NPT News - April 2012

APRIL 2012 ISSUE

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NPT News

Our mission: Preserving parks today; Creating park stewards for tomorrow. 

National Kids to Parks Day – May 19, 2012

With three weeks to go before the Second Annual National Kids to Parks Day, National Park Trust reports more than 50,000 registrants in 45 states have pledged to participate, 219 cities and towns have passed resolutions and the governors of Colorado, Washington and West Virginia have signed proclamations declaring May 19th National Kids to Parks Day. Families can join the fun and sign up online at NPT's web site www.kidstoparks.org
 
State of Washington Governor Christine O. Gregoire, who is Chair of the Western Governors' Association, believes encouraging families to get outdoors and visit America's parks will introduce a new generation to our country's outdoor treasures. "By launching National Kids to Parks Day, National Park Trust is inviting families to engage the outdoors, similar to what we have done by encouraging families to Get Out West!, and enjoy the natural beauty and adventure in our parks."
 
To read the full press release for this year's event, click here.

The 12th Bruce F. Vento Public Service Award – June 13, 2012                                        

National Park Trust will be honoring Senator Jeff Bingaman of New Mexico with the 2012 Bruce F. Vento Public Service Award during an evening reception on June 13th at the Newseum in Washington, DC.

Established in 2000 to honor the memory and legacy of Bruce F. Vento, a twelve-term Congressman from Minnesota, the Vento Award honors a public servant for his or her commitment to the environment, and his or her service, skill and innovation in support of our public lands. This year, National Park Trust is pleased to honor Senator Bingaman for his outstanding record in park preservation and environmental stewardship. Click here to read the full press release detailing the Senator's many achievements in the protection and preservation of our nation's treasured public lands.

All proceeds from the event benefit NPT's park preservation and youth education programs. We would like to recognize and thank our early lead sponsors for this year’s event:

The Civil War in New Mexico?

                    

When you think of the Civil War, New Mexico doesn’t usually come to mind. But early in the War, the Confederates hatched a grand plan for the West to raise a force in Texas, march up the Rio Grande, take Santa Fe, turn northeast on the Santa Fe Trail, capture the stores at Fort Union, head up to Colorado to capture the gold fields, and then turn west to take California. 
 
The dream was halted 150 years ago by Union Forces at Glorietta Pass, now the site of Pecos National Historical Park. By July 1862, all Confederate Troops had vacated New Mexico Territory and for the duration of the Civil War, New Mexico remained under Union control.
 
NPT, the Trust for Public Land and the Civil War Trust are jointly advocating for Land and Water Conservation Fund acquisition resources to protect lands in Pecos and in two other Civil War Battlefields – Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park in Georgia and Virginia’s Fredericksburg Spotsylvania National Military Park.

DC-Metro Students Getting to Know their Wild Neighbors

                                

National Park Trust, in collaboration with a wide array of partners, is organizing the Washington, DC launch of the international Get to Know contest on April 30th. The launch event will promote the national expansion of the contest which invites young people (19 years and younger) to spend more time outdoors and submit original works of art, writing, photography, video or music inspired by the natural world. On April 30th, third and sixth grade Buddy Bison students from DC metro-area public, public charter and private schools will take a trek through the wilds of the U.S. Botanic Garden.
 
The Buddy Bison students who attend the Washington, DC event will take part in a scavenger hunt as they discover six exciting and informative stations that will teach them about the outdoors, environmental science and the importance of conserving our nation's parks and public lands. All students across the country are invited to enter the contest which runs until July 16th.
 
A special thanks to our host the U.S. Botanic Garden and our partners and collaborators who are helping to make the event possible:

Speak Up for Conservation! 

Each year the oil and gas industry gives the federal government $900 million for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). Historically, less than half of those funds are used for their intended purpose.

LWCF was created to offset the loss of one natural resource – oil and gas – by using a portion of drilling fees to protect important land and water elsewhere. The money is meant for creating and conserving community parks and public lands. But a loophole allows the government to divert the fund for unrelated purposes.

Fortunately, there are members of Congress who support LWCF. The Land and Water Conservation Act, which guarantees $700 million of dedicated funding to the LWCF is the first step toward getting full funding for LWCF. Speak up for conservation: urge your representative to pass the Land and Water Conservation Funding Act as part of the House Transportation Bill – or the LWCF could disappear, taking with it the promise of public land.

Buddy Bison Featured in National Geographic Kids™ Book                           

Buddy Bison is featured in National Geographic Kids™ first ever National Parks Guide U.S.A.! The guide is loaded with interesting facts and full-color photographs that are sure to get kids excited about visiting our treasured national parks. 

There is also a National Parks Guide of the United States available for adults which offers extensive information for planning the perfect park trip and is packed with more color photographs (380) and detailed color maps (80) than any other parks guidebook on the market.

 
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National Park Trust  /  401 E. Jefferson Street, Suite 102  /  Rockville, MD 20850  /  Email: adam@parktrust.org  /  www.parktrust.org