Shenandoah National Park Kicks Off 75th Anniversary Planning
The staff of Shenandoah National Park has begun planning for a year long celebration of the park’s 75th Anniversary. Over 30 people from local county governments, partner organizations and tourism professionals have volunteered their time to work with park staff to engage local communities and ensure a terrific celebration of one of the nations most treasured places. The mission of the anniversary celebration is to inspire the public to value the park resources in Shenandoah’s Blue Ridge Mountains and infuse surrounding communities in the Shenandoah Valley and Virginia Piedmont with a sense of ownership and pride in the park and region.
Generous donations by the Shenandoah National Park Association and the Shenandoah National Park Trust will assist in getting planning off the ground. The Shenandoah National Park Association has hired Donna Bedwell as 75th Anniversary Coordinator. As coordinator, Bedwell will provide essential liaison functions between the National Park Service and the members of the Shenandoah National Park 75th Anniversary Committee in the planning and coordination of 75th Anniversary events and commercial activies related to the 75th Anniversary.
Bedwell’s previous professional experiences as Product Manager for Plow & Hearth, Marketing Director for Montpelier, and Orange County Director of Tourism will benefit the planning of the anniversary events for the Park and the surrounding communities. Bedwell said, “As a native of the mountains of Virginia, I have a deep personal respect for Shenandoah National Park and look forward to sharing that sense of heritage and preservation through the celebration activities.” She lives in Locust Grove, Virginia with her husband Michael.
One of the first tasks facing Bedwell and the Anniversary committee will be to establish a website, which will showcase “all things 75th”, including events and merchandise. Website design has been made possible through a grant by the Shenandoah National Park Trust.
Did You Know?
American chestnut trees, whose trunks were killed off by a fungus blight long ago, still send up shoots that you can see along many of Shenandoah National Park’s trails.