Outer Banks History Center Announces NPS Centennial Events
In honor of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the National Park Service in 1916, the Outer Banks History Center is partnering with the National Park Service Outer Banks Group to present a new exhibit, Explore Your Outer Banks Parks: Celebrating a Century of the National Park Service in the History Center Gallery in Manteo.
All are invited to the free opening reception hosted by the Friends of the Outer Banks History Center March 4, from 5:30 to 7:30pm.
A highlight of the evening will be the unveiling of a painting by Washington, D.C. artist Louise Phillips at 6pm.
Learn about the establishment of Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Fort Raleigh National Historic Site, and Wright Brothers National Memorial and how a quiet, nearly deserted coastal region has become a beehive of activity and an entertainment destination.
Highlights through the years and community engagement will be showcased via photographs, artwork, artifacts and documents from the archives of both partnering organizations.
In keeping with the National Park Service’s motto for the centennial, “Find Your Park,” themes of the exhibit are: “Find Your Treasure at Cape Hatteras National Seashore!,” “Find Your Heritage at Fort Raleigh Historic Site!” and “Find Your Inspiration at Wright Brothers National Memorial!”
In recent times, the Outer Banks has become known as the “Land of Beginnings.” These three sites embody that concept.
Cape Hatteras National Seashore was the nation’s first national seashore. It was proposed in 1933 by artist, outdoorsman and visionary Frank Stick who realized what an important ecosystem the area embodied and convinced others to preserve it for all time. Without the park, the entire Outer Banks would likely have been developed and hundreds of miles of unspoiled beaches and wildlife habitat might have been lost.
Fort Raleigh Historic Site preserves the site of the earliest attempt by England to establish a permanent colony in the New World. Preceding Jamestown and Plymouth by several decades, and short-lived, it is noteworthy for the birth of the first English child, Virginia Dare, August 18, 1587. This site also preserves the cultural heritage of Native Americans, European Americans and African-American who have lived on Roanoke Island.
Wright Brothers National Memorial recognizes man’s first sustained, powered flight as accomplished by Orville and Wilbur Wright December 17, 1903. Preservation efforts at the site and the construction of a monument led to the building of bridges and paved roads, which transformed the entire region from a sparsely populated and largely unknown area to a present-day vacation and retreat destination.
Louise Phillips has donated her painting to the Cape Hatteras National Seashore museum collection in honor of the 2016 Centennial. The 4’ x 4’ acrylic on canvas titled, “Outer Banks,” features a seashore scene showcasing the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse and recreational activities.
Phillips is passionate about bringing youth and the environment together through the arts. She has authored several children’s books and her paintings reside in public places across the United States. In addition to Cape Hatteras, she has created paintings for Grand Canyon National Park and Glacier National Park in honor of the National Park Service Centennial.
Following its debut on the evening of March 4, Explore Your Outer Banks Parks: Celebrating a Century of the National Park Service will be on display from March 5 through December 31, 2016.