National park admission free Saturday and Sunday - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

National park admission free Saturday and Sunday

Eileen Martinez Eileen Martinez

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar Friday announced that the National Park Service will waive entrance fees on August 14 and 15 to encourage all Americans to visit our national parks.

"This fee-free weekend provides an opportunity for individuals and families alike to take an affordable vacation or to explore a nearby park they have never visited before," Salazar said. "I encourage everyone to take advantage of the free admission to visit not only our greatest natural wonders but also our nation's historic and cultural icons."

Here in Hawaii, all the national parks and monuments that normally charge admission will be letting you in for free on Saturday August 14 and Sunday August 15. If you are on the Big Island, it's a great chance to check the latest activity from Kilauea.

"It's still a very exciting time at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Visitors can go to the Jagger Overlook 24 hours a day to see the huge plume that rises into the sky, and at night, to watch that glow is just spectacular. So that is most definitely something to do on the Big Island, and then if you want to get a little closer, the East Rift Zone down from Highway 130, in the county of Hawaii, that is also open. The viewing is open from 2:00 to 8:00 each day" said Eileen Martinez, chief of interpretation at the World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument.

There are 391 national parks located across the country in 49 states, many of which will hold free events on August 14 and 15.

Another big event coming up over on the big island of Hawaii, the national historic site at Puukohola Heiau will mark the 200th anniversary of the unification of the islands.

"This is a very important ceremony. It actually begins on Saturday morning at 6:30 with an opening ceremony. Activities will include canoe rides, free to the public. Many, many crafts, food, ceremonies throughout the day, and this will go all day Saturday and all day Sunday until 3:00. So we do expect probably 600 people to arrive, and so we're really hoping more than come out and explore that park and explore those stories" said Martinez.
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