestead National Monument of America's Winter Festival of Prairie Cultures December 15, explore the fungus among us at Point Reyes National Seashore's ninth annual Fungus Fair on January 5, or enjoy Biscayne National Park's Family Fun Fest on January 12 or February 9.

Snowshoeing. Take a walk through the snow in our national parks! See Herbert Hoover National Historic Site on January 4 or 18, or explore Craters of the Moon National Monument throughout the season in this special way!

Head to warmer climates. San Juan National Historic Site is celebrating its anniversary of becoming a park on February 14. A trip to Puerto Rico would make a wonderful break from the winter weather-or a memorable gift for that someone special!

Parks are for the Birds. Are you interested in viewing some of our fine feathered friends? Search for eagles at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area December 29, January 4, or February 16.

More Parks After Dark. Explore the Night Museum at Andersonville National Historic Site on January 24 & 25, or Glow in the Park at Ocmulgee National Monument on January 12.

Boston Tea Party. Boston National Historical Park's Old South Meetinghouse and the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum invite you to relive the Boston Tea Party at this year's 240th anniversary event on December 16.

Bonus: Winter Solstice Sunrise. If you're a morning person, join Chaco Culture National Historical Park for the sunrise on the shortest day of the year on December 21. Then enjoy the rest of what the park has to offer for the rest of the day.


And don't forget the open house in the Smokies.

On Saturday, December 21, Great Smoky Mountains National Park will host a Holiday Homecoming at the Oconaluftee Visitor Center where children and adults will have an opportunity to learn about and experience some of the traditions surrounding an Appalachian Christmas. Park staff and volunteers will provide hands-on traditional crafts and activities from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. the park will host the monthly acoustic old time jam session.

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