Summer is on its way. With the COVID-19 pandemic almost in the rearview mirror, now is the time to start planning a trip to one of America’s parks. There are too many national and state parks with stoneware mugs in their gift shops to list them all here. However, we’ve put together a list of a few of our favorites, based on the regions where you’ll find them and the attractions they offer.
Parks in the Northeast with Sunset Hill Stoneware Mugs
With plenty of American history and natural beauty, parks in the Northeast showcase the best of both worlds. Here are just a few to consider on your next road trip through the region.
The National Mall (Washington, D.C.)
A must for anyone visiting Washington D.C., the National Mall features memorials for multiple figures, wars and turning points for our country’s history. Many of the classic stops for a tour of Washington, D.C. are on the grounds, including the Washington Monument, the Jefferson Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, the FDR Memorial and too many others to list. That doesn’t even include the museums along the National Mall or any of the other places of cultural importance, all of which deserve blog posts of their own.
For those in the hunt for USA-made coffee mugs in Washington, D.C., we supply our stoneware to all of the memorials and monuments we listed above. Each mug is unique to the monument where you’ll find it, with designs that capture each one in stunning detail.
Fort Necessity National Battlefield (Farmington, Penn.)
An early example of global conflict played out in part in this battlefield in the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania. On this now-peaceful meadow in 1754, an up-and-coming British commander named George Washington led his men to defend a hastily made fort from French regiments occupying land closer to what is now Pittsburgh. It was the only time Washington surrendered in his military career.
To make a long story short, this major battle was the first in the Seven Years’ War, wherein the British and the French fought to see who would control the most valuable land in the world. Specifically, Ohio. The conflict escalated and involved even more European and Native American governments while also setting the stage for the Revolutionary War and other wars to come.
Today, visitors can see this historic spot for themselves, complete with a recreation of the tiny fort in question. They can also see recreations of the battle and walk the trails for themselves. Like in many other national parks and historic sites, guests have a chance at finding Sunset Hill Stoneware mugs and steins in the visitor center’s bookstore, with facts about the park stamped onto the bottom of each piece.
White Mountain National Forest (Conway, N.H.)
Located so far north that you can almost smell maple syrup, White Mountain National Forest is a huge forest preserve protected by the National Parks system. In its hundreds of thousands of acres, adventure-seekers will find mile after mile of trails steeped in untouched natural beauty. History buffs will also find restored 18th-century homes, Native American archaeological sites and historic farmhouses scattered throughout these public lands.
Willing to wait a few months longer? Not only will you potentially find a stoneware coffee mug unique to this national forest; you’ll also find autumn leaves whose colors are too vivid for words. Hit the Kancamagus Scenic Byway early in the morning during a clear fall day for a sight you’ll never forget.
Parks in the South with Stoneware Mugs
We’ve already highlighted just a few of the state parks in Georgia where you can find our mugs. If you’re looking to explore outside of the Peach State though, we’ve got you covered for a few other places.
Elk Knob State Park (Todd, N.C.)
Tucked away in the mountains of North Carolina, Elk Knob State Park offers hiking trails and scenic beauty that rival any you’ll find elsewhere in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The trails and hilltop vistas of the mountains offer inspiring views of Appalachia. These panoramas become even more breathtaking in the late fall, when the beech forests turn orange and yellow.
Traveler’s tip: Before you stop at the visitor’s center to get your stoneware coffee mug, go to the top of Elk Knob and look for rainclouds rolling past the hills, the raindrops falling on the valleys below, rainbows shining through the storm. The memory will stay with you forever.
Copper Breaks State Park (Quanah, Tx.)
Want to feel like a cowboy for a day? Look no further than this park tucked away from the lights of any major cities in northern Texas. Copper Breaks State Park boasts all the camping and hiking trails one would expect of a state park, but with some twists that will transport you straight to the heart of Texas. Red rock canyons provide spectacular views of the area, and members of the Official State of Texas Longhorn Herd call this park home.
Those planning to camp will have a surprise in store once the sun goes down. One of Copper Breaks’ greatest claims to fame is its stargazing. Take the stoneware coffee mug you got for yourself at the park’s visitor’s center and enjoy some hot chocolate while the beauty of the Milky Way stretches out before your eyes.
Bear Creek Lake State Park (Cumberland, Va.)
A getaway from nearby Richmond, Bear Creek Lake State Park cusps on the edge of the lake for which it’s named on the doorstep of the Appalachians. Outdoor recreation is the name of the game at this state park: Hiking trails abound, along with swimming, fishing, boating and a shooting range to practice archery.
Once you’ve collected your prize of a new Sunset Hill Stoneware mug that’s microwave and dishwasher safe while capturing your memories of a fun camping trip, you can use Bear Creek Lake as a base for exploring further afield. Monticello, multiple Civil War historic sites and even more state parks are all within easy driving distance of its central location.
Parks in the Midwest with Stoneware Coffee Mugs
We couldn’t go without mentioning a few of our favorite parks that are right in our backyard. Here are a few hidden gems in the Midwest to consider for your next weekend trip.
Lapham Peak State Park (Delafield, Wis.)
Between Madison and Milwaukee, Lapham Peak State Park is a part of the larger Kettle Moraine State Forest. Unlike other areas of the Midwest, retreating glaciers during the last Ice Age left thousands of tiny rolling hills throughout the park. These days, they make for excellent hiking trails with remarkable views of the woods beyond.
Summertime also offers the opportunity to take in some cultural treats at the Lapham Peak Unit. With a Summer Stage, visitors can catch performing arts or even rent the stage for themselves during the summer. Once you’ve gotten a taste of Wisconsin’s forests, visit Hausmann Nature Center to find your new stoneware coffee mug.
Indiana Dunes National Park (Chesterton, Ind.)
Most people probably wouldn’t think of beaches when Indiana comes to mind. However, this national park on the southern shores of Lake Michigan is a mainstay for Midwesterners looking to hit the beach without having to get on a plane.
Aside from the usual mainstays of national parks such as camping and hiking trails, Indiana Dunes’ namesake is the miles of lakeshore beaches. Visitors can swim in Lake Michigan, sunbathe and otherwise enjoy some summer fun, Midwest style, and take a mug home with them after they’ve had their time in the sun.
Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park (Mandan, N.D.)
Get ready to see a portrait of the great frontier. This spot along the Missouri River was where the infamous army officer George Custer commanded his outpost, along with serving as a settlement for the Mandan tribe throughout its earlier history. Today, amid the recreated fort and numerous hiking trails, visitors to Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park will also find replica earth lodges like what these Native people called home.
This fort was far from where Custer had his infamous Last Stand, but it was one of his haunts during his time on the American frontier. Today, you can find a stoneware mug with the fort’s likeness set in stone to bring home from camping at this remarkable spot.
Parks in the Western U.S. with Sunset Hill Stoneware
Getting USA-made coffee mugs is a must for any visit to these state and national parks. Luckily, there are multiple locations where you can find Sunset Hill mugs while getting out and enjoying the rugged beauty of the West.
Valley of Fire State Park (Overton, Nev.)
This Nevada gem has all the natural beauty and accessibility of a national park in a state park package. It’s also a short, easy drive up I-15 from Las Vegas. With sandstone formations that’ll make a geologist swoon, Valley of Fire State Park is an ideal hiking spot. Bring your camera to capture photos of the painted canyons and gorges, but know that no photo will capture the unspeakable beauty of this place like seeing it in person.
We’ve made a lot of different stoneware gifts for Valley of Fire’s visitor center in the past, including shot glasses in Autumn Fire featuring one of the park’s resident bighorn sheep. Today, you’ll still find full-size coffee mugs in a variety of earthy glaze colors to encapsulate your visit for years to come.
Harriman State Park (Island Park, Id.)
Looking to go off the beaten path from your planned trip to Yellowstone National Park? Look no further. According to the Idaho Department of Parks & Recreation, Harriman State Park hosts some of the best fly-fishing spots in the country and has 22 miles of trails. Visitors to the park have a chance to see moose, elk and trumpeter swans all year long.
On top of a list of Idaho state parks supplying Sunset Hill Stoneware mugs in their gift shops, Harriman State Park offers stoneware coffee mugs that capture the beauty of nature and one of the park’s resident moose in their medallions. This is just one of several Idaho state parks where you’ll find Sunset Hill Stoneware mugs.
Slide Rock State Park (Sonoma, Ariz.)
A short drive from Flagstaff, Slide Rock State Park is full of the wonders that make this part of Arizona one of the most beautiful places in the world. The star player is Oak Creek Canyon, carved with a slippery creek bottom from which the park gets its name, along with a host of trails and opportunities to see wildlife. This park was once a homestead with an apple orchard that still thrives long after it became public land.
Every year, the park hosts the Slide Rock Apple Festival, where visitors can pick their own fruit and enjoy the harvest for themselves in the late summer and early fall. The memory will make enjoying hot apple cider in the mug you get at Slide Park Market all the sweeter for years to come.
If we listed every single state park in America where you can find Sunset Hill Stoneware mugs as souvenirs, this blog would be the length of a novel. In addition to planning a trip to the parks we listed here, we recommend checking out our Mug Map for a list of even more spots where you might find your next state or national park coffee mug.