The American Memorial Park in Garapan recorded 81,171 visits in 2016, the National Park Service’s centennial year.
“Every day American Memorial Park welcomes our local community, visitors from across the country and around the world,” said superintendent Jim Richardson. “In 2016, we saw a 25-percent increase in visitors to the park from 2015.”
“Stunning,” said acting National Park Service director Michael T. Reynolds of the 331 million visits counted across the National Park System. “We expected more visitors in 2016 as the NPS celebrated its centennial with special events and activities, but these numbers really show the depth of feeling people have for their national parks, especially considering that increased visitation was recorded not just at the biggest and best known parks but at smaller historical and cultural sites as well.”
Half of national park visitation happened in 26 parks, but visitation growth from 2015 to 2016 was greater, by 13 percent to 9 percent, in parks that see more modest annual visits.
“That shows the breadth of support for parks and, I think,” Reynolds said, “the Find Your Park/Encuentra Tu Parque campaign launched with the National Park Foundation reached new audiences but also highlighted what we might call lesser-known parks.”
Last year was also an exciting year for volunteers. Last year, American Memorial Park worked with over 300 volunteers who gave over 1,200 hours of their time to help further the mission of the park.
American Memorial Park was established in 1978 to honor the American and Marianas people who gave their lives during the Battle for the Marianas during World War II. (NPS)