Anticipation is growing for the Grand Canyon National Park Quarter release, which is the fourth coin in the America the Beautiful Quarters™ Program.
The new Grand Canyon quarter is likely to become one of the top souvenirs for the popular park, which draws 4.5-5 million visitors each year. With that kind of popularity, a sizable crowd is expected at the quarter’s launch ceremony on Tuesday, September 21, at 1:30 PM Mountain Time. The location for the event is on the park’s South Rim, between the Hopi House and Verkamp’s Visitor Center in the Grand Canyon Village.
"Planning" is an important factor when visiting the Grand Canyon. The Grand Canyon National Park requires an Entrance Fee for private vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists. Since the parking lot nearest the ceremony is small, park officials hope visitors arriving by car will use one of the ample parking lots at the Backcountry Information Center or the Grand Canyon Visitor Center near Mather Point. From either location visitors can then ride the park’s free shuttle bus to a stop near the Hopi House.
The Hopi House and Verkamp’s Visitor Center are located near the edge of the rim, just up the hill and stairway from the El Tovar free shuttle stop and the Grand Canyon Train Depot. The shuttles frequently run between stops from before sunrise to after sunset and do not require any ticket or toll. The map at http://www.nps.gov/grca/parknews/upload/SRGuideFall2010trainsitMap.pdf provides locations for parking lots, shuttle stops, visitors centers and the Post Office.
It is highly likely that the ceremony will be held outdoors, with the awe-inspiring canyon as the backdrop. United States Mint Director Ed Moy has hosted the previous three park quarter launches this year, and he is scheduled to participate in the Grand Canyon quarter ceremony.
The Director and a few other dignitaries will speak before the new quarter is officially unveiled. Immediately following the event, free quarters will be handed out to children 18 years old and younger, while $10 rolls of the Grand Canyon National Park quarters (likely struck at Mint in Denver) will be available for purchase at face value — expect to wait in line. The Post Office at the Grand Canyon is located at Market Plaza, and many collectors will go there to postmark their rolls.
The day before the ceremony, Monday, September 20, the Grand Canyon National Park Quarter will be released into circulation via the Federal Reserve Bank circuit. At noon Eastern Time, the Mint will start selling 100-coin bags and Two-Roll Sets for $35.95 and $32.95, respectively.
Later that evening, many die hard collectors will attend the Collectors Forum that will be hosted by the Mint. The public is encouraged to attend the forum, as it provides the opportunity to ask questions and discuss future coins with Director Moy. The exact time and location of the forum will soon be announced.