OUR NATIONAL PARKS:

"Sunrise to Sunset"
and
"The Four Seasons"

Two PBS Specials produced by Encounter Video

In God's wildness lies the hope of the world.

John Muir

They are a perennial theme, and they are breathtaking: OUR NATIONAL PARKS. Explore them as never before in Part I: SUNRISE TO SUNSET and Part II: THE FOUR SEASONS, where America's wilderness comes alive. In the burgeoning of more super highways, more sprawling housing developments, more shopping centers and more motels, these parks are our sanctuaries. They are reminders that such treasures should be preserved and enjoyed by all generations. Both Pledge programs are curently airing nationwie on PBS. Check your local listings for dates and times in your area.

 SUNRISE TO SUNSET, traces the sun's course, from the first hushed moments of dawn to dusk's final glow – we set out with the sun from Maine to the Florida Everglades where the sun "flows over the land with the patience of honey." Such parks are not only havens for animals, but for people as well. The parks have changed peoples' lives. One such symbiotic relationship is that of Marjory Stoneman Douglas who in the 1920's fought to save the Florida Everglades. Through her inexhaustible efforts, the area once perceived as a wasteland is preserved today as a paradise found.

Marjory Stoneman Douglas was one of many who found renewal in the wilderness. Horace Kephart, a librarian, championed the Great Smokey Mountains and preserved its trails of old. Twenty-six year old Theodore Roosevelt, mourning the deaths of his wife and mother, found healing and space in the rugged Dakota Badlands. This land of wild beauty is now known as the Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota. An ailing 14 –year old Enos Mills took to the Colorado high-country where he was healed and became a Rocky Mountain guru. William O. Douglas, former Supreme Court Justice, was rejuvenated by the rugged land of Olympic, Washington.

The sun is inclusive, shining on land and beast alike. In SUNRISE TO SUNSET the sun illuminates sundry National Parks: Voyageurs in Minnesota; The Grand Tetons; Yellowstone; Canyonlands in Utah; The Grand Canyon; Crater Lake in Oregon; Mount Rainier; Yosemite; Saguaro in Arizona; Olympic in Washington and the Haleakala and Hawaii Volcanoes in the Hawaiian Islands.

 In THE FOUR SEASONS a budding tree is transformed into a haven of green shade into a blaze of reds and gold into black, bare branches softened by snow. It is how we measure our days.

Spring. The Redwood dells in California burst with wildflowers. Sleepy bears lumber from their dens in Katmai, Alaska. Summer follows exuberantly, the air thick with activity. Young mountain goats frolic in the meadows of Glacier National Park. It is an endless high noon in the Death Valley desert, with relief only in the still, cool hours of night. At Mt. Rushmore, on the Fourth of July, a dazzling show of fireworks heralds the summer's climax.

Fall is a time of reflection. In the mists of autumn, we visit Gettysburg memorial cemetery, Lincoln's consecrated ground. In the Olympics, salmon spawn upstream. Herds of caribou journey through the Gates of the Arctic. A cold snap, a first snowfall and winter settles in. There are bitter storms on the high plateau of Yellowstone. Eagles forage for food in Alaska. Whales migrate to Hawaiian waters. Snow edges the Grand Canyon and cloaks the hoodoos in Utah.

Through the suns waxing and waning and the seasons' transformations, all that inhabit the earth are touched and themselves changed. It is to this that OUR NATIONAL PARKS pays tribute.

These programs are co-productions of Encounter Video and Oregon Public Broadcasting, funded by PBS


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