2009 Ranger-led Battle Walks at Gettysburg

GETT Ranger program 2008

A Gettysburg National Military Park Ranger leads a walk to Cemetery Ridge as part of the park’s summer programs. Photo courtesy of Gettysburg National Military Park.

Guided Walks with Rangers this summer on the Gettysburg Battlefield

GETTYSBURG, Pa. – Park Rangers from Gettysburg National Military Park are inviting the public to explore the Gettysburg battlefield this summer with guided walks and programs, beginning on June 13. Gettysburg Rangers offer an array of guided walks and programs on the battlefield and in the Soldiers’ National Cemetery. The programs are all free, and include children’s programs about the battle and the Civil War.

This summer, the park is offering two indoor programs in the classroom at the Museum and Visitor Center. “The Battle of Gettysburg – An Overview” is a 30 minute program about the Gettysburg Campaign and all three days of battle and is offered at 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. daily in the Ford Motor Company Fund Education Center. “Monuments of Gettysburg” will also be offered in the classroom on Saturdays and Sundays at 1:30 p.m.

Seven days a week, throughout the summer, Rangers will lead popular Gettysburg walks and programs such as “First Day,” “Second Day,” and “The Third Day – Pickett’s Charge,” along with “Little Round Top,” “Devil’s Den,” walks in the Soldiers’ National Cemetery, and more. The Civil War experience is the focus of “Visits to the Past” programs with costumed interpreters who portray the men and women who witnessed and participated in the events of 1863 in Gettysburg.

Children’s programs once again feature “Join the Army” where children (ages 6-12 only) “enlist” in the army and learn something about what it meant to be a soldier in a Civil War regiment; the Junior Ranger program, a free family-oriented activity that allows children (ages 5-13) to become Junior Rangers by completing an activity guide as they visit the park and museum; and “Hands-on History Carts” available with Rangers in the afternoons in the museum lobbies featuring Civil War dress-up games, parlor games, and other fun.

Gettysburg Battle Anniversary Programs, July 1, 2, and 3

To commemorate the 146th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg on July 1, 2, and 3, Rangers will present special anniversary battle walks to explore key events during the three day battle. These popular programs are three hours in length. This year, some anniversary battle walks cover ground on the battlefield that has only recently been returned to its 1863 appearance as a result of the park’s battlefield rehabilitation efforts.

On July 1 – 3, Rangers are also offering an extensive list of “Real-Time” programs, a series of special short programs that commemorate the 146th Anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg. Over three days, 20 programs follow and explain the battle in chronological order and as close as possible to the real time the events described took place. The programs range in length from 30 minutes to an hour. “Real-Time” programs involve minimal walking, although visitors will need to make short drives by vehicle between program locations.

The David Wills House

In early 2009, the National Park Service opened the David Wills House right on the square in downtown Gettysburg to tell the story of the aftermath of battle and Lincoln’s visit to give the Gettysburg Address. Exhibits offer a look at the fighting through the streets of Gettysburg during the battle and the battle’s aftermath. The David Wills House is operated by Main Street Gettysburg, in partnership with Gettysburg National Military Park.

Gettysburg National Military Park is a unit of the National Park Service that preserves and protects the resources associated with the Battle of Gettysburg and the Soldiers’ National Cemetery, and provides an understanding of the events that occurred there within the context of American History.

The park’s new Museum and Visitor Center is located at 1195 Baltimore Pike, Gettysburg. For more information and a list of these programs go to http://www.nps.gov/gett/planyourvisit/gettdivsprograms.htm or call 717 / 334-1124.

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