'National Parks: America's Best Idea' Kickoff Party

New York City celebrates national parks and Ken Burns' documentary with a Central Park blowout
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New York City celebrates national parks and Ken Burns' documentary with a Central Park blowout

This weekend, Ken Burns' documentary National Parks: America's Best Idea begins showing on PBS. BACKPACKER's been celebrating all year with non-stop national parks coverage (Smokies, Rocky, Yosemite, Grand Canyon) and Burns even stopped by to drop some knowledge.

Now, New York City is getting into the spirit with a massive blowout party and concert in Central Park on Wednesday: In addition to Burns himself, guests include series narrator Peter Coyote and musical performances from Counting Crows, Gavin DeGraw, Alison Krauss and Union Station, Jose Feliciano, Carole King, and more. Best of all, the whole soiree is free—no tickets required. (We're guessing you'll want to get there early, though; this'll probably be pretty packed.)

The Feel Free celebration goes down at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 23 in Central Park's East Meadow. Burns' doc begins airing Sept. 27 on PBS stations near you.

Also, if you've got a hankering to, I don't know, go and actually see a national park, check out BACKPACKER's comprehensive park pages. And if you're not the camping/hiking type (why are you here, anyway?), concessionaire Aramark is offering a boatload of cheap deals to coincide with Burns' doc.

—Ted Alvarez

Feel Free

via Cold Splinters