Category Archives: National Park Service

National Park Service Looking for Sponsors to Raise Money

Millions of people visit the National Parks each year, but park officals say that visitors fees are not enough to keep the parks open. That is why, accordign to a recent article on WBAL TV’s online website, the National Park service is considering selling sponserships to help keep the parks open.

The proposal would allow sponsors to put logos on just about everything, including bathrooms, benches, and the pavement under people’s feet. For most people this would take away from the pristine beauty of the parks. People come to the parks to experience nature and get away from the crass commercialism and noise that comes with everyday life.

While their is no certainty that the proposal will get approved, it is clear that the push for corporate sponsors is a troubling one, particularly for many of the park’s regular visitors. The money from corportate sponsors could help the National Park system make some much anticipated and much needed improvments in order to ensure that none of the parks are closed to the public. Fort Hood in Baltimore, for example hopes to add a piece of the National Anthem that they are missing.

A decision like this could set a terrible precident. Old stadiums were once great exampls of classic architecture, but today, stadiums are often covered in as much advertising as possible. Many people think that this is very distracting and takes away from their enjoyment of the game. Decline in the attendance at certain sporting events certainly supports this theory to an extent. While the temporary influx of money into the National Parks System would be welcome it is very important to consider the cost.

National Park Service Might Sell Corporate Sponsorship to Rename Classic Parks

National parks could soon be splattered with new colors, new signs and new looks. Instead of the classic Grand Canyon, visitors could drive up to see the bright yellow and red McDonalds Grand Canyon sign. Nothing is set in stone, but national parks are considering selling their naming rights and corporate sponsorships.

Millions of visitors flow into national parks each year, but there is an $11 billion backlog of maintenance projects and a lack of overall funding. Parks want to attract a diverse, younger crowd. Many of these national treasures have remained the same for decades. For some visitors the classic look and feel is part of America’s legacy. Some visitors feel national parks should be funded by state and federal governments instead of reaching out to corporations. Some fear corporations will make the appearance of parks littered and take away from the history.

The National Park Service Director’s Order No. 21 details the consideration of naming rights and corporate sponsorship. Logo displays can be places on every park fixture, but the parks will not be renamed. This means there will not be a Pizza Hut Yellowstone National Park. The rooms inside the park, the vehicles, benches, paving stones and landscaped areas can be renamed. Logos and colors can be placed throughout the park. A red and white Coca Cola Fort McHenry garden inside the park might seem strange, but the National Park Service promises it would bring in more money for a better park experience.

Some National Park employees say this type of funding will help pay for landscaping, museum and restroom upgrades, public demonstrations and bus rides for city school visits. Critics fear corporations will begin to take over not only the look of the park, but how they operate. The classic look and feel could be diminished.