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Indiana Department of Natural Resources

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Dept. of Natural Resources

State Parks > Indiana State Parks Centennial Celebration Indiana State Parks Centennial Celebration

McCormick's Creek State Park gatehouse

Indiana State Parks turns 100

When Indiana celebrated its centennial in 1916, Hoosiers received a memorable birthday gift — a brand new state park system. From the establishment of the first state park — McCormick’s Creek (pictured above) — in summer of that year, and the purchase of Turkey Run later in 1916, the system has grown to 32 properties that hosts about 16 million visitors each year. This year, Indiana turns 200 and Indiana State Parks celebrates a century of “making memories naturally” for visitors.

The celebrations kicked off on Dec. 16, 2015, with special events across the state and the proclamation of Indiana State Parks Day by the Governor.

Here’s how you can get involved in our year-long celebration:

Visit centennial and bicentennial activities

Discover where we came from and how we got here

Inspire and leave a legacy for the future generations

  • Introduce your students and youth groups to our centennial curriculum; earn a one-day pass for each child. It was designed with state standards in mind for 4th graders, but can be adapted for any age.  Any classroom or group that sends us photos of  any of the curriculum activities in use receives a one-day pass for each child to take home and use with their family and friends.
  • Try out our Hoosier Quest program. Earn patches and pins for each state park by attending programs, taking hikes and volunteering.
  • Make a commitment to play outdoors with your children or grandchildren. The Children’s Outdoor Bill of Rights can help with ideas.
  • Learn about the valuable natural resources in our Indiana State Parks. From deer reductions to invasive plant removal in state parks to crop lease programs at reservoirs, there’s a lot going on.