All Aboard! The Polar Express comes to life this holiday season as the Mount Hood Railroad rolls out of the station bound for the "North Pole!" Come early and climb aboard with your family to cozy-up and enjoy our festively-decorated vintage train cars. Dancing chefs deliver hot chocolate and a cookie to each guest to savor while music from the Polar Express movie plays en route to the North Pole. Make sure to have your tickets handy, because your conductor will be by shortly to punch each child's ticket. Before arriving at the North Pole, the iconic book, The Polar Express is read as your Chef turns the pages to share the beautiful illustrations in the original book. With the station far away, The Polar Express magically arrives at the outskirts of Santa's North Pole village, where Santa Claus himself and his elves joyously welcome the train! As you stay comfortably settled and warm in your seat, Santa and his helper elf board the train! During the return trip, Santa will greet each child with his signature holiday spirit and the first gift of Christmas: a bell cut from his sleigh. It is said that only children and those who still believe can actually hear the bell ring. Join in the singing as your Chef or Conductor lead Christmas caroling on the 30-minute return trip. For those wanting the magic to last or to do a little Christmas shopping, visit our gift shop in the station for special Polar Express gifts and merchandise. Oh, one last thing, children are encouraged to wear their PJ's; adults who still believe have been known to wear them, too! So, are you coming? All Aboard! (less)... Read more
Americas Best Idea - the national parks - announced the launch of Find Your Park, a public awareness and education campaign celebrating the milestone centennial anniversary of the National Park Service in 2016 and setting the stage for the next 100 years. It's about making great connections, exploring amazing places, discovering open spaces, enjoying affordable vacations and enhancing America's best idea - the national parks! It's all happening in your national parks.
Only 128 of our country's 407 national parks usually charge an entrance fee. So start planning your visit!
If you're planning a trip that includes multiple national parks, you might consider the $80 annual pass that provides entrance to all national parks, national wildlife refuges, national forests, and many other Federal lands-more than 2,000 in all. The America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass is offered free to all active duty military members and their dependents. Information on these and other pass options is available online. (less)... Read more
Junior Ranger programs engage young people in age-appropriate activities that allow them to discover the significance of a specific site, introduce them to the national park system and to the mission of the National Park Service. They reveal to children that these amazing places belong to them. Junior Ranger programs are designed to provide participants with the flexibility to discover and interact with the park at their own pace and within the limits of their visit.
They encourage children and their families to explore things they might otherwise have missed, to get out and walk around, to explore further by visiting specialized programs, park movies, exhibits, trails overlooks, talking to a ranger, and others.
When you get to the park visitor center ask a park ranger or volunteer for a junior ranger booklet if you are between the ages of 6-12 and you can fill it out and earn a badge! (less)... Read more