August Newsletter 2018                                                      View this email in your browser
Supporting Community through the Parks
One of our goals is to increase access to Vermont's state parks by eliminating barriers, such as modest user fees and transportation, especially for underserved communities. After all, our state parks play an important role in the health and wellbeing of all Vermonters. Read on to learn about some of the wonderful programs we supported this park season. 

Experience Literacy Camp at Woodford State Park
Experience Literacy Camp, based in southern Vermont, alternates days of literacy instruction with days of field trips in order to build background knowledge and hands on vocabulary skills for middle school students. On a recent trip to Woodford State Park, students in the camp spent the day catching (and releasing) salamanders, hiking, picnicking and swimming! VPF was excited to have the opportunity to support this program.

Adaptive Kayaking at Waterbury Center State Park
Last year, the Northeast Disabled Athletic Association launched an adaptive kayaking program holding clinics at Waterbury Center State Park. This July they returned to the park. VPF was thrilled to support such an amazing and fun program that gives individuals with mobility impairments the opportunity to paddle and enjoy the reservoir.
Ways to Support VPF's Work

Part 1: Education in the Parks Series

In a recent interview, Vermont State Parks Conservation Education Coordinator, Rebecca Roy, articulated the importance of conservation education and the role our state parks and their staff play in inspiring stewardship of natural places.  

Why is conservation education important? 
Research shows that people who enjoyed meaningful experiences in the outdoors as children are able to think critically and act responsibly on behalf of the ecological, social, and economic values of natural resources and natural places as adults. To foster a future where we still enjoy wild places, hear the songs of Loons at night, view consecutive rows of forested hills from the top of a fire tower, or wade through the cold water of wild rivers—we need to inspire people to care about these places. Conservation education provides meaningful encounters with natural and cultural resources and people, it encourages the passion to value and protect these places.

"To foster a future where we still enjoy wild places, hear the songs of Loons at night, view consecutive rows of forested hills from the top of a fire tower, or wade through the cold water of wild rivers—we need to inspire people to care about these places."

What role does education play in Vermont’s state parks? 
Education and interpretation are key pieces of the VSP mission (paraphrased): “To conserve and interpret on behalf of the people of Vermont their natural, cultural, historic, and scenic heritage, and while so doing, to provide appropriate recreational opportunities.” We tell the stories of the natural and cultural resources and histories of the most special places in Vermont. Every Vermont state park is unique and is protected for it’s own special features. We seek to connect park visitors to these places and resources through meaningful experiences. Many of these experiences are provided through interactions with our staff, tens of thousands of valuable educational opportunities happen every season.

To learn more about VSP's educational programming visit their website, follow them on Facebook, or head out into the state park closest to you.

Who says you can't eat well while camping?

Steak tips, rigatoni, ribs…these are just a few of the delicious meals Michael Barton and his son, MJ, cooked up on their two week camping excursion over the 4th of July. The two set up camp - hammocks and all - first at Woodford State Park and then Emerald Lake State Park. If you recall, it was sweltering in early July, so they were thankful for clean, refreshing water and long days at the beach!

In August, the Massachusetts natives made their way back to Vermont, camping in beautiful Smuggler's Notch State Park. They explored the nearby area and restaurants, in a addition to cooking up their own yummy meals of course! 

- Thanks Michael and MJ for sharing your story! 

We love seeing photos and hearing stories from
people who share our love for Vermont State Parks. 
Share Your Story
Business Partnerships - A Win-Win!
To date in 2018, 20 businesses have joined VPF's Business Partnership Program. This partnership provides businesses the opportunity to support our parks and gives us a chance to say thanks by providing free park passes to
business employees!

Check out the profile of one of our Park Benefactors, Mascoma Bank, below and to learn more about the 2018 program click HERE


Business Partner Profile

Since 1899, Mascoma Bank has embraced the values of mutuality and caring for the communities which we work and live in. Building a sustainable community includes protecting our natural resources and securing safe and natural locations for family and friends to gather.

“Vermont Parks Forever and their work with Vermont State Parks has secured an integral part of what makes Vermont a truly remarkable place to live” says Bank President Clay Adams. “By providing innovative educational experiences, inspiring stewardship of natural places, and improving access for underserved communities, Vermont Parks Forever truly makes a positive difference for Vermont residents”.
Muckross State Park, one of the newest Vermont State Parks, was established in July 2016 when the estate of the late State Senator Edgar May donated his former home property to the State of Vermont. The Springfield Branch Team of Mascoma Bank recently held a breakfast meeting on site and remarked at the beauty of the falls, ponds and lush forest just minutes from the heart of bustling Springfield, Vermont. We appreciate the work of Vermont Parks Forever and give thanks for providing us with this terrific park to gather, explore, and to appreciate all that nature has to offer.  
Make a Gift to Vermont Parks Forever

Vermont Parks Forever was founded in 2013 to enhance and protect Vermont State Parks through charitable and private support. We collaborate with Vermont residents, parks visitors, and state government to improve our parks for the benefits of residents and visitors alike. 

Copyright © 2018 Vermont Parks Forever, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Vermont Parks Forever
PO Box 815
Montpelier, VT 05601

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