This weekend, I join adventurers Jack and Colton on-screen for a trip off the beaten path, among ancient art and millions of stars
Jack Steward and Colton Smith are introducing new audiences to national parks each week with their Daytime Emmy Award-winning ABC show, “Rock the Park.” I was privileged to join them in Mojave National Preserve in California, to talk to them about NPCA and this hidden gem of the Southwest. These 1.6 million acres are home to curious wildlife, ancient petroglyphs and the largest Joshua tree forest in the world, and I enjoyed helping to introduce the fun-loving adventurers to this special place where three of the four major U.S. deserts meet.
Here’s a brief clip from Saturday’s show, which I was proud to be part of.
Perhaps the biggest highlight of this visit to Mojave was getting to attend the park’s annual star party for the first time. About a dozen youth from Los Angeles joined us, many of whom had never been to a national park before — one even said he had never truly seen the stars before. Members of the Old Town Sidewalk Astronomers set up telescopes and eagerly explained some of the mysteries of the universe to us. The pure enjoyment everyone shared at this rare glimpse of dark night skies reinforced for me many of the reasons why I work to preserve national parks and the inspirational experiences in nature they provide. I hope “Rock the Park” viewers this weekend will become motivated to plan their own trips to this fascinating part of America.
Learn more about “Rock the Park” and find local show times at http://www.littonweekendadventure.com/rock-the-park/.
About the author
Theresa Pierno President and CEO
Theresa Pierno is President and CEO of the National Parks Conservation Association. She joined NPCA in 2004 after a distinguished career in public service and natural resource protection, and has helped to solidify the organization's role as the voice of America's national parks.