The Morning Report

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Recent Editions  


Buffalo National Scenic River (AR)
Two Wilderness SAR Missions Conducted Within 24 Hours

On the afternoon of Friday, April 18th, dispatch received a cell phone call from a man who reported that his 48-year-old wife had stumbled on a large cobble while hiking about three miles down the Centerpoint Trail in the Ponca Wilderness, possibly fracturing her right ankle.  He also said that she was unable to bear any weight on her ankle and that she was asking to be rescued. 

Rangers and resource management staff, joined by personnel from a variety of cooperating agencies, including the park’s search and rescue team, BUFFSAR, responded for the six-and-a-half mile round-trip carryout rescue. 

Rescuers carried a wheeled litter in to her location, stabilized her injury, packaged her into the litter, and carried her to the trailhead, where she was transferred to a waiting ambulance.  A total of 39 people were involved in this rescue, all of whom demonstrated exemplary teamwork and communication. Ranger Melissa Moses served as incident commander.

Less than 24 hours later, BUFFSAR personnel responded to a second rescue callout, this time for a 28-year-old man who had fallen about 50 feet while free climbing, or soloing, on a cliff in the vicinity of Hawksbill Crag in the Ozark National Forest portion of the Upper Buffalo Wilderness.  He’d become painfully wedged in a tight crack between two large boulders on the ground, suffering significant injuries, and remained in that position for about two hours before first responders arrived at his location. 

Over 60 people were involved in the operation. They stabilized him, extricated him from the crack (which required some tricky patient handling), packaged him for a technical rescue, and conducted a vertical litter raising operation to the top of the 70-foot-high cliff.  They then conducted a carryout for about a half mile to a waiting Air Evac helicopter, which airlifted him to Washington Regional Medical Center in Fayetteville, AR, where he is recovering from his injuries.  Upper Buffalo District Ranger Mark Miller and Newton County SAR Coordinator Glenn Wheeler served as dual incident commanders under unified command.

[Submitted by Kevin Moses, Search and Rescue Coordinator]


Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine (MD)
Fort McHenry Guard Appears In Tourney Finals

The Fort McHenry Guard, a volunteer historical unit sponsored by the National Park Service and The Patriots of Fort McHenry, traveled to Dallas, Texas, and Nashville, Tennessee, to present the colors at the NCAA Men’s Final Four on April 5th and Women’s Final on April 8th.

“In just under three minutes, 80,000 people in the Dallas stadium and 12 million people on TV learned that Fort McHenry was the birthplace of the national anthem, written by Francis Scott Key, and that this was the bicentennial year of ‘The Star-Spangled Banner,” said Ranger Jim Bailey, who led the Guard to both Dallas and Nashville.

The NCAA invited the Guard to present the colors for both games back in February. The NCAA and the Friends of Fort McHenry provided the necessary funds to make the trip possible.

In addition to the games, Fort McHenry received significant airtime on local media in advance of the trip and a press release from the NCAA was picked up nationally in both print and online media.

Fifteen-year old brothers Daniel and Charles Kreger went to Dallas for their first event ever as new Volunteer-In-Parks with the Fort McHenry Guard.

“It was really cool to be a part of such a special moment,” said Charles, “I’m looking forward to being part of the Guard for the summer and maybe next year becoming a park ranger.”

 “Thanks for an over-the-top introduction to the Guard this weekend,” said their father, Mike Kreger. “This was a great way to introduce a younger generation to the fort and its history.”

Tim Ertel, music coordinator, led the fifes and drums of Fort McHenry onto both courts.

“It’s about reaching new audiences” he said. “What better way to reach out with the history of the national anthem then when it’s played in a major sporting venue?”

In addition to the two NCAA games, the Fort McHenry Guard also presented the colors for the opening day and opening night games of the Baltimore Orioles that same week, amounting to over 162,000 direct offsite visitors.

See the following for more information:

[Submitted by Vince Vaise ]

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Springfield Armory National Historic Site (MA)
Steampunk Weaponry Exhibit Opens In Park

Springfield Armory National Historic Site, the nation’s first armory, has joined forces with steampunk expert Bruce Rosenbaum and a cadre of steampunk artists to create an exhibit of re-imagined weapons called Steampunk Springfield Armory: Reimagining Our Nation’s Weaponry.  

The exhibit brings together the authenticity of the nation’s largest collection of military shoulder weapons with the imagination and ingenuity of some of today’s most inventive, contemporary steampunk artists. The exhibit will be open through September.

For those unfamiliar with the term, the steampunk movement was born in the literary works of science fiction writers such as Jules Verne, H. G. Wells, and Hugo Gernsback. Steampunk design is about the repurposing and the marrying of form and function, the combination of history and art and technology. At its essence, it infuses and synthesizes opposites to create the best of both worlds – future and past, old world craftsmanship and sleek modern design, humanism and technology, and art and science.

In this exhibit, contemporary steampunk artists used the historic firearm collection at Springfield Armory NHS for inspiration in creating their pieces, considering things like, “If we were in the Victorian era now, what would retro-future weapons look like? What would these inventions be made of?”

The pairing of artists’ modern pieces with objects from the historic collection within the exhibit itself allowed park staff and visitors to see the collection from a different perspective.

The exhibit is the first in the park’s new special exhibits gallery, which will present a new display every six months, along with an opening reception. Attendance at the public reception for “Steampunk Springfield Armory” exceeded the park’s expectations.

“The event was a great success,” said Jennifer Zazo, park ranger and exhibit co-curator. “It was great to see so many new faces and new interest in Springfield Armory National Historic Site.”

There are strong parallels between the artisans who worked at Springfield Armory in the past and the modern artists of today. Through these connections, Steampunk Springfield Armory challenges visitors to think about creativity, craftsmanship, and the Springfield Armory in new ways.

Indeed, in the first few weeks of the exhibition, park staff noticed a new demographic of visitors coming specifically to see the steampunk exhibit. This included steampunk enthusiasts throughout the New England area, an increase in youth visitation, and several groups of art students who used the exhibit as inspiration for drawings on location.

To read more, view this MASS Live article: Letters to the Editor: See Springfield Armory's exhibit, Steampunk

[Submitted by Lorin N. Diaz]

Office of Communications
Webchat Video And Transcript Now Available

On April 16th, Director Jarvis hosted his sixth Servicewide NPS employee webchat to answer your questions about the Service’s centennial in 2016. The video and transcript of the webchat are now available on the InsideNPS homepage.

Starting on May 1st and continuing through the end of the year, you are invited to express your passion for the NPS and the work you do every day via the “Share Your Story” project. Go to the Centennial Office page on InsideNPS and click on the “Share Your Story” tab for more information

If you would like to submit a question, feedback, or topic for future webchats, please email

The next webchat will be on June 4th at 2 p.m. Eastern.

[Submitted by Suki Baz, Employee Communications Specialist]

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Office of the Associate Director for Information Resources
New Radio Program Newsletter Out

The Information Resources Directorate announces the release of Volume 1, Edition 4, of its newsletter, Radio Connection, which highlights Servicewide radio program activity performed during the second quarter of FY 2014.

This issue has stories on:

  • The radio facilities condition assessment pilot project
  • Dispatch center upgrades
  • Dispatch center database development
  • OSHA concerns on tower climbing safety
  • Numerous park and region-related articles 

Past and current Radio Connection newsletters can be obtained by clicking on the “More Information” link below.

[Submitted by Carroll A. Alexander]

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Ice Age National Scenic Trail (WI)
Ice Age Trail Volunteers Honored

Volunteers for Ice Age National Scenic Trail were honored for their outstanding service on the evening of April 11th at the annual conference of the Ice Age Trail Alliance, the National Park Service’s major non-profit partner in building, maintaining, and championing the trail.

Overall, nearly 300 volunteers received recognition awards and thanks from NPS staff at the event for reaching milestones at the 100-hour, 250-hour, 500-hour, 1,000-hour, and 3,000-hour levels of volunteer service to the trail.

Three volunteers—Gary Klatt, Russell Helwig, and Gary Werner—were honored with the 4,000-hour “President’s Call to Service” Lifetime Award. Additionally, the Ice Age Trail Alliance was presented with a framed certificate signed by Director Jon Jarvis in recognition of Outstanding Partnership Achievement.

Ice Age NST is a 1,200-mile footpath spanning the entire width of Wisconsin, its route following the edge of the last glacial advance dating back more than 10,000 years. Shared volunteers of the Ice Age NST and the Ice Age Trail Alliance donate tens of thousands of hours of their time, skill, and passion each year to make the trail a reality for the estimated 1.2 million people who annually use the trail.

In Fiscal Year 2013, a documented 2,124 volunteers provided 71,278 hours of service to Ice Age NST, equating to $1,578,094.92 in private sector value.

The Ice age Trail Alliance is headquartered in Cross Plains, Wisconsin, and encourages the public to join them on the trail at one of their many work or social events. Learn more about them at

The NPS is the administrative authority of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Visit the trail website at to learn more about their role, and information about becoming an Ice Age Trail volunteer.

[Submitted by Daniel W. Watson, Volunteer Coordinator]


Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument (AZ)
GS-0025-9 Protection Ranger (Lateral)

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument is seeking applications for a lateral to a protection ranger position.  Strong law enforcement, EMS, wildland fire, and SAR skills and professional certifications are highly desired.  The park is looking for candidates who meet the following criteria:

  • NPS Level I Law Enforcement commission
  • Drug screening
  • Acceptable fitness (PEB) score according to NPS standards
  • NREMT certification
  • Spanish language proficiency (preferred not required)

The park’s visitor and resource protection operation includes wildland fire, emergency medical service, resource management, and law enforcement.  The park shares 30 miles of the international border with Mexico, so rangers work with U.S. Border Patrol on a daily basis.  Tactical operations in support of visitor protection goals are the norm.  Rangers are routinely provided opportunities to increase their certification and skill level in all disciplines.

The Sonoran Desert is a rich environment, where summers are hot and dry while fall, winter and spring conditions are pleasant.   Recreational opportunities abound for the serious outdoor enthusiast.  These are required occupancy positions; the person selected will have the option of living in park housing or in the nearby town of Ajo.  Park housing is assigned through a bid system.  Ajo has a K-12 school, a grocery store, a clinic, a bank and several local restaurants.  Home to work vehicle use is currently authorized for rangers living in Ajo.

Please submit the following documents to Kyle Greene by the close of business (4:30 p.m. MST) on Friday, May 16th:

  • A resume/application
  • An SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action (SF-50 must show current grade and tenure and/or highest permanent grade ever held).
  • A copy of your last performance appraisal

Applications/resumes may be mailed, faxed or emailed directly to Kyle Greene.  Kyle may be reached at (520) 387 7661 x 7202,  If documents are mailed to this address, they must be received by the close of business (4:30 p.m. MDT) on Thursday, May 16th.  Mailing address:  Organ Pipe Cactus NM, 10 Organ Pipe Drive, Ajo, AZ  85321.  FAX (520) 387 7663.

Questions about these positions may be directed to Supervisory Park Rangers Clay Anderson [(520) 387 7661 X 7208,] or Moses Rinck [(520) 387 7661 X 7208,]

Klondike Gold Rush - Seattle Unit National Historical Park (WA)
GS-025-11 Chief of Interpretation (Lateral)

Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park—Seattle Unit, located in the heart of Seattle, Washington, is seeking qualified candidates interested in a non-competitive lateral reassignment as the park's new chief of interpretation. The closing date for this previously announced position has been extended to May 6th.

The person selected for this position will manage NPS visitor services for Klondike Gold Rush NHP—Seattle Unit and the Bainbridge Island Japanese American Memorial, supervise the lead at the Outdoor Recreation Information Center in REI’s flagship store, and, with the help of three route co-coordinators, oversee the operation of one of the most extensive Trails and Rails programs in the country.  She/he will supervise a team of up to twelve employees and over seventy volunteers.  

The person selected will:

  • Serve as the lead technical expert on interpretation for the park
  • Be responsible for the development and coordination of annual seasonal employee training and new employee orientation
  • Serve as the point of contact for the park’s partnership with cruise lines
  • Be one of the park's lead project managers
  • Work very closely with the superintendent on long-range planning for the park’s operation
  • Assist in managing the budget and in seeking both NPS and non-government funding sources for interpretive services and park outreach
  • Serve as the park's public information officer and volunteer coordinator
  • Serve occasionally as the acting superintendent

Seattle has been rated one of the top ten cities for vacation travel in the United States, and draws visitors from all over the world.  It’s a diverse city with dozens of languages spoken within its schools.  It’s home to tech companies, lots of coffee shops, great cuisine, and multiple centers of higher learning – it is the nation's most educated city, with the highest percentage of college graduates.  

With easy access to other parks and public lands, opportunities abound to ski, kayak, camp and hike, as well as engage in urban activities.  It is possible to live within easy biking distance of the park and become a car-free urban dweller.

If you are interested in this position, please contact Superintendent Jacqueline Ashwell at 206-220-4232 for more details.

Travel, transportation, and relocation expenses will be authorized in accordance with Federal Travel Regulations. Government housing is not available. 

If you are interested, and are eligible for a non-competitive lateral reassignment, please submit the information listed below electronically to the Northwest Servicing Human Resources Office (NWSHRO) Staffing Branch located in Port Angeles, Washington.  Email address is  All applications must be received by 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time on  May 6th.

Your application package must include the following: 

  • A resume/application
  • A current SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action, documenting permanent competitive civil service status. 

For park information please visit our park’s website: 

For more information on Seattle, please visit