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Contact: Bob Cromwell, Acting Chief Ranger, 360-816-6253
On August 27, 2016, the 100th anniversary of the founding of the National Park Service will be celebrated at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site (NHS), one of the 412 units of the national park system. Activities will take place at each of the four sites that make up this national park: the reconstructed Fort Vancouver, Vancouver Barracks, Pearson Air Museum, and the McLoughlin House in Oregon City, Oregon. Additionally, in honor of the centennial, all national parks nationwide, including Fort Vancouver NHS, will waive their entrance fees from August 25-27, 2016.
"In the first 100 years of the National Park Service, 412 areas have been set aside for preservation and management by the National Park Service. These special places are here for all Americans today and tomorrow," said Superintendent Tracy Fortmann, "National parks are touchstones for all Americans, and we are proud to protect, preserve, and share them with our visitors every day."
On August 27 from 9 am to 5 pm, costumed historical reenactors will offer interactive historic demonstrations inside the reconstructed Fort Vancouver. On the Vancouver Barracks Parade Ground, visitors can learn about the site's military history at historic weapons demonstrations taking place at 10 am, 1 pm, and 3 pm. In the Great Meadow, across from Pearson Air Museum, reenactors from the 1st Oregon Volunteer Cavalry will represent the site's Civil War-era history.
At 10 am, an opening ceremony will unveil a new permanent exhibit at Pearson Air Museum: a ca. 1919 DH-4B Liberty Plane restored by Century Aviation of Wenatchee, Washington. Visitors will learn how DH-4 Liberty Planes are linked the history of Pearson Field. The Vancouver Community Concert Band will perform historic songs for this event.
At the park's Visitor Center, a time capsule containing visitor notes and present-day ephemera about Fort Vancouver NHS and the national parks will be officially closed at 1 pm. The capsule is to be opened in 2116 for the Bicentennial of the National Park Service. Visitors can enjoy light refreshments in the Visitor Center and visit with costumed reenactors from 10 am to 3 pm.
At the McLoughlin House in Oregon City, tours of the historic home will take place very hour from 10:15 am to 3:15 pm, with a short historical vignette following each tour. The vignette portrays the family of Dr. John McLoughlin in the August of 1850.
From August 25-27, in the Great Meadow section of the park opposite the reconstructed Fort Vancouver, the Clark County Amateur Radio Club will be transmitting live from HAM radio sets as part of the "National Parks on the Air" campaign, which is encouraging HAM radio operators to set up temporary stations at every national park unit throughout the nation. The public is encouraged to visit with the radio operators, and to listen in on transmissions from around the northern hemisphere as well as transmit messages of good will from our urban national park.
"We are looking forward to celebrating the Centennial, and providing a venue for our community to celebrate this historic national event," said Acting Chief Ranger Bob Cromwell, "Serving the Vancouver metro area at this national park is a unique honor, and we can't wait to see what our second century will bring!"
What: The Centennial of the National Park Service at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site
When: August 27, 2016
Reconstructed Fort Vancouver, 1001 E Fifth Street, Vancouver, WA 98661
Pearson Air Museum, 1115 E Fifth Street, Vancouver, WA 98661
Visitor Center, 1501 E Evergreen Blvd, Vancouver, WA 98661
McLoughlin House, 713 Center Street, Oregon City, OR 97045