The Morning Report

Thursday, August 07, 2014

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Black Canyon Of The Gunnison National Park (CO)
Rangers Find Missing Boys And Father

Park rangers worked quickly on the afternoon of Tuesday, August 5th, to search the area along and around the Warner Route for a father and two boys from New Mexico who were reported missing by family members.

The boys, ages 12 and 14, had gotten separated from their father during a short hike. He returned to the parking lot to tell his wife and daughter that the boys were missing and then went back into the canyon to look for them. When he did not promptly return, family members reported all three as missing and a hasty search was begun.

After several hours of searching along the upper parts of the route and canyon rim, and with darkness approaching, two rangers carrying overnight gear and extra food and water hiked to the bottom of the route.

The man and two boys were located around midnight at the Gunnison River. They were hungry and thirsty, but otherwise in good condition. They hiked out with rangers on Wednesday morning.

[Submitted by Sandra Snell-Dobert, Chief of Interpretation, Education, and Technology]


Home Of Franklin D Roosevelt National Historic Site (NY)
Annual Summer Institute Focuses On Farms And Food

Over a three-day period at the end of July, more than 140 elementary and high school teachers, together with educators from environmental groups, farms, and historic sites, gathered at the Home of FDR National Historic Site for Teaching the Hudson Valley's annual summer institute.

This year's theme was “Farms & Food: Teaching the Hudson Valley from the Ground Up.” 

Teaching the Hudson Valley (THV) is a program of the National Park Service, Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and the Hudson River Valley Institute at Marist College.

Participants chose from nearly 20 workshops on topics ranging from nutrition education to interpreting and preserving agricultural resources to meeting the need for food to climate change and farming. The keynote address, “Educating Our Next Generation to Eat with Consciousness,” was presented by Pam Koch, a professor of nutrition education and director of the Tisch Center for Food, Education and Policy at Teachers College, Columbia University.  The other keynote session, “Farming in the Valley Today,” featured a panel of four farmers. 

A middle day of field experiences allowed participants to select one of three extended programs – “Albany Food Arts,” a combination of cooking and drawing lessons; “Our Ecosystem, Our Health: Exploring the Benefits of School & Community Gardens,” featuring sites in Poughkeepsie, or “The Scoop on Dirt: Soil, Farming and History” at Martin Van Buren NHS. 

Martin Van Buren NHS was excited to host the field experience in Kinderhook, New York.  The day-long segment of the overall workshop provided an opportunity for educators to explore how the partnership between Roxbury Farms and the NPS has been successful at creating living cultural landscapes. 

Jean-Paul Courtens, owner and founder of Roxbury Farms, toured the group through the operation of the farm, highlighting the biodynamic practices which he employs to “heal the land,” and provided a comparison between Van Buren’s operation and his own. 

Further exploration of this theme was conducted by anthropologist, Cathy Stanton, PhD, who illustrated the relationship between a presidential site and a working farm in the context of political and ethnographic history in the Hudson Valley. 

A typical response came from Robin Taliaferro, a first grade teacher at Duzine Elementary School in New Paltz. She and her husband have operated an organic vegetable farm, also in New Paltz, for more than a decade, and Pete has been farming even longer:

"It was awesome!! If you're a teacher, want to be a teacher, love to learn, or have children you should consider next year's conference. It was fun, informative, current, and very interesting!"

[Submitted by Debi Duke and Justin Monetti]

Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve (WA)
Snakelum Canoe Restoration Completed

When Island County Historical Society Museum director Rick Castellano needed a place to restore a 160-year old, 27-foot-long Coast Salish family canoe, he contacted the operations manager of Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve, Craig Holmquist.  Holmquist offered the perfect place for the restoration – right next to his office in the Reuble Barn. 

In 2012, with funding in place from the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community and the Tulalip Tribal Community, and the location secured, conservators got to work, stabilizing the fragile and compromised canoe. 

Along the way, the canoe offered up many stories from the Lower Skagit people, the community members, past restoration efforts, as well as fascinating discoveries – like the small sections of pale blue coloring on the interior, a remnant from when it was first carved and decorated.

Built in the style of coastal tribes, the massive Snakelum canoe was carved from a red cedar tree between 600 and 800 years old, yet is surprisingly light, weighing approximately 400 pounds.

One of the first documented owners was Chief Snetlum of the Lower Skagit Tribe on Penn Cove, now within the boundaries of Ebey’s Landing NHR.  After Snetlum’s death in 1852, the canoe passed to his sons, Kwuss ka nam and Hel mits: both men signed the 1855 Treaty of Point Elliott, creating the Swinomish Reservation.  Eventually the canoe settled with Snetlum’s grandson, Charlie Snakelum, who was born about 1846.

Snakelum and his family used the canoe extensively in their travels on the Salish Sea as they gathered food stores and visited distant relatives.  Following Snakelum’s death in 1932, the canoe was displayed in downtown Coupeville near the Alexander Blockhouse.  Eventually it was perched atop a canoe shed in front of the museum.  By the time it was finally moved under a protective roof, the elements and souvenir seekers, had taken their toll. 

Now, after two years, the Snakelum Canoe restoration project is complete, and on July 30th the massive canoe was carefully moved from the Reuble Barn at Ebey’s Landing NHR into an enclosed truck and made the journey to the Swinomish Reservation. 

The canoe was met by a large contingent of Swinomish Tribal Community members, and as the canoe was lifted from the truck, men, women and children from the tribe reverently approached the canoe to assist in carrying it to its temporary resting place.  In celebration, members of Snakeulm’s family sang a song of welcome

 “It was our pleasure to share the Reuble Barn for the restoration work on the canoe,” said Holmquist. “For more than two years, I regularly showed the canoe to visitors.  They were all impressed and enthused with the endeavor.  Thanks to Island County Historical Society for sharing this important artifact with us!”

For Castellano, the canoe is a “living artifact” that tells the story of the First People who occupied this region for almost ten thousand years.  

“Special thanks are certainly in order for Craig Holmquist and NPS for their generosity and patience in allowing ICHS to use the Reuble Barn facility for the implementation of this historic undertaking,” said Castellano. “It was the perfect venue for a very unique project, and also allowed the canoe to gradually acclimate to its new home indoors.”

The Snakelum Canoe will be on display at the Swinomish Casino & Lodge, through September, when it will return to the museum as the centerpiece of the new Native American and Natural History exhibit. 

[Submitted by Carol L. Castellano, Office Administrator]

Glen Canyon National Recreation Area (AZ,UT)
Native Conservation Corps Cultivates Young Stewards

For the fourth consecutive year, the Native Conservation Corps program has played an integral role in connecting the next generation of Native Americans to their public lands.

During July, seven Native American youth (Navajo, Zuni, and San Carlos Apache) were exposed to a diverse set of career opportunities at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Rainbow Bridge National Monument, and the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.

Participants gained hands-on training and experience in habitat restoration, vegetation monitoring, and aquatic invasive species education and were introduced to careers in management, interpretation, geology, paleontology, and rangering. Participants developed outdoor living and recreation skills through camping and cooking in the great outdoors and by hiking and paddling the local gems.

This program continues to connect Native American communities to their federal lands, and develop diverse young stewards who are eager to preserve and protect park resources and their native heritage.

In 2015, project coordinators are planning to expand this program to include additional National Park Service and other federal land management units. This program advances the following NPS A Call to Action plan action items: Step by Step (# 2), Stop Talking and Listen (# 13), Home Grown (# 33) and Value Diversity (# 36).

If you are interested in hosting Native Conservation Corps in 2015, please contact Sarah Herve (Ph. 928-524-6228), Todd Hisaichi (Ph. 520-678-3358), or Lonnie Pilkington (Ph. 928-608-6269).

The Native Conservation Corps would like to thank the following program supporters: Glen Canyon Natural History Association, Grand Staircase Escalante Partners, The Walton Family Foundation, Petrified Forest National Park, Petrified Forest Museum Association, Grand Canyon National Park, Navajo Nation Parks and Recreation, Overland Canyon Tours, Lake Powell Paddleboards, Grand Canyon Wildlands Council, and numerous individual volunteers.

[Submitted by Lonnie Pilkington]

United States Park Police
Officers Join In National Night Out Events

In 1984, an effort to promote involvement in crime prevention activities was introduced to create police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie and to send a message to criminals to let them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.

The National Association of Town Watch (NATW), a non-profit organization dedicated to the development and promotion of various crime prevention programs, including neighborhood watch groups, law enforcement agencies, state and regional crime prevention associations and other groups devoted to safer communities, introduced National Night Out, “America’s Night Out Against Crime.”

Joining in the celebration of 31 years of National Night Out service, the United States Park Police Field Offices participated in the 2014 National Night Out program on Tuesday, August 5th.

U.S. Park Police officers from Washington, DC, participated in activities in River Terrace Park, Fort Circle Park, and various locations in Alexandria, Virginia. The San Francisco Field Office joined the San Francisco Police Department and Fire Department at the Ernest Ingold Boys and Girls Club to interact with the community and promote agency awareness.

[Submitted by Sergeant Lelani Woods, Public Information Officer]

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Lowell National Historical Park (MA)
Park Rangers Join In National Night Out Activities

On August 5th, protection rangers from Lowell National Historical Park participated in National Night Out at the St. Louis School in Lowell, Massachusetts.

National Night Out is an annual crime and safety event which celebrates partnerships within the community. National Night Out brings together residents, first responders, local organizations and businesses to share a fun evening at neighborhood sites.

Representatives from the Lowell Police Department, Massachusetts State Police, Middlesex County Sheriff’s Department, Pride Star Ambulance Services, Lowell Emergency Management and Lowell Fire Department were among the many agencies present.

Lowell NHP rangers showed off their cruiser along with their children’s outreach car, which is a mini replica of the division’s law enforcement sedan designed by one of the rangers. This was the public debut of the car and it was a success.

Children of all ages were able to sit in both the cruiser and the replica and ask questions about the National Park Service. Parents enjoyed the opportunity to take pictures of their children.

[Submitted by Traci Shorb, Park Ranger]


Katmai National Park & Preserve (AK)
GS-0025-12 Chief Ranger (Detail)

Katmai National Park and Preserve is seeking commissioned NPS employees interested in a detail assignment as chief ranger for Katmai National Park and Preserve, Alagnak Wild River, and Aniakchak National Monument and Preserve.

The detail will be for up to 120 days, beginning as soon as September 8th. The detailee will be responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of the Resource and Visitor Protection Division for all three park units, and will directly supervise and manage two district rangers, the park pilot and the park’s operational dispatch. The detail period will include a peak visitation period, as fishing and hunting seasons overlap in September and both districts go through closeout for the year. 

The Katmai area parks are comprised of over 4.5 million acres along the northern Aleutian Peninsula, positioned between Kodiak Island to the southeast and the famous Bristol Bay and Bering Sea to the west. Headquarters is located in the remote village of King Salmon, which is not connected to the road system; it is only accessible by air travel from Anchorage.

The detailee will serve as the ranger operations and aviation representative to the park’s leadership team. This position requires excellent oral and written communication skills, critical thinking skills, and the ability to produce well-organized, accurate work under short deadlines. It is also highly recommended that the detailee already possess MOCC and/or lake/river boating skills and have experience working with fixed-wing aircraft.

Katmai will pay for all travel and per diem expenses, as well as all salary costs above current base pay, which will be covered by the employee’s home unit.  Employees who would like to be considered for this detail should, after gaining approval from their supervisors, forward a short cover letter and resume to Superintendent Diane Chung , by close of business, August 22nd.

For more Information, contact Superintendent Diane Chung or Chief Ranger Neal Labrie at the above email address or by phone at 907-246-2120 and 907-246-2127 respectively.

Horace Albright Training Center
WG-3501-3 Student Trainee (Laborer)

Horace Albright Training Center at the Grand Canyon has issued an announcement for a student trainee (laborer).

Click on the link below for a copy of the announcement with full details on duties, area information, and procedures for applying.

For more information, call Jamie Barnes, Human Resources Franchise Office, at 303-985-6851.

It closes on August 19th.
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