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.
Salazar Joins Postmaster General Potter to Celebrate America's Great Outdoors
Office of the Secretary
New Book Celebrating America's National Parks Released
Last edited 4/25/2016
WASHINGTON – Marking the launch of the Obama Administration's America's Great Outdoors initiative as well as National Park Week, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar joined Postmaster General John Potter to release a new book celebrating the history of our national parks and featuring the postage stamps that have been issued over time to commemorate them.
The new book, The Grandest Things: Our National Parks in Words, Images, and Stamps, was produced by the U.S. Postal Service and the National Park Service.
Salazar said the new book underscored President Obama's Great Outdoors Initiative inaugurated earlier this month at the White House Conference on America's Great Outdoors. The president signed a Presidential Memorandum to promote and support innovative community-level efforts to conserve outdoor spaces and to reconnect Americans to the outdoors.
“I can think of no better way to help kick off the President's Great Outdoors Initiative and celebrate National Parks Week than to make available a book that combines two of America's great passions: our love of beautiful and historic places and our enthusiasm for telling our nation's story through our postage stamps,” Salazar said. “I hope that all Americans will be inspired to visit our parks and especially to take their children to see these wonderful places that lift our spirits and connect us to the natural world and our nation's history.”
"Through the stamp program, the Postal Service has always recognized the importance of our national parks," Potter said. "And in recent decades, we've recognized the need to treat our entire natural environment with the same measure of care and respect. We have an Office of Sustainability that is dedicated to this purpose. Two days from today, it will lead us in the celebration of the 40th anniversary of Earth Day."
The 116-page book tells the fascinating story of America's national parks through stamps and other memorabilia. It includes a visual tour of more than 75 parks and monuments. It also has a special stamp collecting section and comes with nine stamps with mounts, including the 8-cent 1972 Old Faithful/Yellowstone stamp. The book's retail price is $49.95.
Salazar and Potter also participated in the First Day of Issue ceremony for the Scenic American Landscapes post card set that features breathtaking sights from national parks.
Both the book and the postcards will be sold by national park bookstores and philatelic catalogs and websites..