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America's Best Classroom Comes to the Outer Banks Group

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The Lumbe Tribe Boys and Girls Club attends a sea turtle program

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Date: August 17, 2006
Contact: Outer Banks Group, (252) 473-2111

The Outer Banks Group of the National Park Service is proud to announce the selection of Wright Brothers National Memorial as one of fourteen National Park Service sites to participate in the America’s Best Classroom program. Developed through a partnership between Unilever, The National Park Foundation, and The Boys and Girls Clubs of America, America’s Best Classroom will allow almost 3000 children to experience their National Parks, many for the first time.

Wright Brothers National Memorial was chosen by the Lumbee Tribe Boys and Girls Club of Pembroke, NC as the National Park Service site they would most want to visit. Fifty children, ranging in age from 8 to 12 years old, and twenty-four adults from the Club toured the Memorial on August 8, 2006. They explored the site, climbed up Big Kill Devil Hill to the Monument, and listened to a park ranger’s program on the Wrights’ achievement of the first flight.

While in the area, the group also visited Cape Hatteras National Seashore where they climbed the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse and listened to a ranger program on the history of the region’s lighthouses as well as one on sea turtles. Afterwards, the group went to a nearby beach where they were able to see two sea turtle nest sites and learn about how the National Park Service protects the incubating eggs. For many of the children, it was their first visit to a beach. Since a component of the America’s Best Classroom program is that the children must participate in a "service-to-land" project, the group cleaned litter from the beach near Ramp 43, north of Cape Point before heading home.

Since its inception, America’s Best Classroom has provided nearly 20,000 children with a once in a lifetime opportunity to learn from a park ranger while exploring new environments to gain a better understanding of the world in which they live. "It was our pleasure to host these children as part of the America’s Best Classroom program and to provide them with an experience they may otherwise never have," stated Superintendent Mike Murray.

Did You Know?

Giant Water Flea

This is not a space alien, even though it has a transparent body, wings, and a very large eye. Giant water fleas grow up to 2 cm long, and are a food source for small fish that shelter in the sound. You can swim with them in the sound-side waters off Cape Hatteras National Seashore.