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Volunteers Work to Create & Maintain Memorial Landscape at Flight 93 National Memorial During National Park Week
EFFORT CONTINUES WITH FOURTH ANNUAL TREE PLANTING
Washington, D.C. (March 20, 2015) On April 17-18 the National Park Service, the National Park Foundation, and Friends of Flight 93 National Memorial are continuing a major reforestation effort that will eventually result in 150,000 new trees at Flight 93 National Memorial, the nation’s permanent memorial to the 40 passengers and crew of United Flight 93, and all of those lost on September 11, 2001.
Every year during National Park Week, America’s national parks host public events and coordinate volunteer opportunities to celebrate the special occasion. For a fourth year, Flight 93 National Memorial will honor National Park Week with Plant a Tree at Flight 93. This event is one of the many activities the National Park Service will offer as part of the 2016 Centennial celebration. The goal of the National Park Service Centennial is to connect with and create the next generation of park visitors, supporters, and advocates.
The tree-planting events will take place from on . Businesses and organizations have already committed to providing more than 150 volunteers each day, but 50 additional individuals are still needed each day to complete the work. All interested volunteers must pre-register online (first-come, first-serve) and be at least 14 years of age. Flight 93 National Memorial will still be open to the public during regular visiting hours (, with last entry at ) on the days of the tree-planting effort.
New this year, special teams of volunteers will begin to remove invasive species such as autumn olive which threaten the native plants at the memorial, including the tree seedlings that are being planted. Teams will remove these plants near the current tree planting site as well as other key areas at the memorial under the direction of invasive species specialists.
To date, over 1,500 volunteers have assisted with planting over 52,000 tree seedlings at Flight 93 National Memorial. This year, a team of more than 400 volunteers under the guidance of tree-planting experts will have the special opportunity to continue this effort and plant an additional 22,000 seedlings at the memorial. According to Keith Newlin, Western Pennsylvania National Parks Deputy Superintendent, “The 32-acres planted by volunteers this year will begin the development of the Tower of Voices site. We are working with the architect to implement the planned memorial landscape.”
Many sponsors have joined with the National Park Foundation to make this effort possible including Arbor Day Foundation, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Roy A. Hunt Foundation and The UPS Foundation.
Additional National Park Service partners include the American Chestnut Foundation; Appalachian Regional Commission; Appalachian Regional Reforestation Initiative; Department of Agriculture, U.S. Forest Service; Department of Interior, Office of Surface Mining, Reclamation, and Enforcement and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Green Forests Work, Home Depot; REI; Indiana University of Pennsylvania; Penn State University Altoona; Penn State University DuBois; Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of Forestry; Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Bureau of Abandoned Mine Reclamation; Pennsylvania Game Commission; Starbucks, Somerset.
As a kick-off to National Park Week, visitors can enjoy a Fee Free Weekend on April 18 and 19 at all national parks nationwide. For a full listing of all National Park Week events in Pennsylvania and across the country, go to www.nationalparkweek.org.
ABOUT FLIGHT 93 NATIONAL MEMORIAL
On September 24, 2002, President Bush signed into law the Flight 93 National Memorial Act. The Act created a new national park unit to commemorate the passengers and crew of Flight 93 who, on September 11, 2001, courageously gave their lives thereby thwarting a planned attack on our nation’s capital. The memorial is near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where Flight 93 crashed with the loss of its 40 passengers and crew. For more information on Flight 93 National Memorial visit www.nps.gov/flni.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE
More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 401 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at: www.nps.gov.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION
The National Park Foundation is the official charity of America’s national parks and nonprofit partner to the National Park Service. Chartered by Congress in 1967, the National Park Foundation raises private funds to help PROTECT more than 84 million acres of national parks through critical conservation and preservation efforts, CONNECT all Americans with their incomparable natural landscapes, vibrant culture and rich history, and INSPIRE the next generation of park stewards. Find out more and become a part of the national park community at www.nationalparks.org.
ABOUT THE FRIENDS OF FLIGHT 93 NATIONAL MEMORIAL
Established in 2009, the Friends of Flight 93 National Memorial is the official non-profit supporting partner of Flight 93 National Memorial. The Friends focus on awareness, education, volunteer support, preservation and stewardship. The Friends of Flight 93 is a registered 501 (c)3 organization, donations to which are tax-deductible. The Friends of Flight 93 membership includes family and friends of the passengers and crew of Flight 93, people nationwide who have been inspired by these acts of courage, and many residents of Western Pennsylvania who want to be part of the Friends' mission in a hands-on way. To learn more about the Friends or to make a donation to support the memorial, visit www.Flight93Friends.org.