Harpers Ferry, WV (March 8, 2011) – The Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) and the National Park Service (NPS), who cooperatively manage the Appalachian National Scenic Trail are promoting Lets Move! the nationwide initiative led and launched by First Lady Michelle Obama, through two signature programs - A Trail to Every Classroom and the new Appalachian Trail Community™ program. These Appalachian Trail (A.T.) programs will link and support Let’s Move! Outside and Let’s Move! Cities and Towns initiatives by promoting healthy lifestyles to communities from Georgia to Maine.
“Let’s Move! Along the Appalachian Trail is the perfect inspirational tool to begin a lifetime of outdoor activity, adventure and self-discovery,” says Julie Judkins, Community Program Manager of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy.
The Trail To Every Classroom program is a professional development opportunity for K-12 teachers that focuses on building place-based service-learning curriculum on the A.T. Students engaged through the Trail to Every Classroom program will be encouraged to achieve the Presidential Active Lifestyle Award with a portion of their daily activity steps taking place on the A.T. Increasing physical activity is one of the 5 pillars of the Let’s Move! initiative, and the A.T. provides not only a lifelong physical activity for students and families, but also a learning laboratory for lifelong study and active citizenship. To date we have trained 230 teachers and engaged more than 15,000 students in place-based service-learning curricular activities. Our goal is to engage 50,000 students by 2015.
The Appalachian Trail Community™ program provides tools and support to local communities that capitalize on the Trail as a community asset for outdoor recreation. The program is designed to provide incentive for conservation of the Trail’s signature landscapes while giving communities the opportunity to grow rural economies that sustain rural heritage and quality of life. Launched in 2010, this program recognizes communities for their part in promoting awareness of the A.T. as an important national asset. It increases local stewardship of public lands, supports community initiatives for sustainable economic development and conservation planning and supports healthy lifestyles for community citizens. Lets Move! Cities and Towns will be promoted as a next step to the Appalachian Trail Community designation process. There are over 50 communities within two miles of the Appalachian Trail that we have the potential to engage through this program.
"Lets Move! Along the Appalachian Trail is one effort to make this national icon a relevant and valued recreational asset in local communities from Georgia to Maine", stated Rita Hennessy, Assistant Park Manager of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail.
For more information about the Trail To Every Classroom program or the Appalachian Trail Community™ program, visit www.appalachiantrail.org. For more information about the Let’s Move! initiative visit www.letsmove.gov.
About the Appalachian Trail Conservancy
The Appalachian Trail Conservancy mission is to preserve and manage the Appalachian Trail – ensuring that its vast natural beauty and priceless cultural heritage can be shared and enjoyed today, tomorrow, and for centuries to come. For more information please visit www.appalachiantrail.org.
Contact: Julie Judkins
Appalachian Trail Conservancy
Tel: 828.254.3708 x 11
Email: [email protected]