READ THIS! Former National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis’ message regarding Trump:

READ THIS!

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From the Association of National Park Rangers (US)
Former National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis’ message regarding Trump:
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This morning former Director Jon Jarvis made this statement about recent events involving the National Park Service:

“I have been watching the Trump administration trying unsuccessfully to suppress the National Park Service with a mix of pride and amusement. The NPS is the steward of America’s most important places and the narrator of our most powerful stories, told authentically, accurately, and built upon scientific and scholarly research. The Park Ranger is a trusted interpreter of our complex natural and cultural history and a voice that cannot not be suppressed. Edicts from on-high have directed the NPS to not talk about “national policy”, but permission is granted to use social media for visitor center hours and safety. The ridiculousness of such a directive was immediately resisted and I am not the least bit surprised. So at Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site in Atlanta should we not talk about his actions to secure the rights to vote for African Americans in the south, or is that too “national policy”? At Stonewall National Monument in New York City, shall we only talk about the hours you can visit the Inn or is it “national policy” to interpret the events there in 1969 that gave rise to the LGBT movement? Shall we only talk about the historic architecture of the Washington, DC home of Alice Paul and Alva Belmont or is it too “national policy” to suggest their decades of effort to secure the rights of women can be linked directly to the women’s marches in hundreds of cities last weekend? And as we scientifically monitor the rapid decline of glaciers in Glacier National Park, a clear and troubling indicator of a warming planet, shall we refrain from telling this story to the public because the administration views climate change as “national policy”? These are not “policy” issues, they are facts about our nation, it is how we learn and strive to achieve the ideals of our founding documents. To talk about these facts is core to the mission of the NPS. During the Centennial of the National Park Service, we hosted over 300 million visitors (now that is huge) to the National Parks and most came away inspired, patriotic and ready to speak on behalf of the values we hold most dear. The new Administration would be wise to figure out how to support the National Park Service, its extraordinary employees and their millions of fans.”

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Kilauea meets the sea. Volcanoes National Park – Big Island Hawaii

JOIN NOW! You don’t have to be a park ranger to “Like” what they stand for – or even to join ANPR as a full-fledged member! The have categories for park employees, students and park supporters. http://www.anpr.org (RIGHT CLICK and “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW”)

NOTE: A freeze on federal government hiring was instituted on January 24, 2017 by executive order. The memo, which does not apply to military personnel, states that “no vacant positions existing at noon on January 22, 2017, may be filled and no new positions may be created, except in limited circumstances”

Trump put a freeze on federal government hiring, and it could seriously impact the National Park Service and the need to hire thousands of seasonal rangers and other employees for the summer! Beyond seasonal positions, there are many permanent positions that parks are trying to fill and people who have already been offered permanent jobs but haven’t begun working… this will definitely affect the visitor experience and park safety!

Hawaii 28 - Hana Maui

Waimoku Falls – Haleakala National Park in Hana-Maui, Hawaii

DON’T LET THEM SELL OUR FEDERAL LANDS
TO THE LOGGING, MINING & OIL COMPANIES!

PROTECT THE ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT!
CLIMATE CHANGE IS REAL! (NOT A HOAX)

http://www.sierraclub.org
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“O beautiful for spacious skies, For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties. Above the fruited plain! 
America! America! G-d shed his grace on thee.”
– America the Beautiful
from a poem written by Katharine Lee Bates in 1893
(after a visit to Pikes Peak in Colorado)
music composed by Samuel A. Ward

Pikes Peak, named in honor of American explorer Zebulon Pike, is one of the highest summit of the Rocky Mountains in North America. The 14,115-foot mountain top is located in Pike National Forest, 12 miles southwest of downtown Colorado Springs. The summit of Pikes Peak is a high alpine environment with a polar climate due to its elevation. Snowfall is possible year round at the top and thunderstorms are common in the summertime. Pikes Peak, above 14000 feet, was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1961.

http://www.nps.gov
Yosemite 39

JoshWillTravel in the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias – Yosemite National Park

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Yosemite, California

JoshWillTravel in Yosemite National Park (Wawona Tunnel Picture Point)

 

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Another answer: Places to stay for Anaheim Convention Centre? Places to stay in L.A., preferably with a pool?

NOTE: This was a question with a very particular requirement, but the information in the answer can be helpful to anyone visiting Los Angeles or Anaheim!

Q: Best places to stay for Star Wars 2015 Anaheim Convention Centre? 

Q: Looking for suggestions of places to stay in L.A., preferably with a pool?

“My son is travelling to California (from Jersey, Channel Islands, United Kingdom) in April 2015 to attend the Star Wars Convention. He and his friends are arriving into LAX around 4 April and leaving the day after the convention on 20 April – the convention runs from 16-19 April….Rather than being stuck out at the convention centre, however, it seems that it takes 2 hours and many changes on public transport to get to convention centre area from Long Beach which is too long. Due to ages of travellers (16-22) hiring a car is probably going to be a no no! Could maybe consider staying in LA for the first part and moving to a hotel near the convention centre for the 2nd part. I’m sure a trip to Disneyland will be on the cards too. My son is blind and has some mobility issues so its useful to bear that in mind. Any info on places/areas to stay and getting around would be very appreciated. Thanks, Emma” ~ Emma T., Jersey, United Kingdom

LAX - Theme Building (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

LAX – Theme Building (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

A: Special Needs Travelers shouldn’t worry about visiting Los Angeles or Anaheim. It just takes proper planning and a good companion. Your son’s blindness and mobility issues shouldn’t prevent him from having a great time in California.

Pico Medical Supply – 6035 W Pico Blvd, L.A., CA 90035 (323) 936-4104 http://www.picomedical.com  If you need a wheelchair (electric or standard), they have the best rental rates. They can also supply other mobility and special needs equipment.

Braille Institute Of America is a good resource if you need information about Los Angeles for the blind. (it’s FREE!) 741 N Vermont Ave, L.A., CA 90029 (323) 663-1111 email: la@brailleinstitute.org http://www.brailleinstitute.org/los-angeles-home-page.html 

Los Angeles Visitor Info: http://www.discoverlosangeles.com

City of Los Angeles Dept on Disability: http://disability.lacity.org

LAX has a Guide for Individuals with Disabilities and provides transportation from gate to curb for Special Needs Travelers 310-337-5005 http://www.lawa.aero

4 April – Arrive LAX Los Angeles International

Free Shuttle to Custom Hotel from LAX, they have accessible rooms if required, and there are places to eat and shop within one block of the hotel. Custom Hotel: 8639 Lincoln Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90045 jdvhotels.com (310) 645-0400

Custom Hotel (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Custom Hotel (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Taxi or use Lyft or Uber car service. The Bus Stop is one block away. Journey up Lincoln Blvd to Marina Del Rey, Venice Beach and Santa Monica. (see my other answers for things to do) Culver City has lots of restaurants and things to do as well.

Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority (“the Metro”): Metro Bus & Rail http://www.metro.net – http://www.metro.net/riding/riders-disabilities

Metro strives to ensure that its services (over 200 bus & rail routes) are fully accessible to those with disabilities. To assist those with visual impairments, Metro provides Braille-encoded and large type “Metro Flash Cards” for signaling the correct bus. For information please call 213.922.7023.

Metro is also the primary funding source for Access Services Incorporated, the federally-required ADA paratransit service. This service is offered to individuals whose disabilities prevent them from independently using regular bus or rail service. It’s comparable to fixed-route service and offers 24-hours curb-to-curb service. For information, call Access Services Incorporated at 1.800.827.0829

8 April – 14 April: 6 more days to relocate to another hotel and explore other areas of the city (Hollywood or Downtown L.A. are two good options for destinations, see previous Blogs for details and answers)

Transportation from Los Angeles to Anaheim: Greyhound goes from Union Station via Downtown L.A. to Anaheim for under $20.

Greyhound Bus Lines 1716 E 7th St, Los Angeles, CA 90021 (213) 629-8401 http://www.greyhound.com

14 April – 15 April Disneyland & California Adventure

16 April – 19 April Anaheim Convention Center

Hilton Anaheim, Anaheim Marriott and the Disneyland Hotel are good choices and close to the Convention Center and Disneyland

Disneyland Guest Services: 714-781-4565 https://disneyland.disney.go.com/guest-services/guests-with-disabilities/  Visit the website for “Guests with Disability” info and downloadable guides to the park and services.

Disneyland Fireworks!

Disneyland Fireworks!

Transportation from Anaheim to LAX: return to Union Station via Greyhound and then take the Metro train direct to LAX.

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ADA AMENDMENTS ACT OF 2008

An Act To restore the intent and protections of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/statutes/ada.cfm http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/statutes/adaaa.cfm

The Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board shall issue minimum guidelines that shall supplement the existing Minimum Guidelines and Requirements for Accessible Design….supplemental guidelines issued under subsection (a) of this section shall establish additional requirements, consistent with this chapter, to ensure that buildings, facilities, rail passenger cars, and vehicles are accessible, in terms of architecture and design, transportation, and communication, to individuals with disabilities.

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SNG CERTIFIED ACCESSIBLE TRAVEL ADVOCATE

SNG CERTIFIED ACCESSIBLE TRAVEL ADVOCATE

Today is the 25th Anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre in China!

Today is the 25th Anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre in China!

The Tiananmen Square protests in spring of 1989 by the “89 Democracy Movement” were student demonstrations against the government with popular support from city residents in Beijing, China.

NOTE: This Blog will not be available in China due to Government Censorship!

Tiananmen Square

The Forbidden City – Tiananmen Square – Beijing, China

When they want to sell you a tour to China, they’ll show you pictures of the Great Wall, the Yangtze River, Panda Bears, The Three Gorges Dam and of course, the Forbidden City.

Tiananmen Square

Imperial Lion Statue in Tiananmen Square – Beijing, China

They want you to remember the Beijing Olympics in 2008:

The Bird's Nest - Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony

The Bird’s Nest – 2008 Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony

The 2008 Beijing Games were the most watched Olympics in history, attracting 4.7 billion viewers worldwide and earning entry into the Guinness World Records.

I remember:

The Bird's Nest - Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony

Thousands of Drummers in The Bird’s Nest – Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony

If you visit Tiananmen Square today, you would never know what happened there twenty five years ago……

Tiananmen Square

Tiananmen Square – Beijing, China

In spring of 1989, student demonstrators occupied Tiananmen Square for seven weeks. The protest was ended when hardline leaders declared martial law on May 20 and ordered the military to enforce martial law and mobilize as many as 300,000 troops in the capital. The crackdown that occurred on June 3 & 4 became known as the Tiananmen Square Massacre, and is commonly known as the June Fourth Incident in China.

Tiananmen Square

“Tank  Man” v. Chinese Military – Tiananmen Square, Beijing, China – June 4th 1989

Chinese troops with assault rifles and tanks inflicted casualties on unarmed civilians trying to block the military’s advance. The image of one unidentified unarmed man standing immobile in the square facing down a column of tanks speaks a thousand words. Moments later the tanks would crush and kill him.

Tiananmen Square

“Tank Man” v. Chinese Military – Tiananmen Square, Beijing, China – June 4th 1989

The Chinese government condemned the protest as a “counter-revolutionary riot”, and has prohibited all forms of discussion of the protest or remembrance of the Massacre. Any and all references to the events have been censored from state media, the internet, schools, universities and modern history.

Tiananmen Square censorship mocked by "The Simpsons"

Tiananmen Square Massacre censorship mocked by “The Simpsons”

To date, many aspects of the events remain unknown or unconfirmed because of Chinese censorship. Estimates of the death toll range from a few hundred to thousands of people.

NOTE: THE NEXT IMAGE IS EXTREMELY GRAPHIC. (and it’s the hard truth)

Tiananmen Square Massacre - June 4, 1989

Tanks and Dead Protesters – Tiananmen Square Massacre – Beijing, China – June 4, 1989

Something to consider before you book your next trip to the People’s Republic of China, or decide to buy or promote your company with cheap SWAG that’s “Made in China”.

NOTE: This Blog will not be available in China due to Government Censorship!

Tiananmen Square

Tiananmen Square Memorial in Dominikanski Square in Wroclaw, Poland

p.s. Remember that incredible Bird’s Nest Olympic Stadium from the opening ceremonies in 2008? Here it is, present day, a 40 billion dollar ruin. The workers are picking trash out of the water in this picture from 2013:

Bird's Nest Stadium - Beijing, China

Abandoned Bird’s Nest Olympic Stadium – Beijing, China – 2013

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