Working to Enhance Community Ties
Contact: Jim Northup, 906-387-2607
Contact: Gregg Bruff, 906-387-2607
“2006 marks the Lakeshore’s 40th anniversary,” Northup said. “As part of that year of celebration, the park staff and I are committed to working even more closely with our gateway communities and local citizens who care about public lands and appreciate how special it is to have America’s first national lakeshore right here in our own backyard!”
“We are in the early stages of planning a series of events in 2006 to celebrate the 40th anniversary,” Northup said, “but we also view this as an excellent opportunity to build on existing successful programs and pursue even stronger partnerships.”
One new initiative is the park’s Community Partner Program, which will further strengthen communications and relationships with local business interests to ensure that visitors to our area have easy access to accurate and up-to-date information about the park.
Another new initiative, which will be formally announced this spring, is the Adopt-a-Trail and Adopt-a-Campsite Program. This program will solicit the support of local citizens who love to hike in the park to serve as volunteer citizen stewards of short sections of trail and/or backcountry campsites to assist the park’s paid staff in keeping these facilities in good condition for all to enjoy.
A third initiative, which will take place this summer or fall, is the park’s Experience Your Lakeshore Program. The park will invite local civic leaders and citizens to spend time in the park with park staff, as part of a structured program, to learn more about the park and park-related issues. “This program will give us a great opportunity to learn from our neighbors and to hear about their concerns as well,” Northup said. “If successful, we hope to make this an annual program.”
While not directly related to the park’s 40th anniversary, Northup also wanted local communities to be aware of the recent establishment of the National Parks of Lake Superior Fund. This new organization, associated with the National Park Foundation, has been formed to help support the four U.S. national park units on Lake Superior: Isle Royale National Park, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, and Grand Portage National Monument.
“This organization will be conducting a variety of fund raising activities to help us protect park resources and improve visitor services at these four parks,” Northup said. “We are very grateful for their support and energy for our parks.”
In announcing these initiatives, Northup said, “We are very proud to be a part of such a beautiful and interesting area and hope that local citizens will join with us in celebrating and supporting the park during this very special year.”
For more information about any of these programs, please contact National Lakeshore Headquarters at 906-387-2607.