Last week on Thursday, June 14, quarters honoring Voyageurs National Park in Minnesota were formerly introduced to the public.
More than 600 people attended the launch ceremony hosted by officials from the United States Mint and National Park Service. Around 100 children received a free Voyageurs quarter to commemorate the event.
As seen in the above photo, the coin’s reverse (tails side) depicts a common loon with a rock cliff in the background.
"Just as the loon’s yodels and wails are a distinctive and timeless sound of Northern Minnesota’s wilderness and waterways, the Voyageurs quarter will echo the histories and cultures of the people who have been connected here through trade, industry, and recreation," U.S. Mint Director David J. Ryder said.
Mr. Ryder, the new Mint Director, was welcomed by the community and many regular coin enthusiasts young and old. After the ceremony he was greeted by many fans that wanted to meet him and get his autograph.
Retired ornithology professor Leland Grim led a festive ceremony that featured musical performances by International Falls natives Gavia Yount and Darcy Sullivan.
Boy Scouts of America Troop 150; Cub Scout Troop 145; Girl Scouts of America Troops 1150, 1151, 1153, and 1156; and Veterans of Foreign Wars Color Guard 2948 also participated in the ceremony.
Guest speakers included Ida Rukavina, Regional Outreach Director for U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar; Peter Makowski, Regional Outreach Director for U.S. Senator Tina Smith; Tom Whiteside, who represented U.S. Congressman Rick Nolan; and Park Superintendent Bob DeGross.
In addition, many attendees took part in the traditional coin exchange with quarters provided by TruStar Federal Credit Union. About $17,000 in P-mint mark quarters were swapped for cash.
Another highlight for 44 collectors and local enthusiasts was a coin forum held on the evening before the launch ceremony where attendees listened to and asked questions of U.S. Mint officials.
Voyageurs National Park quarters started entering circulation on Monday, June 11. On the same day, the U.S. Mint released them in rolls and bags. Available products include quarters struck at the Philadelphia, Denver and San Francisco Mints at prices ranging from $18.95 to $46.95.
The U.S. Mint’s America the Beautiful Quarters® Program debuted in 2010 and will honor 56 national parks and other sites through 2021. The Voyageurs quarter is the 43rd released since 2010 and the third of the five unique 25-cent designs for 2018.