BEATRICE – A national park west of Beatrice has set its schedule of entertainment for this year’s Homestead Days celebration, and it includes an actor known for film and television work.

Actor Sean Astin is scheduled to appear at 3 p.m., Saturday, June 22nd during the celebration, at the Homestead National Historical Park. He starred in the sports classic, “Rudy”… and was in the "Lord of the Rings" Trilogy.

Homestead Park Ranger Amber Kirkendall says park officials got the ball rolling on an invitation after hearing Astin speak at the largest genealogy conference in the United States…..called Roots Tech.

"He was their keynote speaker and he articulated the importance of family roots and the legacy of that...but also it was fascinating to hear about his he kind of tied the American value system and American culture to different roles."

Kirkendall says Astin has a midwestern homesteading history in his famous family….the son of Actress Patty Duke and Actor John Astin. "His father, John Astin....his grandfather homesteaded in Kansas. I've been in the process of reading a book by Sean Astin about his life and his experiences and his career...and he talked a lot about how his father really valued education and that thing was really embedded in him. That's really a common thing that we see in homesteading families. It's represented in our Freeman School and our exhibits, here. We have pulled Joseph Astin's case file from Kansas and we will present that to him (Sean Astin) when he's we're really excited."

Saturday events during Homestead Days at the national park include the Oklahoma Fancy Dancers Native American dance group….along with four indigenous artists working on creations….. the Homestead Harmonizers and the Offutt Air Force Base Heartland of America Brass Quintet.

Sunday’s schedule includes the Cortland Opry House Dulcimer Players, the Kansas City Irish Dance Company and Heartland Highland Dancers, traditional South American Music and Michael Murphy performing on the native flute.

Performers will be on the stage in the bowl outside the park’s education center. A shuttle service will be available, with food vendors and demonstrations on the prairie.