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February 23, 2017
Capitol Reef National Park Seeks Candidates for its First Artist-in-Residence Program
Application forms for Capitol Reef National Park’s 2017 Artist-in-Residence program are now being accepted. We are seeking applicants for the park’s first Artist-in-Residence program who will be able to express the park’s features and issues in a powerful and engaging way through the medium of painting, drawing or photography. The goal of this emerging program is to present a new perspective and understanding of Capitol Reef’s effect on us, and of the challenges the park faces in this century.   “This residency program is an exciting progression of our relationship with the artist community, and will give visitors the chance to know Capitol Reef in a new and different way, through the eyes of an artist,” said Capitol Reef National Park former Superintendent Leah McGinnis. This first Artist-in-Residence is scheduled to coincide with the Fourth Annual Arts and the Park: Light on the Reef Plein Air Event, scheduled for May 30 - June 3, 2017. For those who are interested in applying, the online application is now available at  Application materials must be received by Sunday April 5, 2017. For more information, please call 435-425-4112. 

January 12, 2017
Leah McGinnis named new superintendent of Saguaro National Park
Leah McGinnis, a 28-year veteran of the National Park Service (NPS), has been named superintendent of Saguaro National Park in Arizona by NPS Intermountain Region Director Sue Masica. McGinnis, who recently completed a four-month stint as acting superintendent of Saguaro, is superintendent of Capitol Reef National Park in Utah. She will begin her new assignment the week of Feb. 19.

November 20, 2016
Annual Holiday Open House at Capitol Reef
“Come join us as we welcome the winter holidays with songs of the season’,” says Shirley Torgerson, Executive Director of the Capitol Reef Natural History Association. This open house celebration will be Friday December 2, 2016 from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm.   At 2:00 pm children from Wayne County Loa Elementary School will decorate the park holiday tree with hand-made ornaments commemorating the National Park Service Centennial, and sing holiday songs. Live music by Becky Pace and Lynsey Shelar begins at 1:00 pm. Refreshments will be provided. A special discount of 20% off all bookstore merchandise is offered on Friday and Saturday, December 2 and 3. More information about Capitol Reef National Park can be found at and about Capitol Reef Natural History Association at 

November 14, 2016
2017 Fee Free Days
 National Park Service Announces Fee Free Days for 2017 Ten More Great Reasons to Visit a National Park WASHINGTON – Combine great scenery and history with great savings and visit a national park for free on one of 10 fee free days in 2017. The ten entrance fee-free days for 2017 will be: January 16: Martin Luther King Jr. Day February 20: Presidents Day April 15-16 & April 22-23: National Park Week Weekends August 25: National Park Service Birthday September 30: National Public Lands Day November 11-12: Veterans Day Weekend

October 14, 2016
2016 Autumn & 2017 Winter Hours of Operations & Events
The Capitol Reef National Park Visitor Center is currently open 8:00 am to 6:00 pm through October 29. Free interpretive programs will include: a geology talk at the visitor center at 10:00 am, Prehistoric Culture talk at the Highway 24 petroglyph panel at 3:00 pm, and occasional campground evening programs at 7:30 pm as staffing allows. Beginning October 30, 2016, visitor center hours will be 8:00 am to 4:30 pm daily through the winter.

September 17, 2016
Celebrate the Dark Night Sky at Heritage Starfest on September 30 and October 1, 2016
Capitol Reef National Park and the Entrada Institute are partnering to present the 7th annual Heritage Starfest. The weekend will be full of special events, guest speakers, stargazing, telescope viewing, storytelling and more. The dark skies of Wayne County and Capitol Reef are among the darkest in the nation allowing visitors from around the world to enjoy pristine skies full of stars, constellations, and the Milky Way. This event celebrates dark sky resources and the connection all living things have to the natural rhythms of the night. It is also an opportunity to celebrate the many contributions made by the late Linton Rohr.

September 08, 2016
Celebrate Capitol Reef National Park’s Harvest Homecoming
Join in the Celebration of Fruita’s Historic Orchards during Capitol Reef National Park’s premier centennial event, held in the Fruita Historic District of Capitol Reef National Park on Saturday, September 17, 2016!

August 18, 2016
Reward Offered in Vandalism at Petroglyph Panel
Capitol Reef National Park has partnered with the Capitol Reef Natural History Association in offering a reward of $500 for information leading to the conviction of individuals who vandalized the "Highway Petroglyph Site" in Capitol Reef National Park.

August 10, 2016
Do Not Write on the Rocks: It is Illegal
A dramatic rise in the number of graffiti incidents is occurring in areas throughout Capitol Reef National Park. Under the Archeological Resources Protection Act (ARPA), these acts of vandalism are illegal and are punishable by up to 2 years in prison and/or a $20,000 fine.

August 08, 2016
Celebrate the National Park Service’s 100th Anniversary at Capitol Reef National Park
Capitol Reef National Park will celebrate the 100th birthday of the National Park Service by giving special programs on Thursday, August 25, 2016. All ranger talks will celebrate this momentous milestone, culminating with an evening program on the History of the National Park Service, given at the Fruita Campground amphitheater at 8:30 pm.

July 20, 2016
Ripple Rock Nature Center: Partners in the Park
Capitol Reef National Park’s Ripple Rock Nature provides local community youth, along with the general public, an exceptional opportunity to experience and learn about the park’s natural and cultural history through daily hands-on programs, Junior Ranger activities, and interactive displays. The nature center helps to educate youth and enhance their understanding of American Indian culture, pioneer history, geology, paleontology, astronomy, wildlife, and much more. The goal of the nature center is not to simply teach park visitors about the many wonders within the park, but to foster curiosity through playful activities. Ripple Rock Nature Center programs and displays target family groups, but there is something fun for everyone to enjoy.

June 02, 2016
Capitol Reef National Park 2016 FRUIT HARVEST
Fruit season is upon us. Cherries, apricots, peaches, plums, apples, and pears are typically available for harvest each summer at Capitol Reef National Park. The prediction for the 2016 fruit season shows that apricots, apples, pears and peaches should be in good supply. “We are looking forward to a fun and safe fruit season,” says Superintendent Leah McGinnis. Up-to-date fruit harvest information and pricing is recorded on the Capitol Reef Fruit Hotline as fruit ripens and specific harvest start dates are determined. To reach the fruit hotline, call (435) 425-3791. Once the park number connects, press one for general information and, at the voice prompt for the orchard hotline, press five. Fruit harvest information is also posted on the park Facebook page and Twitter feed. Information on the Fruita Orchards is available on the parks website at under “plan your visit.” Climbing fruit trees is not permitted in the park. The National Park Service provides special fruit picking ladders. Use care when picking fruit and carefully read and follow posted instructions on fruit picking and ladder use. Commercial picking requires a permit. Capitol Reef National Park uses the receipts from fruit sales to defray the cost of maintaining the orchards. The historic Fruita orchards are among the largest in the National Park System and were established beginning in the 1880s by Mormon pioneer residents of Fruita. The orchards are a main focus of the park’s celebrations during this Centennial anniversary of the National Park Service. About the National Park Service: More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 409 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at

May 10, 2016
2016 Summer Hours of Operation
The Capitol Reef National Park Visitor Center will be open 8:00 am to 6:00 pm daily starting Sunday May 15, 2016. Visitors can expect to see more people in the park this Centennial summer, and parking areas may be full during peak hours. Free ranger-guided programs will be offered beginning May 22 including a daily geology talk at 10:00 am and daily archeology programs at 3:00 pm. Nightly evening programs will be offered at the campground amphitheater typically 1 hour after sunset. Other programs include Talks, Walks, star programs and hikes. Ranger program schedules are posted at the visitor center, Gifford house, nature center, and Campground Hosts' sites with start times and locations. The Ripple Rock Nature Center, located .9 mile (1.4 km) south of the visitor center on Scenic Drive, will open for the season May 22 and be open daily 9:00 am to 5:00 pm through Labor Day weekend, with generous staffing support from Utah Valley University interns and Capitol Reef Natural History Association staff. The historic Gifford House, located 1 mile (1.6 km) south of the visitor center on Scenic Drive, will also extend hours from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm daily staring Sunday May 15, 2016.

May 10, 2016
Students, Rangers and Educators Celebrate at the Historic Fruita Schoolhouse
Capitol Reef National Park Rangers, Loa Elementary Fifth Graders, and Wayne School Superintendent Burke Torgerson all have momentous occasions to celebrate! On the morning of Thursday, May 19, 2016, we will join together at the Fruita Historic Schoolhouse to celebrate the graduation of Fifth Grade students from Loa Elementary School, the retirement of Wayne School Superintendent Burke Torgerson, and the Centennial of the National Park Service.

May 01, 2016
Capitol Reef National Park Notice of Fivemile Wash Closure
Due to special resource management concerns, Fivemile Wash is closed to hiking and canyoneering from the head of the wash to two miles downstream in the drainage. This closure will begin May 1, 2016 and remain in effect until August 31, 2016. This closure is in accordance with 36 CFR 1.5 (a)(1). The National Park Service (NPS) works to sustain and recover over a thousand populations of federally listed threatened and endangered (T&E) species. Over half of the 407 NPS units contain one or more endangered or threatened species. Our mission is to reduce the risk of extinction of plants and animals in the parks, and to restore species that have occurred in parks historically but have been lost due to human activities. The NPS seeks to be proactive in determining the status of rare species and cooperating with other agencies to conserve declining species to avoid listing under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Please call the visitor center staff at 435-425-3791 for more information. About the National Park Service: More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 407 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at, on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube

March 31, 2016
Find Capitol Reef National Park During National Park Week
Celebrate National Park Week with free admission and special programs from April 16-24.Capitol Reef National Park staff will offer programs on park geology, prehistoric cultures, Pioneer history, nature, and astronomy.Schedules will be posted in the visitor center and Fruita Campground.

March 15, 2016
Capitol Reef National Park Celebrates “Harvest Homecoming” on Saturday, September 17, 2016
"Celebrate Harvest Homecoming with us," says Shirley Torgerson, Executive Director of the Capitol Reef Natural History Association. This year's gathering on September 17, 2016, also celebrates the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service and is Capitol Reef National Park's signature centennial event.

March 15, 2016
2016 Easter Egg Hunt
Everyone is invited to the annual Easter Egg Hunt in Capitol Reef National Park at 9:00 am on Saturday, March 26. The egg hunt is organized for three groups: children ages 3, 4 and 5 at the Picnic Area;ages 6, 7 and 8 also at the Picnic Area;and ages 9, 10 and 11 at the Ripple Rock Nature Center. Participants are encouraged to arrive early! Special programming at the Ripple Rock Nature Center will be provided for visitors of all ages during Saturday afternoon.

March 03, 2016
2016 Spring Hours of Operation at Capitol Reef National Park
The Capitol Reef National Park Visitor Center will be open 8:00 am to 5:00 pm daily starting Tuesday March 22, 2016. The historic Gifford House will be open 8:00 am to 5:00 pm daily starting Monday, March 14, 2016.The park itself is open continuously.

September 22, 2015
Capitol Reef Celebrates Harvest Homecoming
Capitol Reef National Park and Capitol Reef Natural History Association celebrate Harvest Homecoming October 3rd, with live music and cultural demonstrations on quilting and rug twining, and apple pressing and pottery making.

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

HC 70, Box 15
Torrey, UT 84775



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