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Shenandoah National Park will launch a year-long celebration of the 75th anniversary of its establishment with a ceremony at McCormick Gap Overlook at milepost 102 on Skyline Drive at 2:00 p.m. on November 5, 2010. Shenandoah National Park Superintendent Martha Bogle will receive the "mantle of celebration" from Phil Francis, superintendent of the Blue Ridge Parkway, whose 75th anniversary celebration took place in 2010. Due to limited space along Skyline Drive, parking for the event will be at Afton Mountain on Route 250, and shuttles will provide transportation to the ceremony at the McCormick Gap Overlook. Shuttle service will begin at 12:30.
The program will feature remarks by Alisa Bailey, President and CEO of the Virginia Tourism Corporation, followed by "A Journey Through the Decades," a program marking the milestones of achievements and honoring Shenandoah's partners. Among the participants will be Matthew Mesher, great-great grandson of President Herbert Hoover, whose Rapidan Camp retreat lies within what is now the boundary of Shenandoah National Park; Robert Jacobsen, former Shenandoah National Park superintendent; and Mike Breeden, descendent of former residents of the land from which the park was created. Hammered dulcimer player, Madeline MacNeil will provide entertainment at the overlook from 1:00 until 2:00.
In announcing the event, Superintendent Bogle remarked, "We are excited about the beginning of this year-long celebration of Shenandoah National Park. We look forward to remembering the vision and dedication of the park's early supporters, the sacrifice of the residents and landowners, and inspiring a new generation of park stewards."
For more information about the 75th Anniversary go to www.celebrateshenandoah.org.