Mammoth Cave NP celebrates National Public Lands Day September 28

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Date: September 20, 2013
Contact: Vickie Carson, 270-758-2192

National Public Lands Day, September 28, 2013 

MAMMOTH CAVE, Ky., September 20, 2013 – This land is your land, from the Daniel Boone National Forest to Land Between the Lakes, from Big Bone Lick State Park to Lake Cumberland, from Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park to Mammoth Cave National Park – public lands belong to the people. Saturday, September 28, is National Public Lands Day, a time to appreciate your city, county, state, and federal parks, lakes, and forests.
"We have a fun schedule of activities for our visitors on National Public Lands Day," said Sarah Craighead, superintendent of Mammoth Cave National Park. "In addition to our daily schedule of walks and cave tours, there will be free Mammoth Passage tours, mini-talks at the amphitheater, volunteer trail work, and the Friends of Mammoth Cave National Park are offering a Walk in the Park. There is plenty to do – come out and enjoy your Park!"
Free Mammoth Passage Tours
The free Mammoth Passage tours will depart from the visitor center at the following times: 10:30, 11:00, 12:00, 1:00, 2:00, 2:45, and 3:30. The ¾-mile, 1¼ hours Mammoth Passage tour is limited to 40 people. Participants need to pick up a free ticket in the visitor center before going on the tour. Note: tour requirements regarding white-nose syndrome (WNS) in bats: While there are no known harmful effects to humans, WNS is responsible for the deaths of millions of hibernating bats across the United States since its discovery in 2006. WNS has not been found in the toured areas of Mammoth Cave to date, however, Park staff are taking precautions to minimize the spread of WNS fungus to or from Mammoth Cave. When going on a Mammoth Cave tour, do not wear clothing or shoes that have been worn in other caves or mines. All participants on cave tours must walk on bio-security mats immediately following the conclusion of their tour.

Friends of Mammoth Cave NP  Walk in the Park
Register now for the 2013 Walk in the Park on National Public Lands Day. The hike this year will be along the Mammoth Cave Railroad Hike and Bike Trail for a total of four miles. Sponsored by the Friends of Mammoth Cave National Park, this is an annual fundraiser in support of Park programs and projects. Registration is available on line at

Mini-Talks at the Park Amphitheater
Rangers, Friends, and researchers will present short talks at the Park amphitheater on National Public Lands Day, beginning at 12:30 p.m. In case of rain, the mini-talks will be moved to the Park training center.  
  • 12:30 Civil War in Kentucky, Ranger David Spence 
  • 1:00 Mammoth Cave: From Homeplace to Public Land, DelMarie Vaccaro, Board Member, Friends of Mammoth Cave NP  
  • 1:30 Cave Research: Microbes and Water Quality, Researcher Petra Byl 
  • 2:00 National Park Service careers, Ranger Johnny Merideth 
Volunteer through Fitness, Fun and Service
"Thanks to an Active Trails grant from the National Park Foundation, we started a program called Fitness, Fun and Service to engage trail users in caring for the trails, too," said Craighead. "We have organized two volunteer opportunities on National Public Lands Day, one in the morning in the backcountry, and one in the afternoon on the south side of Green River. We depend on trail users to take care of the trails so that they can continue to be open to the public."

Fitness, Fun and Service is designed to assist the Park staff with trailside trimming, trail rehabilitation, and erosion control. Tools and supplies are supplied by the National Park Foundation. Wear comfortable clothing and be aware that ticks, chiggers, poison ivy and snakes are still active in the woods. The two volunteer opportunities are scheduled for: 
  • 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. – Meet at the Caver's Campstore at 9:00 a.m. and caravan to First Creek Trailhead, for work on First Creek Trail.  
  • 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. – Meet at the Caver's Campstore at 1:00 p.m. and caravan to Locust Grove Cemetery, to work on the Mammoth Cave Railroad Bike and Hike Trail and the Union City Road (a gated road that hikers and bikers may use). 
Evening Program at Amphitheater
The evening program at the Park amphitheater is scheduled for 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. Ranger Darlene Owens' presentation will focus on the Civilian Conservation Corps camps that helped create Mammoth Cave National Park in the 1930s.  

Last updated: April 14, 2015

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Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 7
Mammoth Cave, KY 42259-0007


(270) 758-2180

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