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Excitement and thrills on four wheels! Normally this would refer to the action on the track at the Homestead-Miami Speedway, but this year it’s all about the special route of Homestead’s National Parks Trolley running from the Speedway’s RV Lot to Everglades and Biscayne National Parks.
Thanks to a partnership between the City of Homestead, Homestead-Miami Speedway, National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), and Everglades and Biscayne National Parks, NASCAR fans will be able to enjoy free guided tours of the parks. On Thursday, November 15th, routes run from the RV Lot to Everglades National Park at 8:45AM, 10:05AM, 10:27AM, 12:00PM, 1:10PM, 1:41PM, 2:20PM, 3:30PM, and 3:40PM and to Biscayne National Park at 8:45AM, 9:19AM, 9:53AM, 12:52PM, 2:56PM, and 4:40PM.
At Everglades National Park, encounter wildlife like alligators, turtles, butterflies, and dozens of beautiful birds in the globally renowned mix of habitats that make up this unique ecosystem. Enjoy special ranger-led programs including wildlife spotting during the Anhinga Amble at 10:30AM or relaxed educational talks during the 1:30PM Glades Glimpse.
At Biscayne National Park, explore crystal clear waters and experience nature up close in this mostly aquatic park. Get ready to get wet during free Paddling Mini-Lessons at 10:00AM and 2:00PM where Park Rangers will show you how to kayak, canoe, or paddleboard followed by a short ranger-led program. The Island Boat Tour also departs at 10:00AM and 1:30PM, giving visitors the chance to explore Biscayne Bay and the iconic Boca Chita Key. Island Boat Tours cost $39(plus tax) for adults and $29(plus tax) for kids aged 5-12. Reservations are required: (786) 335-3644.
In addition to the special routes, the entire weekend will feature displays at the Speedway from both Everglades and Biscayne National Parks, NPCA, and Florida National Parks Association. Park Rangers will be present to educate fans about the wildlife and habitats found in the parks. Interactive displays will include touch tables and giveaways. Also, look for appearances by the NPCA mascot, Teddy!
“Thousands of families from around the U.S. come to the race every year,” said Vice Mayor Stephen Shelley. “Bringing the National Parks Trolley to the Ford Championship Weekend is the perfect opportunity for the City of Homestead and the National Parks to expand our partnerships. We’re able to reach out to a whole new audience that might not have been able to explore what Homestead and the Parks have to offer.”
The innovative and wildly popular Homestead National Parks Trolley program promoting eco-tourism and Homestead’s Historic Downtown will return every weekend from December 29, 2018 through April 21, 2019. For more information, please visit www.cityofhomestead.com/gateway