News Release

NPS Celebrates 103rd Birthday with a Fee Free Day

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Date: August 19, 2019

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore (National Lakeshore) will celebrate the 103rd birthday of the National Park Service (NPS) by offering free admission on Sunday, August 25, 2019. Entrance fees and commercial tour fees will be waived for the day. Other fees such as reservations, camping, and concession fees are not included.

“Birthdays are a time to celebrate and we want everyone to join the party,” said Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Deputy Superintendent Tom Ulrich. “National parks belong to all Americans and offer something for everyone. So plan to visit the National Lakeshore, enjoy a ranger-led activity,  go for a bicycle ride along the Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail, float the Platte or Crystal Rivers, enjoy a hike on one of the many trails, or simply go to a park beach.”

With the creation of Yellowstone National Park in 1872, the United States was the first country to set aside its most significant places as national parks so that they could be enjoyed by all. When President Woodrow Wilson signed legislation that created the NPS on August 25, 1916, there were 37 national parks.

Today, the NPS cares for 419 national parks throughout the country - each one an important part of our collective identity. Some parks commemorate notable people and achievements, others conserve magnificent landscapes and natural wonders, and all provide a place to have fun and learn something. Plan your visit at

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore was established in 1970 to preserve outstanding natural features, including forests, beaches, dune formations, and ancient glacial phenomena in their natural setting and protect them from developments and uses that would destroy the scenic beauty and natural character of the area, for the benefit, inspiration, education, recreation, and enjoyment of the public.

As you find your way through the National Lakeshore, you are encouraged to share your adventures at and on social media using hashtags #FindYourPark and #sleepingbearnps.

Last updated: August 20, 2019

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