Grand Canyon to waive fees to kick off National Park Week

Visitors can enter the park for free and participate in Earth Day celebrations April 19 and 20

Visitors mingle around activity booths at a previous Earth Day.

Visitors mingle around activity booths at a previous Earth Day.

GRAND CANYON, Ariz. - The Grand Canyon National Park invites everyone to get wild for history, nature, trails and archaeology during National Park Week, April 19 through 27. To get the celebration going, Grand Canyon National Park will waive its entrance fees on April 19 and 20.

The park will begin Earth Day celebrations on April 19 with a free screening of the award-winning, environmental film "Watershed." Produced and narrated by Robert Redford, the film tells the story of the threats to the once-mighty Colorado River and starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Shrine of the Ages. The next day, April 20, the park will put on an open-house style celebration from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Grand Canyon Visitor Center Plaza. The public is invited to join park rangers, Green Team members, park partners and various organizations and businesses from throughout northern Arizona in a "green" celebration packed with unique and interactive activities related to water, the environment and all nature has to offer at Grand Canyon National Park. The park will have other fun park activities throughout the weekend, including litter clean-up projects. All of the weekend's activities are family friendly and free.

Grand Canyon National Park's 2014 Earth Day celebration is a collaborative effort with the National Park Service, Xanterra South Rim, Grand Canyon Railway, Delaware North, Bright Angel Bicycles, and the park's cooperating association and fundraising partner, Grand Canyon Association.

Park officials remind visitors that fee-free designation applies to entrance fees only and does not affect fees for camping, reservations, tours, or use of concessions. Park entrance stations will have the Interagency Senior and Annual Passes available for those who wish to purchase them. Visitors who plan to spend time in the park beyond April 20 will need to pay the regular entrance fee for the remainder of their stay.

This year, additional fee-free days will occur in honor of the National Park Service birthday on Aug. 25, National Public Lands Day on Sept. 27 and Veterans Day on Nov. 11.

More information on what there is to see and do in Grand Canyon National Park is available by visiting the park's website www.nps.gov/grca. More on national park fee-free days is available by going www.nps.gov/findapark/.

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