This summer, as part of its new annual America’s National Parks Week event, National Geographic is taking viewers on an extraordinary venture across world-famous and lesser-known national parks to reveal the diversity and wonder of the United States.
The five-part documentary series from the award-winning producers of Planet Earth, America’s National Parks — narrated and executive produced by singer and songwriter Garth Brooks (No. 1-selling solo artist in U.S. history) — premieres Aug. 29 at 9/8c over five consecutive nights on National Geographic. All episodes will also be available to stream on Aug. 31, exclusively on Disney+.
Each night features remarks from the first lady of the United States, Dr. Jill Biden, as she kicks off the series with a special message about how each national park connects people to a piece of the American story. Additionally, in participation with the White House’s Joining Forces Initiative, National Geographic will premiere a PSA throughout the five-night event.
In the PSA, Dr. Biden shows appreciation for our military community and reminds current service members and their families, veterans, and Gold Star families of their free entry into all national parks across the country. Finally, on the closing night, Dr. Biden gives an uplifting message that highlights the wondrous parks and animals showcased throughout the series.
National Geographic’s SVP of Development and Production Janet Han Vissering said, “As a champion of our beloved national parks and longstanding advocate for our military community, we are thrilled Dr. Biden joined forces with National Geographic to encourage all Americans to explore the numerous beautiful national parks across the country.”
Dr. Biden said as part of her introduction to the series, “America’s national parks are full of unrivaled natural beauty, geological wonders, cultural history, and amazing wildlife. Each national park connects people to a piece of the American story — who we are and where we came from.”
Biden added: “With at least one national park in every state, all Americans can enjoy them. Some are close to home, [and] others require a little more planning and travel, but however far you choose to go, national parks connect us to the wonder and renewal of nature, helping us discover more about our country and ourselves.
“America’s national parks belong to all of us, so I encourage everyone to go out and enjoy them.”
America’s National Parks is an immersive, deep dive into the grandeur and beauty of the treasured landscapes that make up our collective national jewels. From the lush valley floors of Yosemite to the fiery, constantly erupting volcanoes of Hawai’i, these wild open spaces are home to amazing animal inhabitants, from some of the biggest bears on the planet to some of its toughest newts.
Each one thrives in the nuanced ecosystems of these cherished parks. Some are seen in intimate glimpses, and others are television firsts, such as the elusive Mexican long-nosed bats feeding at night on the agave plant in Big Bend National Park.
America’s National Parks kicks off National Geographic’s new annual event, America’s National Parks Week, which takes place from Monday, Aug. 29, through Friday, Sept. 2, 2022, from 6:00 p.m.-3:00 a.m. EDT each day.
As part of the week, the Disney+ Original Series America the Beautiful, narrated by Michael B. Jordan, will air at 10/9c each night. Additional network premieres include America’s National Parks: Hidden Gems, Bear Country Compilation, and Animals of the National Parks. There will also be encore presentations of previously released programs.
AMERICA’S NATIONAL PARKS EPISODES
Premieres Monday, Aug. 29, at 9/8c on National Geographic; Streams Aug. 31 only on Disney+
Grand Canyon National Park is a high-rise haven sculpted by the elements where all of life is connected. Following the cycle of seasons from winter to fall, explore the secret depths of the world’s most famous natural wonder.
At every elevation, from rim to riverbed, the park’s wild inhabitants carve out a niche that gives them an edge in this ancient arena.
Premieres Tuesday, Aug. 30, at 9/8c on National Geographic; Streams Aug. 31 on Disney+
Yosemite National Park rises from lush valley floors to soaring alpine peaks. With 4 million visitors a year, famed granite faces, giant sequoias, and over 400 different animal species, it’s a celebrity in the world of national parks.
Despite its fame, Yosemite still holds secrets that are rarely seen. This episode reveals how black bears, coyotes, owls, and a host of smaller critters survive in this Californian oasis.
Premieres Wednesday, Aug. 31, at 9/8c on National Geographic; Streams Aug. 31 on Disney+
Big Bend National Park is a vast wilderness of mountains, deserts, and rivers deep in the heart of Texas. A gift to the U.S. from the Lone Star State, Big Bend National Park is a protected sanctuary for life on the southern border.
With more species of birds, bugs, and cacti than any other national park in the United States, this park is a unique and harsh wonderland.
Premieres Thursday, Sept. 1, at 9/8c on National Geographic; Streams Aug. 31 on Disney+
Badlands National Park is a land of rugged beauty, 75 million years in the making. Found in South Dakota, its heart is a sea of grass, making up one of the most endangered ecosystems on the Earth. This park is also home to iconic rocky spires carved from the ground by wind and rain.
Among the grass and stone are some of America’s most iconic species, which have evolved together to benefit each other.
Premieres Friday, Sept. 2, at 9/8c on National Geographic; Streams Aug. 31 on Disney+
Witness the natural wonders of Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, a sacred land born of fire and sea. Home to the most unique assemblage of species anywhere on the planet that navigate living in the ever-changing landscape shaped by the world’s most active volcanoes.
From humpback whales to carnivorous caterpillars, this episode reveals the largest and most ecologically diverse wilderness in the Pacific Islands.
America’s National Parks is produced by Wildstar Films, the award-winning creative team behind iconic natural history films and series like Disney+’s recently premiered America the Beautiful, Disneynature’s Earth, and BBC’s Planet Earth.
To showcase the breathtaking landscape and extraordinary wildlife, the team employed cutting-edge technology, including long-lens cinematography, remote camera traps, macro photography, and the latest high-resolution drone technology.
Accompanying the series, National Geographic Books recently released 100 Great American Parks by Stephanie Pearson, an innovative guide that leads readers to discover the greatest park experiences the world has to offer, from the Rio Grande to Hawaii’s constantly erupting volcanoes.
Featuring a foreword from Garth Brooks and jam-packed with need-to-know travel information — including the best scenic overlooks and hiking trails, practical wildlife-spotting tips, and more — this inspirational collection takes readers inside all 63 national parks, as well as 37 state, recreational, and city parks and green spaces. It showcases the immense beauty, diversity, surprises, and wonder of each.
Mirko Parlevliet has been reporting on the entertainment industry since 1998 and founded Vital Thrills in 2018 to cover the latest streaming, movie, TV, and video game news. Mirko previously created the websites ComingSoon, Spider-Man Hype!, SuperHeroHype, and ShockTillYouDrop.