Two of my favorite things about America joined up! From the Grand Canyon to Yosemite to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park to Great Smoky Mountains National Park in my part of the world, the United States has one of the world's great national park collections with spectacular beauty and millions of square miles protected from development. And obviously our longstanding commitment to maintaining a vibrant, open immigration policy (despite the best efforts of xenophones to destroy it) has made us an example to the world.
From the National Park Service:
The National Park Service is partnering with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to hold naturalization ceremonies in more than 20 national parks between September 13 and 24. Nearly 1,000 candidates will take the oath of citizenship during these Constitution Day and Citizenship Week celebrations. The theme for the ceremonies is "Embrace CitizenshipóExperience America through Your National Parks."
"I canít think of places more appropriate to welcome a new generation of American citizens than national parks," said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. "These parks, which are owned by all Americans, are not only places of stunning natural beauty and abundant wildlife, but across this country the nearly 400 national parks preserve our nationís fascinating history and protect our rich cultural heritage. From the Aztec Ruins National Monument in New Mexico to Ellis Island in New York City, national parks ensure our nationís artifacts and records are protected for generations to come."
Naturalization ceremonies will take place under a 3,000 year-old sequoia tree at Kings Canyon, on the rim of the spectacular Grand Canyon, on the Civil War battlefield at Vicksburg Military Park, and at the foot of the reflecting pool at the historic Lincoln Memorial.
"Each year we recognize Constitution Day and Citizenship Day to commemorate the signing of the U.S. Constitution and to reflect on what it means to be a citizen of our great nation," said USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas. "We continue to be enriched by the diversity of our individual backgrounds and we remain united in our respect for the Constitution and the foundational rights and responsibilities it enshrines."
The National Park Service and USCIS recently renewed a formal partnership to enhance citizenship ceremonies by holding them in national parks throughout the country. The agreement helps introduce new citizens to some of the nationís most significant natural resources and cultural heritage sites. These historic and picturesque sites provide an ideal backdrop for citizenship ceremonies, where new citizens can learn about and reflect on American identity and the responsibilities of citizenship.