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.
Through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, we are investing $500 million in improvements to American Indian and Alaska Native communities that will enhance their long-term economic development potential and promote near-term economic recovery. These investments will make a real difference by providing funds to fix schools, upgrade housing, build new roads and create new jobs.
Through the Indian Affairs Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development, we are providing assistance to tribal communities with managing and developing their renewable and non-renewable energy resources and helping them with stimulating job creation, workforce training and economic development.
Through the Indian Affairs Office of Facilities, Environmental and Cultural Resources Management, we are creating improved, safe learning environments for students in Bureau of Indian Education schools, building new homes, improving and repairing reservation roads and improving Bureau of Indian Affairs-funded detention facilities.