Friday, August 17, 2012

Day 11: Great Smoky Mountain National Park

We didn't do much of anything related to history on the next day, just drove up from Atlanta to visit family in the Knoxville area, then continued east up into Great Smoky Mountain National Park. I'd never visited before, and fell in love.
Our campsite at the Elkmont Campground.

Running right through the campground, a popular spot with tubers and families.
Good morning to the Smokies!
We stopped at the Sugarlands Visitor Center on our way out of the campground the following morning, and they had a small but quite nice natural history museum space focused on the animals of the park.
A little old-fashioned but still holding up well and still very informative.
Sugarlands also had a space outside that intrigued me. Perhaps 20 feet from the center itself, on the way from the parking lot to the building, was this "First Amendment Space."
Small but not tiny; you could easily fit 10-15 people.

The sign, in case you can't read it, says:

"First Amendment" Expression Area

This area has been set aside for individuals or groups exercising their constitutional First Amendment rights. The National Parks Service neither encourages nor discourages, or otherwise endorses, these activities.
I applaud their spirit, if not their unfortunate use of quotation marks.

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