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Contact: Katie Lawhon, 717-338-4402The orchards on the Gettysburg battlefield provided cover and concealment to soldiers during heavy fighting in July 1863. Each of the dozens of farms torn apart by the three-day battle of Gettysburg had orchards of apples, cherries, peaches, and more, now preserved by Gettysburg National Military Park.
Recruit members of the Gettysburg Foundation are raising awareness and funds for the orchards through its Seedling to Cider project. The project takes fruit grown on battlefield orchards and works with a local cidery to transform it into hard cider. Recruits are involved in the entire process—planting, pruning and picking the apples.
Recruits recently presented Gettysburg National Military Park Superintendent Ed Clark with a donation of $824 from the proceeds of the 2015 and 2016 cider sales.
“The Recruits help us with the sustainability of Gettysburg’s orchards,” said Ed Clark, Superintendent of Gettysburg National Military Park. “This younger set of Friends of Gettysburg members is helping us attract new audiences and create the next generation of park visitors, supporters and advocates.”
Last year for Giving Tuesday (#GivingTuesday), a global day of giving, Recruit members braved the cold and rain and pruned trees on the battlefield to raise awareness for the Seedling to Cider project. The event raised awareness of Gettysburg’s orchards and their sustainability.
This year for Giving Tuesday on November 29, the Recruits program will be showcasing the George Spangler farm, a Gettysburg farm and field hospital site owned by the Gettysburg Foundation and part of Gettysburg National Military Park. Recruits plan to raise $7,500 to restore the historic fruit orchard at the Spangler Farm. The fund will replant the historic orchard at the Spangler farm and re-build the historic fences nearby.
Throughout the day on November 29, the Gettysburg Foundation’s Facebook page will feature live updates and information about the project as well as a tour of the George Spangler farm by Chris Gwinn, Chief of Interpretation at Gettysburg National military Park. For more information go to: facebook.com/gettysburgvisitorcenter