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HVNP, Haleakalā National Park Celebrate Founding With Fee-Free Day

July 27, 2021, 6:30 AM HST
* Updated July 26, 2:57 PM
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Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park will celebrate its founding 105 years ago with an entrance-free day to some of the most unique and pristine locations of the Big Island.

Considered HVNP’s sister-park, Haleakalā National Park on Maui will also participate in the entrance-free day. The parks were founded as one and called Hawaii National Park in 1916. It wasn’t until 1961 that Haleakalā National Park became its own park.

“There is a strong feeling of ʻohana between Hawaiʻi Volcanoes and Haleakalā,” said Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park Superintendent Rhonda Loh. “Both parks kōkua each other, sharing staff to assist with fires, eruptions, increased visitation or whatever comes up. The only thing that separates us is the ʻAlenuihāhā Channel,” Loh said.

Both parks share commonalities between their flora and fauna. Rare silverswords, the Hawaiian goose the nēnē and volcanic summits are found in both parks.

“From mauka to makai, our island communities have deep connections to these special places,” said Haleakalā National Park Superintendent Natalie Gates. “Aug. 1 is a day for us to celebrate both parks with the folks who help us mālama ʻāina.”

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Haleakalā and Hawaiʻi Volcanoes also share a non-profit partner, the Hawaiʻi Pacific Parks Association, which operates educational stores in both parks, and will feature special birthday offerings on August 1. Store proceeds support park programs.

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Two publications now available online, “Fire on the Rim: the Creation of Hawai‘i National Park,” and “Gathering on the Rim: People Build a Park,” reveal the fascinating and complex history of Hawai‘i National park and its philanthropic partners.

The US National Park Service also turns 105 on Aug. 25, creating the opportunity for another fee-free day for both parks. Additional fee-free days this year are Aug. 4 (the first anniversary of the Great American Outdoors Act); Sept. 25 (National Public Lands Day); and Nov. 11 (Veterans Day).

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