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I generally try not to get too political here on People + Places + Things. It's simply not the place for such things. However, I'm upset. Really, really upset.

I'm not going to take sides or talk about the various factors leading up to the current government shutdown. Those factors are so debatable and I will have none of that nonsense in this space, but I will use this platform to speak up for what we love.

We love the National Park Service. That love runs deep and I was sad to see them shut down today. Our national parks are an incredible asset and they provide economic stability to neighboring communities. The parks offer learning experiences for both children and adults and inspire people to get out and explore this small section of the planet every, single day.

Obviously, the National Park Service is not the only large entity affected by the shutdown. Many, many people are now furloughed without pay. This is serious business, my friends.

I truly hope everyone involved works to fix this mess with a quickness.

In the mean time, I wanted to share some of my favorite photos and memories from our visits to various national parks over the years. 

Taking in the grandeur of the tall trees in the Redwood National and State Parks - 2013

Taking in the grandeur of the tall trees in the Redwood National and State Parks - 2013

A misty afternoon hike around Bowman Lake in Glacier National Park - 2013

A misty afternoon hike around Bowman Lake in Glacier National Park - 2013

The inspiring view from Glacier Point in Yosemite National Park - 2011

The inspiring view from Glacier Point in Yosemite National Park - 2011

The amazing weather at the summit in Haleakala National Park - 2008

The amazing weather at the summit in Haleakala National Park - 2008

Unbeatable views from the Going-to-the-Sun Road in Glacier National Park - 2013

Unbeatable views from the Going-to-the-Sun Road in Glacier National Park - 2013

Following the most amazing trails in Grand Teton National Park - 2009

Following the most amazing trails in Grand Teton National Park - 2009

Peace and quiet on the banks of Tenaya Lake in Yosemite National Park - 2011

Peace and quiet on the banks of Tenaya Lake in Yosemite National Park - 2011

Wild lilies at the base of giant redwoods in the Redwood National and State Parks - 2013

Wild lilies at the base of giant redwoods in the Redwood National and State Parks - 2013

Sunset in Grand Teton National Park - 2009

Sunset in Grand Teton National Park - 2009

You can learn more about what the government shutdown means for our national parks here

If you love the park system as much as we do, please feel free to share your favorite national park memory in the comment section below, make your voice heard via social media platforms (using the hashtag #KeepParksOpen) and let your elected officials know how you feel about the current state of things.

Who knows... maybe it will make a difference.

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Note: I will be monitoring the comment section on this post closely. If your comment is overtly political, there is a very good chance it won't make it through. Trolls need not apply. This is about the love that we (and millions of other people) have for our national parks and for those who work tirelessly to preserve the natural wonders we seek out regularly.


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