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Contact: Tom Ulrich, 231-326-5134
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is slated to receive about $2.2 million of the $750 million stimulus funding allocated for national parks under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. “In an economic environment filled with less than desirable news, it was a pleasant surprise for Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore to be included in the funding announcement by Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar,” said Superintendent Dusty Shultz. “This funding will not only stimulate the local and state economy, but will also help us provide an improved experience for the 1.2 million visitors to the park each year.” The projects approved for the Lakeshore include:
Rehabilitation of the historic village of Glen Haven: The Glen Haven Village Historic District is the best surviving example of a Great Lakes port village. It served as a frontier wooding station and steamboat stop between 1857 and 1931. This project will improve visitor access by improving and relocating parking areas and constructing sidewalks, picnic facilities, boardwalks to the beach, viewing platforms, and restoring over 1,500 feet of historic boardwalk. The project will also rehabilitate historic structures for visitor use and park operations. The Cannery building housing the Great Lakes boat museum will be repaired and access improved. The fish tug Aloha will be relocated and made accessible and the existing site restored. New interpretive exhibits will be provided. The work will be accomplished through a combination of contracts and additional park personnel.
Repair of hiking trails: More than 15 miles of trails, including sections of the Platte Plains, Good Harbor Bay, Shauger Hill, and North Manitou Island trails will be rehabilitated. Trails will be brushed, tread surfaces repaired, and erosion control devices cleaned, repaired, and installed. Trail markers and signs will be repaired or replaced. The work will be accomplished through a combination of additional park personnel and local youth corps.
Removal of invasive baby’s breath plants: The baby’s breath project will eradicate this highly invasive non-native plant from critical habitat areas of the endangered piping plover and threatened Pitcher’s thistle. Through a partnership between The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and National Park Service (NPS), over 300 acres of baby’s breath has been removed from Lakeshore lands since 2007. This project would enable this partnership to treat an additional 200 acres of Lakeshore dunes in 2009 and 2010. Baby’s breath has escaped cultivation to displace native vegetation and impede natural dune movement. This work, too, will be accomplished through a combination of additional park personnel and local youth corps.
“We are pleased to receive this much-needed funding,” said Superintendent Shultz. “It will allow us to complete projects that would have taken years of fee revenue to accomplish, or may not have been accomplished at all. The Recovery Act is going to put people to work making our beautiful beaches, forests, and historic features more accessible and enjoyable for Lakeshore visitors.”
For the full list of NPS Recovery Act projects by state, go to: http://recovery.doi.gov/docs/nps/nps_state_projects.pdf
All projects are NPS priorities and meet the Recovery Act's rigorous criteria of addressing highest mission needs, generating the largest number of jobs in the shortest period of time, and creating lasting value for the American people.
For more information on Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, please see our website or call the Park Headquarters at (231) 326-5134.