News Release

Ten ways to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month in national parks

A mural painted on the supports of an underpass in a grassy park.
Chicano Park, in San Diego, California, was the site of a powerful protest in 1970. The park is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

NPS photo

News Release Date: September 15, 2021

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WASHINGTON – This Hispanic Heritage Month, discover the connection between national parks across the country and Hispanic/Latinx heritage. From visiting parks in person to learning about Hispanic/Latinx history to exploring ways to get involved in parks, Hispanic Heritage Month is an opportunity for all to learn about the intersection of national parks, conservation and recreation with Hispanic/Latinx heritage.  

Two people riding horses in a grass field
Horseback riding in Valles Calderas National Preserve.

NPS Photo

Explore the connection between national parks and Hispanic/Latinx heritage.

More than 500 years of Hispanic and Latinx history and heritage can be found in national parks or shared through NPS programs and partners in communities across the country. Discover these remarkable, complex, and at times, painful stories preserved in our national parks and historic places.
  • Tumacácori National Historical Park, a place where Spanish missionaries, settlers and soldiers intersected with the native O’odham, Yaqui, and Apache people.
  • El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro National Historic Trail is recognized throughout the United States and Mexico as a timeless route of trade and cultural exchange, with a complicated legacy of 300 years of conflict, cooperation, and cultural exchange between a variety of peoples.
  • Valles Caldera National Preserve encapsulates the story of early Spanish and Mexican settlement across the present-day American Southwest and the socio-political shifts that occurred when the territory was annexed by the United States.

  • John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor has a large and vibrant Latinx community including immigrants from Colombia, Dominican Republic, Guatemala and other Latin American countries who came to work in the area’s factories in the 1970s. Water from the river has fueled industry and employment opportunities for more than 200 years and ethnic influences from around the globe are reflected in the area’s natural and cultural attractions.

  • National Mall and Memorial Parks features several monuments that commemorate the contributions of Latino leaders who brought freedom and change throughout the Americas and played important roles in the history of the United States.

Four people sit by a tent in a grassy field that overlooks a valley, with a large mountain in the distance.
Camping at Denali National Park & Preserve.

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Have fun in a national park.

Find a park and go for a walk, hike, picnic, scenic drive, camping trip, or get involved in stewardship and conservation efforts in parks. Whatever you do, be safe and Plan Like A Park Ranger! Find planning tips and tools on our website or in the NPS app to make sure your only surprises are happy ones.

A male NPS employee in uniform stands next to a male intern wearing an LHIP polo, nametag, and hat
A Latino Heritage Internship Program (LHIP) intern having fun while on the job at Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument.

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Join us - volunteer, do an internship, or work for us!

Diversity and inclusion within our organization is important so that our workforce can reflect the communities that we serve. Throughout the nation, Hispanic/Latinx NPS employees, volunteers and interns are working diligently to help preserve and protect our natural, cultural and recreational resources. Find out how to join our team this Hispanic Heritage Month.

A black and white photo of a man in a suit and tie, looking at the camera
George Melendez Wright left a lasting impact on the National Park Service.

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Learn about the father of wildlife management in the NPS, George Melendez Wright.

Wright’s many contributions to the NPS are as valuable today as they were a century ago. Wright organized, and even initially funded, the first NPS wildlife surveys, leading to the establishment of the Wild Life Division in 1933. Thousands of images from those surveys and others from the NPS Wildlife Division Photo File are now available online. His legacy lives today through the hard work, dedication, and passion of natural resource managers and scientists.

A woman in an NPS uniform helps a small girl stamp her Junior Ranger badge.
Helping a new Junior Ranger stamp her badge at San Antonio Missions National Historical Park.

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Explore los programas de jóvenes guardabosques en Español (Explore Junior Ranger activity books in Spanish).

Kids can become jóvenes arqueólogos (Junior Archeologists) and exploradores subacuáticos (Junior Ranger Underwater Explorers). Several parks offer Spanish-language resources: El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro National Historic Trail, San Antonio Missions National Historical Park, Everglades National Park and Rocky Mountain National Park.

An NPS employee in uniform films another employee in uniform with a cell phone.
Superintendent Naomi Torres and Park Ranger Daniel Sanchez of the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail.

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Meet some of our Hispanic/Latinx employees.

Some are superintendents, park biologists, historians, architects, park rangers. Learn about the variety of career paths and experiences from NPS employees of Hispanic or Latinx backgrounds and get inspired to work with us!

A hiker with a backpack and hat stands at an overlook above a forested valley with a river through it.
Getting fresh air at Yellowstone National Park.

Martin Stohr.

Tap into the Power of Parks for Health.

With at least one national park in every state, there are plenty of opportunities for visitors of all backgrounds to find a nearby national park and experience the health benefits of spending time outdoors this Hispanic Heritage Month.

A woman poses for a photo while on a trail in a forest.
Having fun in Glacier National Park.

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Share your own experiences and get inspired.

Use #HispanicHeritageMonth #FindYourPark, #EncuentraTuParque on social media to tell us why and how you are celebrating your Hispanic/Latinx heritage this month.

A two story building with a large, colorful mural.
The Mission Cultural Center San Francisco is one of the sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Photo courtesy of California State Historic Preservation Office

Visit historic places near you.

Just about every county in the country has at least one site in the National Register of Historic Places. Many listings recognize the contributions of Hispanic/Latinx people, culture and notable achievements: Freedom Tower in Miami, Casa Amadeo in New York, Guadalupe Center in Missouri, Women's Building in California, Bullion Plaza School in Arizona.

A photo of a woman in conversation.
Dolores Huerta in 2009, after giving a talk at the University of Chicago.

Photo (cropped) by Eric Guo, CC-BY-2.0 (Wikimedia).

Meet influential Latinas and Latinos throughout history.

Learn about some of the notable Hispanic/Latinx figures like Dolores Huerta, Dr. Helen Rodríguez Trías, Ynes Mexia, and more.

About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 423 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at, and on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.

Last updated: September 15, 2021