Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
Seasoned backpacker and adventurer Yang Lu earned the grand prize in the 2015 Share the Experience photo contest with this image of a sunburst captured at sunrise in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah. Yang has made the outdoors part of his daily life and finds deep connection to the land through his lens.
“My photography is not just for recreation, it is to inspire people to explore these areas." -- Yang Lu
Photo by Yang Lu (www.sharetheexperience.org).
The plantings of cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the People of the United States from the People of Japan. In Japan, the flowering cherry tree, or "Sakura," is an exalted flowering plant. The beauty of the cherry blossom is a potent symbol equated with the evanescence of human life and epitomizes the transformation of Japanese culture throughout the ages.
The Department of the Interior has unveiled its new Web site design at www.doi.gov with an emphasis on increased openness and accessibility as well as new visual and interactive dynamics.
“Our department's new Web site will help us better share Interior's remarkable story with the American people,” Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar said. “It offers new and exciting ways for Americans to discover how the work we do touches the land, water and people in every corner of our country.”
“Our new Web site has a cleaner look, room for more video and photos and interactive elements, better organization and an increased focus on openness with you, the American public,” said Director of Communications Betsy Hildebrandt. “New Media Director Katelyn Sabochik and her team have worked with the departmental Information Technology team to set a new standard for government Web sites.”
Navigation has improved on the Web site, Sabochik noted. The accordion menus on the left keep information just a click or two away, sorted to help people find what they need faster. The drop-down menus above sort the site by organizational structure and mission.
“The site should be more accessible than ever,” Sabochik emphasized. “Each page has controls for adjusting text size, our new videos have closed captions and our audio segments come with transcripts.”
The new DOI.gov has a sense of expansiveness—it takes up more room on the screen than the old site to make use of the increased resolution of modern computer displays. That leaves more room for pictures, video and future interactive elements, as well as text.
The site continues to provide news and links related not only to the Secretary's office and departmental offices but also to other government Web sites--including those of Interior's bureaus and offices—the Bureau of Indians Affairs; National Park Service; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Bureau of Land Management; Bureau of Reclamation; Minerals Management Service; Office of Surface Mining; and others.
The mission of the U.S. Department of the Interior is to protect America's natural resources and heritage, honor our cultures and tribal communities, and supply the energy to power our future.