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Contact: Cassie Branstetter, 870-365-2744Harrison, Ark. – Buffalo National River invites all to join in celebrating the 50th anniversary of the designation of Buffalo National River, America’s First National River. To celebrate this historic milestone, the park is planning a series of event weekends throughout 2022. Preparation for and presentation of these events are made possible by the hard work and volunteerism of many park and community partners, including Buffalo National River Partners, Buffalo River Historic Jail and Museum, Arkansas Master Naturalists, and Lucky Star Farm.
Buffalo National River superintendent Mark Foust says, “The creation of Buffalo National River was the first of its kind. We would love for our communities and park visitors to come celebrate this incredible park and what it has been, is, and will be. Please join us as we share the river, its resources, and history throughout the year. Just like the park itself, the celebrations offer a little bit of everything for all to enjoy.”
Buffalo National River was originally designated by Congress as a public park in 1972 to conserve the unique scenic and scientific features of the area, while preserving as free flowing an important segment of the Buffalo River for the enjoyment of future generations. The planned events weekends in 2022 celebrating the 50th anniversary of Buffalo National River are as follows:
- History Weekend February 26th - March 1st, 2022, celebrating the rich cultural history of the area and the creation of the park.
- March 1st, 2022: Science Symposium held at North Arkansas College including an opening ceremony for the anniversary year and a celebration with birthday cake!
- Sunday, February 27th, 2022: Tribal Connections Presentation at St. Joe High School Auditorium discussing current and historical tribal connections to Buffalo National River. Coordinated by Bob King of the Buffalo River Historic Jail and Museum
- Saturday, February 26th, 2022: Ranger talk on the geologic history of the area presented at Buffalo Point.
- Saturday, February 26th, 2022: Oral History StoryCorps Event. Buffalo National River Oral History – StoryCorps Archive Collecting oral histories from those who have stories to tell about their experiences at the river or around the creation of the National River in 1972. Location To Be Announced
- Art in the Park Weekend June 9th-12th, 2022, celebrating the ways in which Buffalo National River inspires artistic endeavors.
- Thursday, June 9th, 2022: A Night at the Kenda Drive-in.
- Friday, June 10th, 2022: Music, Words, and Images of the Buffalo River at the Buffalo Point Campground Amphitheater. Coordinated by Lucky Star Farm.
- Saturday, June 11th, 2022: Music Festival at Tyler Bend, featuring National Park Radio, Bruce "Sunpie" Barnes and the Sunspots, Sycamore, Will Gunselman, and Still on the Hill. Hosted by Buffalo National River and Buffalo National River Partners.
- Sunday, June 12th, 2022: The Chinelos Morelenses Unidos en Arkansas, a Mexican American Dance group from Springdale, will perform at Ozark Campground and speak about the inspiration they gather from nature and the Buffalo River area.
- Park RX Weekend October 8th - 9th, 2022, celebrating the natural resources at Buffalo National River and the health benefits they provide.
- All weekend, throughout the park there will be a photo geocaching scavenger hunt.
- Saturday, October 8th, 2022: “Yoga in the Park” with yoga instructors at the Steel Creek and the Buffalo Point campgrounds.
- Saturday, October 8th”, 2022: Moon Party at the Tyler Bend pavilion, a program to view the moon with telescopes and discuss the importance of the night sky.
- Sunday, October 9th, 2022: Naturalization Ceremony held at the Ozark Campground Pavilion, naturalizing 15 new United Stated Citizens.
About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's more than 420 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov, and on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.
Last updated: May 13, 2022