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Woodstock, VT (June, 2014) – Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park and the Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Program are among 37 national parks/programs selected to receive a 2014 Active Trails grant from the National Park Foundation, the official charity of America’s national parks.
Now in its sixth year, the Active Trails program supports healthy living by getting people out and active in national parks through projects that help restore, protect, and/or create land and water trails across the country. These projects include hands-on learning, hiking, kayaking, snowshoeing, volunteering, and more.
“Through the Active Trails program, people across the country are connecting with their national parks, discovering more ways to lead active and healthy lives, and giving back to the places they love,” said Neil Mulholland, President and CEO of the National Park Foundation. “These grants are critical to helping with ongoing efforts to maintain and enhance the 17,000 miles of land and water trails across the National Park System.”
The NPS Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Program (RTCA) has begun working with the Upper Valley Trails Alliance (UVTA) to develop a High School Trail Corps in the Upper Valley Region.
This initiative builds upon a long time partnership that has worked to celebrate trails through events, active community stewardship, and educational programming. Working with technical support from the RTCA program and Marsh Billings Rockefeller National Historical Park, the UVTA is creating a Trail Corps of 39 local youth from 11 different schools, ranging from Thetford Academy in Vermont to Stevens High School in New Hampshire, to participate in the second year of an Upper Valley High School Trail Corps.
Participants will perform work on numerous trails throughout the Upper Valley, learning about the natural world via UVTA and Park Service staff and guests, and learning vital life skills through teamwork and other outdoor activities. Many of the Corps projects will complement the work of other youth crews that are working in the Upper Valley this summer, including other crews working at Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller NHP. Michael Creasey, Superintendent of Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller NHP said, “The goal of the Corps is to connect and engage local high school students from a broad cross-section of Upper Valley communities, encouraging female and male outdoor leadership skills development, and working to increase participation in trail volunteerism, while having fun outdoors together. The National Park is excited to have these local youth work at our Park, and we expect the youth and Park staff will both gain from the experience. One highlight will be building upon the work done by past youth crews to rehabilitate the historic Faulkner Trail, which provides a critical access to the National Park.”
Since 2008, the National Park Foundation has granted nearly $2.4 million through its Active Trails program. To date, Active Trails has engaged more than 5,900 volunteers and 327 project partners who combined have contributed more than 30,000 hours to help promote, refurbish or build national park trails that were ultimately enjoyed by 331,000 visitors.
“The National Park Foundation’s Active Trails program provides vital funding that supports our national parks as centers of healthy outdoor activity for families and communities across the nation,” said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. “The land and water trails maintained by the National Park Service invite visitors to explore natural and cultural beauty, and these grants will expand these great opportunities to even more visitors.”
The National Park Foundation wishes to thank The Coca-Cola Company, The Coca-Cola Foundation, Disney, the Scrooby Foundation, and Subaru for their generous support of the Active Trails program.
The 2014 Active Trails grantees include:
Appalachian National Scenic Trail
Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area
Assateague Island National Seashore
Baltimore National Heritage Area
Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area
Booker T. Washington National Monument
Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area
Buffalo National River
Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area
Cane River Creole National Historical Park
Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site
Chickasaw National Recreation Area
Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park
Essex National Heritage Area
Flagstaff Area National Monuments
Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument
Fort Stanwix National Monument
Gateway National Recreation Area
Grand Teton National Park
Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site
Kings Mountain National Military Park
Lake Clark National Park and Preserve
Lassen Volcanic National Park
Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park
National Park Service Chesapeake Bay Office
Nez Perce National Historical Park
Olympic National Park
Oregon National Historic Trail and California National Historic Trail
Palo Alto Battlefield National Historical Park
River Raisin National Battlefield Park
Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Program
Rock Creek Park
Saint Croix National Scenic Riverway
Salt River Bay National Historic Park and Ecological Preserve
Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area
Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks
Timpanogos Cave National Monument
Wheeling National Heritage Area
A listing of these parks and their Active Trails project descriptions can be found on the National Park Foundation website.
For more information on the National Park Foundation and how you can support and protect America’s national parks, please visit www.nationalparks.org. For more information on the National Park Service, please visit www.nps.gov.
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.