Friday, October 12, 2007

National Public Lands Day Report

After a tremendously successful summer, the first season of the Mount Rainier Recovery program came to a triumphant close recently with a final, festive day of hands-on service and celebration.

Over 150 enthusiastic individuals of all ages showed up on this chilly autumn day to honor the park and National Public Lands Day and do one more favor for the mountain. Most of the volunteers were people who had served the park this summer and were returning to connect with others who had been part of this marvelous effort. The feeling of camaraderie was evident in smiling faces and cheerful conversation as we worked on projects of re-routing a washed-out trail, clearing debris from a flooded campground, and planting willows in flood-damaged areas.

Park Superintendent Dave Uberuaga spent the day smiling broadly and thanking volunteers. After a celebratory barbeque dinner, he addressed the group, expressing deep gratitude for everything the attendees and others have done to help the park this season. The numbers are still being tallied, but at least 1,600 volunteers have come to the park’s aid this year, contributing an unprecedented 67,000 hours of service. Over half the trail work completed in the park this summer was done by volunteers. The monetary value of this service donated to the park exceeds 1.3 million dollars.

SCA is honored to have been a leader in the Mount Rainier Recovery effort this year, and we’re already working to build on this momentum for even greater accomplishments at Mount Rainier in the coming year. We would like to extend our most sincere appreciation to all of you who have contributed your time, energy, or savings to SCA and the Mount Rainier Recovery program.

We’d like to leave you with a few of our favorite memories from the summer. Here's a link to several videos highlighting the experiences of some SCA members who made this summer such a success.

Jill Baum
Program Director
SCA Mount Rainier Recovery

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