September 2019 Monthly Theme: National Parks in Your Neighborhood

Bicyclist riding across a bridge over a channel

NPS Photo

With a reach beyond the borders of our national parks, how is the National Park Service a neighbor engaged with communities across the country?

Whether managing the park next door or preserving the actual house next door, the National Park Service (NPS) is a neighbor in more communities than people may realize. For our September monthly theme, parks can share how they are members of a larger community, while NPS programs and partners can highlight projects that often extend beyond park boundaries.

For parks, NPS programs, and our partners, here are some thoughts to inspire you!

  • Share how you participate in communities both inside and outside park boundaries through things like events, grants, student programs, preservation projects, etc.

  • Demonstrate with specific projects how partnerships, friends groups, and philanthropy have helped preserve treasures in parks for future generations. Consider highlighting specific projects you are working on related to tackling the maintenance backlog or improving recreational opportunities.

  • Tell stories of local employees, volunteers, and staff that are from the neighborhood and how they were inspired to become stewards of parks.

  • Invite members of the community to get involved in specific projects that impact the neighborhood, including volunteer, intern, and scout projects.

  • Use your museum collection to tell the story of the local community through objects or oral histories.

  • Plan a trip itinerary (thing to do or trip idea) throughout your park or region with local insider tips or highlighting the work of your program in neighborhoods.

  • Create or share a lesson plan that highlights natural and cultural resources in the neighborhood.

  • Share tools and resources available for preserving natural and cultural resources in communities, including standards, guides, preservation tax incentives, and grants. See community assistance programs for more details.

Social Media

Social media hashtags for our monthly theme are #NPSNeighbors and #HispanicHeritageMonth. Don’t forget to use #FindYourPark / #EncuentratuParque so the NPS national accounts and the National Park Foundation can easily find and possibly share your posts!

Where appropriate, link back to these pages or park websites on

Other September Themes & Activities

Can you find ways to connect any of these additional themes and activities to the monthly servicewide theme or yearlong themes of encouraging recreational opportunities and tackling deferred maintenance? Throughout the month, there are many other themes and celebrations that NPS parks, programs, and partners can join in. Find more information about these topics related to the NPS and common social media hashtags to use for a few of the other things happening in September:

Last updated: June 25, 2019