August 31, 2015
Kathleen Sandt, Public Affairs Specialist, (570) 234-9144 (c); (570) 426-1472 (o)
Superintendent John J. Donahue announced that tomorrow, September 1, marks the 50th anniversary of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area. Fifty years ago the United States Congress responded to the grassroots efforts of the people from the Delaware River Valley and abandoned the desecration of the longest un-dammed river in the Eastern United States. Instead they created the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area without a dam or a man-made lake. At the end of the day, the river and the surrounding valley were preserved in perpetuity for future generations.
Since 1965, the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area has invited visitors to enjoy 40 miles of free flowing river and some 70,000 acres of forests and floodplains, waterfalls and marshes, beaches and mountain terrain. The park’s 186 miles of trail and 160 miles of scenic touring roads have served to provide great visitor experiences. Additionally, “Its natural setting makes it the perfect location for wildlife viewing, including black bear, deer, and a wide variety of birds,” stated Superintendent Donahue.
“Today," Donahue said, "we are focused on the future even as we pause to reflect on the past." The park is in the process of developing a Visitor Use Management Plan and a Historic Properties Management Plan so the public can help determine where the next century will take their park. “We have a vision of a sustainable operations reflecting the values of natural and historical conservation and creating an easily recognizable identity for this special place that includes education, organizational efficiency and most of all our neighbors as full partners in creating that future.” “We provide people with the opportunity to be inspired,” he added. “We invite everyone to come to the park and enjoy its beauty, experience nature, learn about its history, and spend time here with friends and family.We invite you to be inspired.”