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Contact: Jennifer Kavanaugh, Acting Volunteer and Partnership Coordinator, (570) 426-2422
On Saturday, September 6, Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area held its annual Volunteer and Partner Appreciation Luncheon at the Montague Grange Hall #140 in Montague, NJ. "We are very grateful for all of the work accomplished by our volunteers and partner organizations. There are just some things the park would not be able to do without their valuable knowledge and assistance," said Superintendent John J. Donahue of the volunteer corps.
Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area has a very active and robust Volunteer and Partner program. Last year, the park's 825 registered Volunteers-in-Parks (VIP's) contributed a total of 109,885 hours with an overall value of $2,477,906. Numbers for 2014 are still being reported and calculated and will be available at the end of October.
Sharon Orce, Grange Master of Montague Grange #140, a park partner, was recognized as the 2014 Volunteer of the year. Through her work at the Montague Grange, Orce has provided support and promoted the values of the National Park Service (NPS) as well as The Grange. As Grange Master, Orce coordinates the organization's members and recruits volunteers to maintain the grounds and the historic building which is owned by the NPS. This year she developed and implemented a plan for a garden at the Grange where she and other volunteers helped beginner and veteran gardeners have a successful year with bumper crops. Some of the harvest was donated to needy families in the area.
Additionally, the Volunteer Group of the Year was awarded to the park's Open Space Volunteers Tom Witter, Jon Bugan, Mike Ammerman and Doug Millard. These volunteers are integral in maintaining natural areas in the park, maintaining open space, managing exotic species, and restoring wildlife habitat.
Volunteers assist with building and grounds maintenance, living history presentations, outreach and education program delivery, community garden maintenance, water safety patrols, visitor center and information desk operation, and a host of other jobs. Please contact Volunteer and Partnership coordinator Jennifer Kavanaugh at 570-426-2422 or by email at e-mail us if you are interested in becoming a VIP.