Cheyenne, a rising fifth grader from Maryland, sent the below message to the White House email list. Didn't get the message? Sign up here for updates.
My name is Cheyenne and I am a rising 5th grader at an elementary school in Maryland.
This Thursday, August 25, the National Park Service turns 100 years old.
To celebrate this anniversary, all national parks will be free to visit from August 25 -- 28, and I wanted to tell you why I hope you will go to FindYourPark.com and plan a visit to some of these amazing places.
Parks are very important to me. When you go to parks, you are able to see just how beautiful and awesome the outdoors can be and how we must be good stewards of our planet.
Sure, you can go on an adventure in a video game, or see someone else's adventure on social media, but think of how much better it would be to LIVE the adventure! With so many national parks in the country, no video game or TV show can beat the fun adventures that exist outside!
Our school is part of National Park Trust’s Buddy Bison environmental education program and that’s how I learned about the President’s Every Kid in a Park initiative. This program, which will start its second year on September 1, gives passes to all 4th graders in the country so that they and their families can visit any national park and public land for free for a full year.
My Every Kid in a Park pass not only provides free entry into all national parks, but also serves as a reminder that I need to keep discovering and exploring new outdoor and historic places. Last June, my classmates and I went to National Colonial Farm at Piscataway Park in Maryland. I enjoyed pretending that we were time travelers going to the 1800s to fix some other time travelers’ mistakes. It was so much fun!
My park visits with my school and family inspired me to write my own book, For the Love of Water, since I learned that it is important that we protect our earth’s water. I have even thought about becoming a park ranger!
Thank you President Obama and the many others who gave 4th graders passes to visit these amazing parts of our country. Even as a 5th grader, without my pass, I want to go to more national parks very soon.
I hope that everyone will join in the celebration of the National Park Service’s 100 years of existence and have the chance to get outside and explore the great outdoors!