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Free entry Sept. 28 at Grand Canyon for public lands day, naturalization ceremony to be held

(Stock photo)

(Stock photo)

GRAND CANYON, Ariz. — National Fossil Day and the 26th anniversary of National Public Lands Day will be celebrated Sept. 28 at Grand Canyon National Park

The park is offering free entry in celebration of National Public Lands Day Sept. 28.

This year, a special celebration of National Fossil Day featuring the rich paleontological heritage of Grand Canyon is being held as one of the park's commemorative centennial events. Officially celebrated Oct. 16, 2019, the National Park Service's main National Fossil Day event will be held at the South Rim Sept. 27 and 28.

National Fossil Day events include a paleontology symposium Sept. 27 at 7:30 p.m. at the Shrine of Ages, featuring four guest speakers discussing shark, invertebrate, and cave fossils, and vertebrate tracks and traces.

Visitors can attend various events and activities on Sept. 28, which include a ranger-led walk discussing the 270-million-year-old marine fossils exposed along the Rim Trail, an interactive photo booth, fossil-themed arts and crafts activities, Q&A sessions with paleontologists, and state and national partner organization booths. The celebration concludes with a special program at 7:30 p.m. at the Shrine of Ages given by the National Park Service's Senior Paleontologist Vincent Santucci.

More information and a schedule is available at

In addition to the events of the day, Grand Canyon National Park and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services are conducting a special Naturalization Ceremony at 10 a.m. at Mather Amphitheater.

Visitors who arrive at Grand Canyon Sept. 28 will be allowed to enter the park free of charge. The fee-free designation does not affect fees for camping, reservations, tours or use of concessions. Those who plan to spend time in the park beyond Sept. 28 will need to pay the regular entrance fee for the remainder of their stay. The next fee-free day will be Nov. 11, in honor of Veterans Day.

The 23rd annual public condor release is also occurring in Northern Arizona Sept. 28 at the Vermilion Cliffs National Monument at 11 a.m. The public is invited to watch The Peregrine Fund release several captive-bred young California Condors into the wild. More information is available at:

Information provided by NPS

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