People visit sites throughout the United States for a variety of reasons. New Orleans for Mardis Gras; Orlando for theme parks such as Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, SeaWorld, LegoLand, GatorLand; Manhattan for Broadway plays, and so on.
The more adventurous travelers are also collectors – the people who want to climb all the mountains over 14,000 feet high in Colorado or in California (called the Fourteeners), or those who want to visit every single National Park Service site in the United States.
There are 417 such sites, and according to an article in today’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle (the Sunday March 26, 2017 edition).
Although it’s possible to take photos of yourself on the summit of each of the Fourteeners you climb, or digging into a hot fudge sundae at Dairy Queen or McDonalds (if your goal is to eat a hot fudge sundae in every DQ or McDonalds in every state in the Union), what’s special about visiting all the National Park Service sites is that you can purchase passports for each National Park region (Alaska Region, Northeast Region, Intermountain Region, Midwest Region, National Capital Region., Pacific-West Region and Southeast Region, and have them stamped at each site.
What a fun collection of souvenirs those passports would be. But there’s more “collectibles” at each site, such as tokens and stretched pennies, for which you can purchase collector albums as well – which makes it easy to keep all your souvenirs in one place.
Stretched Pennies Tip
If you collect stretched pennies, make sure you carry a supply of gleaming new pennies and a supply of quarters. The stretched penny machines typically costs 50 cents, and a penny, for one stretched penny.
Buying one specific type of souvenir at each National Park Service site you visit (or any site you visit, for that matter!) is a fun way to both “collect” memories and souvenirs, as well as give a directed goal to your travels.