October 12th means Happy National Fossil Day!

Millions of years after animals roamed the earth, we are using their fossils to learn more about the time period in which they lived. Creatures that have been extinct and exist only in our imaginations can become real through fossil reseach.

The National Park Service and the American Geological Institute are partnering to host the second annual National Fossil Day on October 12, 2011. The day celebrates the scientific and educational value of fossils. And they play a huge role in our National Parks system every day.

Dinosaur National Monument in Colorado is perhaps one of the most famous examples of fossils being featured as an attraction at an NPS site. The Quarry Hall building houses 1,500 dinosaur bones and is chocked full of educational exhibits on the subject.

Even if you can't make it out to a park or monument for Fossil Day, be sure to check the schedule. Many parks are running events before and after the actual day to honor Earth Science Week. For more information and for events going on during National Fossil Day, be sure to visit the official NPS website.