The 2015 National Park Quarters will be released during the sixth year of the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program from the United States Mint. These 2015 strikes of the program include (in their correct release order):
*Nebraska – 2015 Homestead National Monument of America Park Quarter
*Louisiana – 2015 Kisatchie National Forest Park Quarter
*North Carolina – 2015 Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter
*Delaware – 2015 Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge Quarter
*New York – 2015 Saratoga National Historical Park Quarter
In a series of 56 coins total from the Mint, these are just the five showcased during the year 2015. The complete program started in 2010 and will end in 2021. The United States Mint chose one national site from each state, the District of Columbia and the US Territories to represent each year, through the America the Beautiful Quarters Program. These national sites will be displayed on the reverse side of each quarter.
However, the design for the reverses of the 2015 National Park Quarters will likely not be known until late in 2014. On the flip side of the quarter, the original portrait of George Washington, the first president of the United States, will be featured. This portrait, which has been on the quarter since 1932, was done by John Flanagan.
More information on the sites to be honored by the 2015 National Park Quarters to be released by the US Mint is offered below :
Homestead National Monument of America Quarter – The Homestead National Monument of America Quarter honors the site in Nebraska which itself honors the Homestead Act of 1862 which helped expand the United States westward. Under the Act, people were allowed to receive free land in the West if they filed the appropriate paperwork and made improvements to the land.
Homestead National Monument is located in Southeast Nebraska and strives to educate people about the Homestead Act and how it affected the areas that people moved to. Daniel Freeman, an individual who took part in the Homestead Act, has his property commemorated as the site for the National Monument. He was the very first man to file for a homestead, completing it just ten minutes after the act went into effect.
Homestead National Monument of America features a Heritage Center and a Tallgrass Prairie where visitors can gather information and see how the prairie would have looked to the early settlers.
Kisatchie National Forest Quarter – The Kisatchie National Forest Quarter honors the national forest which covers more than 600,000 acres across seven parishes in Louisiana This national forest was designated as such in 1930.
Visitors can ride on horseback and ATV’s through several designated trials, and camp anywhere they would like. Hunting, swimming, fishing and other recreational sports are also available, but only when designated to do so.
Kisatchie is also home to an abundance of wildlife. However, there are several species of poisonous snakes in the region as well, and visitors are warned to stay away from any sort of snake to be safe.
Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter – The Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter honors the site in North Carolina that is unique in that it leads to several other national sites when visitors enter from its north or south entrance. For instance, if a visitor enters from the south, they will be heading north to Shenandoah National Park.
There is an abundance of scenery and recreational opportunities through "America’s Favorite Drive". Over 450 miles long, this parkway travels through mountain meadows and vistas. Several historic structures, like old farmsteads, can also be seen along the way.
Blue Ridge Parkway was constructed during the 1930s as a work project during the Depression. It connects Shenandoah National Park in Virginia to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina.
Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge Quarter – The Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge Quarter honors the site in Delaware consisting of 15,978 acres, which is mostly tidal salt marsh. It also contains over 1000 acres of fresh water pools, and over 1000 acres of agricultural lands. Much of the refuge is flat and is just less than 10 feet above sea level.
Established in 1937, the refuge is a primary spot for migrating birds to stay and breed. This refuge is one of many that extend from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico.
Over the years, it has become more important to preserve this area and the wildlife that depend on it because the surrounding lands have been lost to urban development.
About 100,000 visitors a year come to Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge to see the birds and other wildlife that make this area home.
Saratoga National Historical Park Quarter – The Saratoga National Historical Park Quarter honors the site in New York of the first battle that American forces won over the British during the Revolutionary War. It is a monument to the battlefield and two other sites from the Battle of Saratoga.
At this historical park, visitors can also find the Schuyler House and the Saratoga Monument. The Schuyler house was the home of General Philip Schuyler, and is located about 7 miles from the battlefield. The Saratoga Monument was erected to commemorate the American victory at Saratoga.