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Contact: Maria Beotegui-Zapata, 305-230-1144, x 3078
Biscayne National Park and the South Florida Community Partners will host a March for Parks event on Saturday, March 29 from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. The free event, held annually each spring, aims to promote National Park awareness, and to introduce new audiences to South Florida's National Parks. More than 300 people are expected to participate in this year’s event that will include a host of hands-on activities highlighting Biscayne’s coral reef ecosystem. This theme was chosen in recognition of 2008 as The International Year of the Reef, a worldwide campaign to raise awareness about the value and importance of coral reefs and threats to their sustainability and to motivate people to take action to protect them.
"Youth, coming from diverse communities such as Little Haiti, Overtown, and Liberty City, will join with others from as far away as Broward County and as near as the park gateway cities of Homestead and Florida City to experience the outdoors in a positive way," said Park Superintendent Mark Lewis. "Through these types of programs and events, we are exposing young people to nature, particularly underserved and urban youth who might not have opportunities to experience the outdoors. This helps educate the next generation of public-land stewards," he said.
Kicking off the day’s activities will be an unveiling of new interpretive exhibits that have been installed along the boardwalk adjacent to Biscayne’s Dante Fascell Visitor Center, located at 9700 SW 328th Street in Homestead. These exhibits, funded in part by a grant from the South Florida National Parks Trust, are the first park products to be developed in English, Spanish and Haitian Creole to better meet the needs of the local and regional residents.
Contributions from numerous public, private and non-profit organizations will provide free bus transportation, free lunches, and raffle prizes. Free bus transportation will be provided from the following locations:
- Golden Glades Park and Ride
Intersection of I-95 and SR 826 (pick up at 8:30 a.m.)
- Overtown NET Center
1490 NW 3rd Avenue (pick up at 9:00 a.m.)
- Notre Dame Catholic Church
110 NE 62 St (pick up at 8:30 a.m.)
- Orange Bowl
1501 NW Third Street (pick up at 9:00 a.m.)(bus will also stop at Douglas Road Metro Station)
- Broward Blvd Tri-Rail Station
Broward Blvd & I-95 (pick up at 8:30 a.m.)
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Metrorail Station, 6205 NW 27 Avenue (pick up at 9:00 a.m.)
- Dadeland South Metrorail Station
9150 Dadeland Blvd (pick up at 9:00 a.m.)
- Florida City City Hall
404 West Palm Drive (pick up at 9:00 a.m.)
For more information on March for Parks, call 305-644-9000. More specific information on the International Year of the Reef can be found at www.iyor.org.