Harpers Ferry, WV (April 26, 2011)
– On May 2, 2011, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC), Potomac Appalachian Trail Club, town leaders from both Harpers Ferry and Bolivar, and local citizens, will hold a ceremony celebrating Harpers Ferry and Bolivar designation as the newest Appalachian Trail Community™. Mayors Robert (Bob) J. Hardy and James (Jim) A. Addy will join together with ATC’s Executive Director, Dave Startzell in signing a proclamation of support.
The Appalachian Trail Community™designation program is a new program of the nonprofit managers of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail (A.T.). Launched in 2010, this program recognizes communities for their part in promoting awareness of the A.T. as an important national and local resource. Towns, counties and communities along the A.T.’s corridor are considered assets by A.T. hikers, and many of these towns act as good friends and neighbors to the Trail.
At 12:15 pm, the designation ceremony will take place at the Appalachian Trail Conservancy Headquarters’ Visitor Center, located a short walk from the A.T. in historic Harpers Ferry. The Visitor Center is a major milestone for all who set out to hike the A.T. in its entirety, situated a little more than one thousand miles from the southern terminus along the estimated 2,180 mile Trail that stretches from Georgia to Maine. The Visitor Center is co-located with the ATC's administrative headquarters, home to 25 full time employees.
Bolivar and Harpers Ferry are celebrating their Appalachian Trail Community™ designation by welcoming hikers, students and trail enthusiasts to the area. The ceremony will highlight the all the joint work towards identifying how the community can better embrace visitors, specifically those who are engage in outdoor recreation along both the C&O Canal and the Appalachian Trail.
“This designation is a result of educational, service and promotional activities that Harpers Ferry and Bolivar have in partnership with the Appalachian National Scenic Trail,” stated Canal Town Partnership member Chris Craig.
“The ATC is proud to celebrate communities that are helping to protect and promote the Appalachian Trail,” stated Julie Judkins, Community Program Manager of the ATC. “These new partnerships will increase local stewardship of public lands, support community initiatives for sustainable economic development and conservation planning, as well as support healthy lifestyles for community citizens.”
The ATC was founded in 1925 by volunteers and federal officials who were working to build a continuous footpath along the Appalachian Mountains. It is focused solely on preserving and managing the A.T. to ensure that its vast natural beauty and priceless cultural heritage can be shared and enjoyed today, tomorrow, and for centuries to come. Volunteers typically donate more than 200,000 hours a year on trail-related work. About 2 to 3 million visitors walk a portion of the A.T. each year.
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]