Coin collectors and drinking game fans excited by release of America the Beautiful quarters.

Starting next month, the United States Mint will issue the first of 56 quarter-dollar coins featuring designs depicting national parks and other national sites as part of the United States Mint America the Beautiful Quarters™ Program.

The first coin to be released celebrates Hot Springs National Park, which was set aside by Congress in 1832, 40 years before Yellowstone National Park. Four other coins will be placed into circulation this year—Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming, Yosemite National Park in California, Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona and Mt. Hood National Forest in Oregon.

From now until 2021, each year the U.S. Mint will issue five new designs that depict national points of interest on the reverse (tails side) of America the Beautiful Quarter to honor noteworthy sites across the country. The program takes a page out of the widely lauded state quarter program that wrapped up last year. Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner selected the list of sites to be honored after consulting with Secretary of the Interior Kenneth Salazar and the governor or chief executive of each state or territory in accordance with authorizing legislation and the site selection process.

Collectors are excited to have another 56 issues to treasure (check out the America the Beautiful Quarters National Site Register to find out which national site in your state or U.S. territory was selected) and might want to consider investing in ATB collection kits to protect their collection.  Quarters aficionados will be disappointed to learn that the new issues won’t give them any new bounce benefits.

The United States Mint will also mint and issue unique silver bullion quarter-dollar coins that are exact duplicates of each of the America the Beautiful Quarters.  The bullion coins will be made of .999 fine silver, have a diameter of three inches and weigh five ounces.  The fineness and weight will be edge-incused on the bullion coins.  The United States Mint will issue these coins under the America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coin™ Program.  Each silver bullion coin will be available for sale during the year in which its corresponding circulating quarter-dollar coin is issued.