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Contact: John Dell'Osso, 415-464-5135
Contact: Sharon Rummery, 415-844-5250
Embrace Citizenship – Experience America Through Your National Parks
Point Reyes Station, CA - 16 candidates from 13 countries will become new citizens during a ceremony at Point Reyes National Seashore on Tuesday, October 12, 2010. This is one of more than 20 naturalization ceremonies taking place in national parks during Citizenship Week under a partnership between the National Park Service and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The theme is "Embrace Citizenship – Experience America through your National Parks."
Some of the countries represented by the candidates include Australia, Canada, Chile, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Germany, India, Iran, Italy, Mexico, Nicaragua, Russia and the United Kingdom.
"From the Coast Miwok and Mexican Rancheros to Portuguese dairymen and Irish miners and loggers, Point Reyes has become home to countless immigrants and their children," stated Cicely Muldoon, Superintendent of Point Reyes National Seashore. "We are delighted that we can play a part in welcoming a new generation of American citizens with something that is uniquely American…. The National Park System has been described as America's Best Idea."
The ceremony will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, October 12, at the Bear Valley Picnic Area at Point Reyes National Seashore. Parking is available at the Bear Valley Visitor Center parking lot located adjacent to the picnic area.
"I can't think of places more appropriate to welcome a new generation of American citizens than national parks," said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. "These parks, which are owned by all Americans, are not only places of stunning natural beauty and abundant wildlife, but across this country the nearly 400 national parks preserve our nation's fascinating history and protect our rich cultural heritage. From the Aztec Ruins National Monument in New Mexico to Ellis Island in New York City, national parks ensure our nation's artifacts and records are protected for generations to come."
The National Park Service and USCIS recently renewed a formal partnership to enhance citizenship ceremonies by holding them in national parks throughout the country. The agreement helps introduce new citizens to some of the nation's most significant natural resources and cultural heritage sites. These historic and picturesque sites provide an ideal backdrop for citizenship ceremonies, where new citizens can learn about and reflect on American identity and the responsibilities of citizenship.
"Each year we reflect on what it means to be a citizen of this nation," said USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas. "While we continue to be enriched by our cultural and ethnic diversity, we remain united in our respect for the Constitution and to the foundational rights and responsibilities it represents."
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