People: Volunteers/Volunteer Efforts
Several groups augment the recreation area's maintenance and interpretive programs by presenting historic sites to the public. Montague Association for Restoration of Community History (M.A.R.C.H.) operates two historic properties in Montague, NJ, and has been particularly successful in establishing exhibits from donations made by past residents of the area. M.A.R.C.H. offers tours, lectures, and special holiday events. Just occupying the once-vacant structures is, in itself, a priceless form of upkeep.
Millbrook Village Society has spearheaded the raising of two barns and a 19th century gristmill, filling voids left in the village from arson and a failed dam project. The society supplies demonstrators and craftsmen to interpret lifeways to thousands of visitors during Millbrook Days, held each year. Volunteers operate a wagon shop, blacksmith shop, and woodworking shop open to the public.
Walpack Historical Society formed in 1986 to preserve the heritage of the Walpack Center Historic District on the New Jersey side of the park. The Society supplies docents to interpret the nearby Van Campen Inn, holds an annual Van Campen Day, reports any area vandalism to the park.
The Friends of Marie Zimmermann have helped the park in other ways. While park staff coordinates construction planning to restore the Marie Zimmermann House, Friends volunteers help maintain the grounds and promote local interest. Members were instrumental in requesting rehabilitation funds from Congress in the first place - something the park cannot do of its own.
Educating the public about park resources and giving historic properties that "cared for look," the park has witnessed a reduction in vandalism since the turbulent 1970s. Volunteers have helped show the way to a more promising future for the preservation of our park resources.
Throughout the Park
A large effort from outside the park provides thousands of hours of care. On and Under the Delaware, a yearly river clean-up sponsored by Kittatinny Canoes, helps restore and preserve the recreational value of the river by removing tons of litter and debris every year. Photos and accounts of the participants would indicate that they enjoy the effort as well.
Did You Know?
... that hemlock groves in Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area are threatened by a non-native insect, the hemlock woolly adelgid. Hemlocks provide shade for spectacular rhodondenron, for trout streams, and for native wildflowers. As hemlocks weaken and die, they are cut down for your safety. More...