ALBANY, N.Y. (WWTI) – On Wednesday, August 2, New York Governor Kathy Hochul previewed a year-long celebration of the centennial anniversary of the founding of New York’s statewide park and historic site system.

 The celebration will both highlight and build upon one of New York State’s greatest environmental legacies. Then-governor Alfred Smith and the state legislature created the New York State Council of Parks. Voters then approved a $15 million bond act to make the state park system possible.

“As we celebrate through next year, New York will continue to invest in our park system to support the State’s outdoor recreation economy, expand access to underserved communities, address the impacts of climate change, and position New York State as a top recreation destination.”

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul

New York will commemorate the state park anniversary with hundreds of community celebrations, performances and special events led by the state park and historic site staff.

There will be a new Centennial Challenge to encourage visitors to try a variety of new activities as they enjoy the parks and historic sites, special discounts on park admission fees and new opportunities to volunteer and promote park stewardship

A traveling state park exhibit will also make its way across the state and be shown at parks and historic sites throughout the state.  New Yorkers can visit to learn more about the Centennial.

There will also be an emphasis on raising capacity in parks, reaching new audiences, dealing with climate chage, making New York a recreation destination and strengthening community partnerships.