fbpx
 

Park Needs List 2020




See a program you love?

Your gifts help us fulfill this Park Support List each year and make a huge difference for the park. Make a donation in support of a program today!


Resource Management & Science

Maintain Protection of Fraser Firs at Purchase Knob       $ 2,500

A genetic preservation planting of Fraser fir was established by the park and University of TN at Purchase Knob in 1995. Fraser fir has been damaged throughout its range by a European insect, balsam woolly adelgid, and this plantation represents genetic material from representative fir populations across the park’s highest peaks. The trees are treated with horticultural oil each summer to control balsam woolly adelgid in an effort to preserve the genetic diversity of park Fraser firs. The plantation also represents important early successional high elevation bird habitat.

Suppress Hemlock Woolly Adelgid Infestation                    $ 70,000

The Friends stepped up in 2003 to help the park begin the nation’s most ambitious and successful treatment programs for hemlock woolly adelgid. Throughout the range of hemlock, from North Georgia to Canada, the Smokies has set an example for hemlock preservation. Over 300,000 individual hemlock trees have been hand-treated with park staff, averaging 30,000 trees annually.  These are valuable resources for park campgrounds, picnic areas and high visitation trails.   In addition, more than 5,000 acres of hemlock-dominated forest have been set aside as special conservation areas, keeping this ecologically important species on the native forest landscape for habitat and watershed protection. The project includes an integrated pest management approach to control HWA initially with insecticide and simultaneously establishing a natural predator prey balance with biological control in the form of predatory beetles. Since biological control began in 2003, the park has released over 600,000 predator beetles as part of the landscape-level control effort. Annual monitoring protocols show that a single systemic treatment costing approximately 10 cents per inch diameter can protect a tree for up to seven years, an affordable option that is saving the park monies in the long run! Friends’ funds have also served as a valuable match to leverage other grants for the hemlock program.

Public Safety Treatment of Ash Trees                                   $ 10,000

Emerald Ash Borer, a non-native wood boring beetle that feeds on both species of ash trees in the park, has been confirmed along the Gatlinburg Trail, Greenbrier Road, Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail, Little River Road, Cades Cove and along the northeast boundary of the park. This proposal is for systemic treatment of ash trees in developed areas (campgrounds, picnic areas, parking areas) to prevent hazard tree danger and to treat high ecological value backcountry ash. Some of the trees under threat from EAB exceed 30 inches in diameter and are in good to excellent health. Without treatment trees often die within three years of first signs of infestation, creating hazard trees along roads, in campgrounds, picnic areas and along popular trails.

Support Appalachian Bear Rescue (ABR)                              $ 3,000

Each year a number of orphaned or injured park bears are treated and housed in the nonprofit ABR center in Townsend until they can be released back into the park.  Prior to the creation of ABR, most of these animals were euthanized.

Reduce Backcountry Bear Problems with Food Storage Cable Systems                                                                                       $ 8,000

Each backcountry campsite and shelter has a pulley and cable system which campers are required to use to hoist their food and packs out of the reach of bears for the increased safety of both visitors and bears.  Each year a number of these systems are damaged through use or by falling trees and must be replaced.

Bear Management Project                                                        $ 4,200

These funds will enable wildlife biologists to purchase new and/or refurbish old black bear GPS radio collars.  These collars will be used when DNA analysis is needed to track bears suspected of a bear attack or other significant human/bear interaction while we wait on confirmation of matches between the attack and the suspect bear.  These collars are also being used for pilot research projects to determine what happens to conflict bears that are relocated out of the park, as well as, the effectiveness of aversive conditioning tools on bears.

Bearwise Digital Messaging                                                      $ 5,000

These funds will be used to partner with the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency as part of their black bear digital messaging/education program.  In 2019, TWRA targeted the Gatlinburg area for about 3 months and was able to reach nearly 1.8 million visitors using this digital marketing technology.  In 2020, they are looking to expand the program and develop partnerships with other communities including Townsend and Pittman Center.

Elk Management and Monitoring                                          $ 15,700

These funds will allow us to purchase immobilization drugs, tags, GPS collars, aversive conditioning supplies, and capture equipment. These monies will also help us support staffing needs to repair exclosures and other work activities associated with the elk program.  This works helps us better manage elk populations and model population survival and reproduction rates.

Wildlife Program Operational Support (4 seasonal employees)               $94,000

These funds are used to hire seasonal field staff to conduct wild hog control.  The positions work from December through June, the most efficient and effective time of year to control hogs. The efforts of these positions are the primary reason we have been able to keep the hog population relatively low.  A seasonal technician is also hired during the summer to support elk monitoring, as well as, assist with human-bear and human-elk conflicts.

Cades Cove and Cataloochee Field Management                $ 21,500

As a part of our grassland management and restoration efforts in Cades Cove and Cataloochee, fields are kept open by several methods to help provide varied habitats for turkey, coyote, fox, rabbit, deer, bear, elk in Cataloochee, and ground nesting birds such as quail.  Some fields are mowed after nesting season, while others are burned in the gradual process to restore areas to native meadow habitat. These funds help support mowing operations.

Cades Cove Prescribed Fire Treatment for Field Management                                    $ 15,000

As mentioned above, prescribed fire is an important part of the integrated grassland management and restoration efforts in Cades Cove. The use of prescribed fire in designated units will reduce exotic plant species, encourage the establishment and spread of native forbs and grasses, and reduce woody encroachment into fields.

Cades Cove Historic Field Restoration                                                                            $11,000

There are smaller patches of land at Cades Cove that are not effectively treated with prescribed fire. This project uses mowers and large masticators which effectively reduce the heavy woody debris that has accumulated in certain units. The ultimate goal of the project is to restore the establishment of native forbs and grasses in these areas to a point where they can be maintained with prescribed fire

Air Quality and Meteorological Monitoring                         $ 19,800

These funds will enable the park to continue to maintain the long-term monitoring data set for ozone and meteorological monitoring at Cades Cove and the critical high elevation weather station at Cove Mountain, which provides the park with the mountain wave and wind gust information.  This will provide the state, EPA, and the park information on protecting and maintaining air quality public health standards and timely information for park staff and visitors to help them evaluate the air quality and weather conditions.

Mercury Monitoring                                                                 $ 8,500

Mercury deposition and bioaccumulation in the food web at the park is a significant concern.  Recent results show that mercury deposited from the atmosphere is being detected at unhealthy levels in some of the park’s streams and rivers in smallmouth bass.  It has also been shown to be at high levels in certain salamanders and bird species.  Mercury has been monitored in the park since 2002, and the funding will support that annual operation (total and methyl-mercury sampling and measurements) at Clingmans Dome and Elkmont.

Fisheries Program Support (2 seasonal employees)             $ 17,900

Funds be used to support restoration work for the Blotchside Darter in Abrams Creek and Brook Trout in Anthony and Little Cataloochee Creeks. Field staff will help collect fin clips for genetics, monitor population abundance, and collect and translocate both species back into restored creek sections.

All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory (ATBI) Support                  $ 8,200

The ATBI has been underway for over 20 years and we now have a very good understanding of what species are here for some groups. However, others groups are problematic. This work will allow scientists to better determine expected diversity levels of problematic groups so that future inventories can target specific endpoints that allow us to reach completion of the ATBI . Information will be gathered from primary literature, directly from taxonomic authorities, and through statistical analyses and determining ratios among groups.

Scientific Research Support                                                     $ 8,000

This funding directly supports research needs originating from the park. At times, issues and questions come up that need immediate response before traditional research funding may become available. Recent examples of projects include the green tree frog survey, wildlife disease and genetic work in Cades Cove.

Web Cams                                                                                $ 10,200

This funding will support the upkeep and maintenance of web cams at Clingmans Dome (May-Oct) and Newfound Gap (year-round) to provide daily images (every 15 minutes) as well as weather data for park staff and visitors. The weather data, including ambient temperature, relative humidity, precipitation, and snow depth, will provide timely information for park staff and visitors to help them prepare for travel in the park.

Vegetation Mapping Project (Seasonal Staffing Support)              $ 24,000

Support Vital Signs monitoring of vegetation and soil quality across the park.

Cherokee Gathering Permit Monitoring (Seasonal Staffing Support)                                                                                    $ 24,000

These funds will enable field staff to monitor sochan gathering as part of the Gathering Agreement with the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indian along with the collection of inventory data on plants likely to be requested for gathering in the future.

Collections Preservation Center Specialized Equipment and Supplies                                  $ 7,000

With the completion of the collections unpacking and processing, the museum staff has identified the need for a dedicated cleaning space for potentially hazardous materials including mold and mildew. These funds will be used to purchase a ductless hood and isolation cabinet to be set up in the Collections Preservation Center loading bay along with storage supplies for archaeological and historical collections.

Conservation of Cumberland Jack Saddlebags                      $ 4,500

The Cumberland Jack/Smokemont Jack Saddlebags used by Paul Adams and his dog during the initial development of Mount LeConte require at least 24 hours of conservation work as identified by the 2018 Leather Collection Condition Survey.  The requested $4500 would include the treatment, the construction of a new storage and display mount as well as shipping and handling costs. Treatment is necessary to address red rot, mold, stitching tears and leather curling.

Cemetery Rehabilitation and Restoration                            $ 27,400

These monies will fund a cemetery rehabilitation project focusing on vegetation restoration to address erosion issues within park cemeteries. The park cares for 150 cemeteries, many of which are in need of erosion mitigation as well as headstone cleaning and repair. The park conducts general maintenance at a majority of these cemeteries on a cyclic basis (making sure trails are accessible, trimming grass, and removing downed tree limbs). However, cyclic maintenance does not address more complex problems such as landscape erosion, hazard trees, or headstone resetting and repair. Through this project, the park will prioritize cemetery rehabilitation needs, develop a general vegetation restoration plan, and complete restoration of up to three cemeteries as part of a pilot to determine efficacy.

Resource Education

Parks as Classrooms Program                                               $ 68,230

These funds support the field staff to provide curriculum based education programs to approximately 20,000 students and training workshops for an average of 400 teachers each year. The staff also provide summer youth program and run the high school intern project. Education

programs are held in TN at Sugarlands, Cades Cove and Twin Creeks and in NC at Purchase Knob, Deep Creek, Oconaluftee and Clingmans Dome. These hands-on, ranger-led lessons utilizing the park as an enormous outdoor classroom help foster a love for nature and inform the next generation of park supporters.

Kathryn K. McNeil Education Specialist at Purchase Knob          $ 68,000

The Kathryn K. McNeil endowment funds support the education program at the Appalachians Highlands Science Learning Center at Purchase Knob. This program places an emphasis on working with NC schools and youth organizations. (Kathryn K. McNeil Endowment)

Park Liaison with Cherokee School                                       $ 60,800

To fund a coordinator for an educational partnership between the park and Cherokee Middle School as well as introducing curriculum to all gateway community schools in NC through the development of educational trunk materials. The coordinator will develop, implement, and evaluate a planned curriculum used to educate children about the cultural and natural resources of the Smokies. (Cherokee Preservation Foundation Grant)

Cherokee Central Schools STEM Education Project            $ 8,000

Through this project, park rangers will continue to work with high school science classes in the classroom. This funding will provide support for supplies and materials for field and classroom programs. (National Environmental Education Foundation Grant)

Tremont Overnight Trips for Gateway Community Schools                                                                                                    $30,000

Culminating 3 day/2 night immersive experience for our two schools in our gateway communities in Gatlinburg, TN and Cherokee, NC. We have progressive Parks as Classrooms programs in both schools coordinated by liaison positions where students have the opportunity to participate in a series of park experiences throughout their school tenure. This residential experience is a critical piece of the overall program. These funds ensure that all students have the opportunity to participate in the program in spite of financial circumstances. (National Park Foundation Donor)

Teacher Workshops                                                                $ 15,000

Funds to support partnership workshops in conjunction with Discover Life in America and the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont. (Glaxco Grant)

Teacher Workshop & Teachers in Park (TN)                      $ 26,200

This grant-funded program includes two teacher workshops for 60 teachers in the summer and fall of 2020 with the teachers agreeing to use park education materials in their classrooms and/or bring their students to the park for field trips during the 2020-2021 school year. Additionally, four “Teacher in Parks” from Title 1 schools with assist with citizen science projects and Junior Ranger programs in the summer of 2020. (Arconic Grant)

Teacher in Park Program (NC)                                               $ 8,000

Funds to support a summer 2020 Teacher in Park position to assist with the high school intern program and summer Junior Ranger programs in NC.

High School Intern Program (TN & NC)                              $ 30,000

Funds to support 16 high school interns working in the park during summer. Some funds will be used for an end of season “graduation” recognition ceremony.

High School Intern Program (Swain County)                        $ 2,000

Funds to support 3 high school interns working in the park during summer. Some funds will be used for an end of season “graduation” recognition ceremony. (Swain County Grant)

Summer Intern Support for MYLES Camp Participants               $ 1,500

Partnership with Montreat College to provide education programs. Funds will be used to help support an intern who will work the MYLES camp participants in the summer.

(Montreat College Grant)

Summer Urban Youth Program (Boys & Girls Club/YELP)                                        $ 31,200

In partnership with Asheville Greenworks and the Boys of Girls Clubs of the Tennessee Valley. This project directly relates to the Education branch goal related to relevancy, diversity, equity and inclusion. Funds provide staffing support, urban youth intern stipends and transportation to the park.

Junior Ranger Program                                                            $ 3,000

Supplies for hands-on Junior Ranger programs

VIP Program Supplies for Resource Education Programs             $ 10,500

Support for volunteers serving at Sugarlands Visitor Center, Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Cades Cove, and Clingmans Dome. These volunteers provide information to thousands of visitors at some of our most highly used visitor contact stations. They also rove busy trails and help manage traffic. These funds will be used on raingear, sun-protection hats, safety gear, and supplies.

Cades Cove Bear Brigade                                                         $ 3,000

The Bear Brigade volunteer program will focus on visitor safety and protection of bears through education and outreach. This program will enable the park to more efficiently manage “bear jams” and help visitors more responsible view wildlife. These funds will be used to purchase uniforms, outreach materials, and safety equipment.

Great Smokies Affrilachian Cultural Experience                $ 20,000

Before this project began, we just had a few small pieces of information but no complete stories. In Year 1, we hired PhD student, Adam McNeil to start doing research. During the summer of 2018, Adam connected with local African American groups in the area around the park but with a special focus in North Carolina. In 2019, Adam is continuing his research and is scheduled to work with local researcher Lin Forney (Waynesville) to conduct some oral histories. We also hosted two community sessions (Haywood County, NC and Blount County, TN) to locate individuals with stories or other information that will be useful for this project. In year 3, the park will continue this work but expand the project by contracting with Latria Graham (GSMA Writer in Residence 2019) to assist in getting more information and developing an interpretative product related to the Turner family in Walker Valley. We also will collaborate with WCU and their team that is doing ground penetrating radar studies in slave cemeteries around Western North Carolina. The intent is to be able to incorporate the African American experience in the Smokies into existing and new exhibits, interpretative and education programs and possibly GSMA and other publications.

Parkwide Wayside and Bulletin Board Updates                  $ 34,000

This project is to update and improve the quality and consistency of information available to visitors in park bulletin boards. These funds will allow us to purchase a plotter so we can make in-house signs. Many of the current signs are out-of-date and in poor shape.

Cades Cove Living History Demonstrations                           $ 5,500

Support for demonstrators who bring life into the historic structures in Cades Cove through music, blacksmithing, weaving, and storytelling.

Sugarlands Visitor Center Special Events                              $ 8,500

Support for several popular events that engage visitors in the history and biological diversity of the Smokies including the Wildflower Pilgrimage, Celebrating Cosby, and Festival of Christmas Past.

Oconaluftee Visitor Center Special Events                           $ 10,000

Support for ongoing Mountain Farm Museum activities throughout the year including blacksmithing, mountain farming, open-hearth cooking, gardening, heirloom apple orchard, and monthly mountain music jams. These funds will also support popular annual events such as Women’s Work Festival, Mountain Life Festival, and Holiday Homecoming.

Experience Your Smokies                                                            $ 500

Support for the Experience Your Smokies program which allows participants to go behind the scenes and truly experience the park through hands-on, real-life resource management projects. Participants learn about park wildlife, aquatic life, native and exotic plants, air quality, management, historic preservation and more.

Digital Media Project (Year 1)                                               $ 97,450

The proposed digital media project will not only replace the existing park film, but will also serve as an outreach tool for the management team, as well as provide digital access through social media, web, streaming outlets, partner sites, and local/regional/national tourism information sites or stations visited both in-park and via remote locations. This 3-year project will produce a series of films: 1) 2-4 minute clip for management outreach, 2) 6-10 minute short for download and external outreach, 3) 20-25 traditional film for in-park visitation.

Parkwide Volunteer-in-Park Program

VIP Recognition Awards Program                                          $ 1,200

Each year over 2,500 individuals contribute over 150,000 hours of volunteer service with VIPs supporting virtually all phases of park operations. These funds allow us the opportunity to provide recognition in to our year-round volunteers in the form of awards such as plaques, belt buckles, and certificates

Artist in Residence Program                                                    $ 6,500

Artists have played important part in the formation and establishment of our park.  Early writers, photographers, painters, and musicians drew inspiration from these mountains and helped translate their purpose as a place of pleasure and preservation.  An Artist-in-Residence supports the opportunity for an artist to live in the park and produce original works of art.  In exchange, the artist agrees to donate a piece of work to the park.

Facility Management

Visitor Amenities

Funding from Friends of the Smokies maintains vault toilets in these popular areas for visitor convenience:

Townsend Visitor Amenities  $4,000

Roaring Fork Visitor Amenities $ 15,600

Cataloochee Visitor Amenities $ 17,500

Cades Cove Fencing                                                                $ 52,600

Over the last several years, we have repaired or replaced the most critical fences around Cades Cove.  We now have 44,000 feet of barbless barbwire fencing, 4,900 feet of locust worm fencing, and 3,200 feet of locust post and stacked rail fencing.  These funds will help support 2 seasonal employees who will maintain these fences along with 13 cemeteries and 9 historic structures.

Trails Forever Rehabilitation of Park Trails                      $ 275,000

These critical funds will continue to support signature trail rehabilitation projects throughout the park. Monies provide for needed supplies and materials and six partial-year trail crew positions, as well as a full-time Trails Forever Volunteer Coordinator position that better enables us to engage volunteers of all ages in hands-on stewardship. In FY20, the crew will complete the second phase of the Trillium Gap Trail rehabilitation and the second phase of the Deep Creek Trail rehabilitation along with additional projects on the Noah Bud Ogle Nature Trail, Oconaluftee River Trail, and replacement of footlogs on Anthony Creek Trail and Pretty Hollow Trail.

Henry Whitehead Cabin Rehabilitation               $6,500                                                                                                    

The Henry Whitehead House, built in two stages beginning in 1881, is an exceptionally well-crafted log cabin representing changing building techniques. The second stage was built of sash sawn logs with a handmade brick chimney, the only example of log construction using sawn timbers remaining in Cades Cove. These funds will be used to make needed repairs to the chimney and flooring.

Palmer Fishing Cabin Stabilization                                       $ 35,800

This cabin represents the early days of tourism in the Cataloochee Valley. The cabin was built in the early 1920s by the Palmers for boarding anglers and tourists. After the park’s establishment, the park used the cabin as administrative office space and as a bunkhouse, but it has never been open to the public. The cabin has not been used in over 20 years and is currently unstable and unsafe for public use.  These funds will enable the park to partner with a group of skilled volunteers to repair and stabilize the structure.

Look Rock Campground Rehabilitation                               $ 76,000

Funding of this project, in conjunction with matching federal monies, will allow the park to complete needed repairs necessary to re-open the 68-site campground along the Foothills Parkway. The project will restore individual picnic and campground sites, rehabilitate the amphitheater, and replace signage.

Greenbrier Ranger Station Rehabilitation                         $ 158,200

The Greenbrier Ranger Station provides office space for Park Rangers as well as seasonal housing. The unit has been in disrepair for several years. Through this project, the park will be able to fully utilize the structure. The rehabilitation includes the replacement of flooring, doors, windows, siding, gutters, plumbing, heat/air, furnishings, and appliances along with the rehabilitation of the bathrooms and kitchen and repainting of the entire unit.

John Oliver Cabin Trail Rehabilitation for Accessibility                $ 175,000

Rehabilitate unpaved, uneven trail to the John Oliver cabin between the designated parking area along the Cades Cove Loop Road and the cabin. The trail is currently 0.3 miles in length. It is expected that the trail would be rehabilitated to have an accessible surface and be at least 8 feet wide to allow for passing of visitors and for wheelchairs in this high use area. (National Park Foundation Donor)

Resource & Visitor Protection

Reduce Fuels and Create Defensible Space on Park Boundary  $10,000

The park conducted several fuel reduction projects along boundary areas from 1997 through 2003 including prescribed burning and mechanical fuel reductions. This project will allow the park to contract with a fire crew to reduce the accumulated fuels and create defensible space adjacent to the park boundary in areas like Ski Mountain. Crews will reduce heavy accumulations of dead wood and brush on the park boundary areas adjacent to homes and rental chalets.

Ginseng Protection Program                                                   $ 5,000

These funds support an annual ginseng marking blitz. Thousands of ginseng roots have been marked through this program over the years. Market demands place heavy pressure on this resource from illegal harvesters who poach for profit.  This is a very cost-effective way to assist in the deterrence and detection of commercial poaching of this resource at risk.

Portable Surveillance Cameras                                               $ 2,000

Cameras provide Rangers with the ability to monitor targeted problem areas on a 24-hours basis, aiding in criminal prosecution. The cameras will be used to target resource violations, destruction and vandalism violations, money box theft cases, as well as auto burglary investigations (the park’s most common felony crime) and other criminal activity.  Effective monitoring of any particular site should use a minimum of three cameras.

Cades Cove Volunteer Bicycle Patrol Support                      $ 2,500

Volunteer-in-Park Bike Patrollers help Resource & Visitor Protection staff manage bike traffic, provide safety information, and assist in managing accident scenes. These funds will help replace safety uniform shirts, bike equipment, and safety gear.

Volunteer Roadside Assistance Support                              $ 12,750

The Smokies recruits a series of retired law enforcement officers and their spouses to patrol Newfound Gap Road and Cades Cove, providing directions and visitor information, responding to disabled vehicles and lock-outs, and assisting with motor vehicle accidents and bear-related traffic jams.  Their presence has substantially freed up the commissioned law enforcement rangers in the park, enabling them to respond more quickly to more serious law enforcement incidents.

Volunteer Storage Shed Replacement                                     $ 7,500

The current storage shed for volunteer supplies for both the parkwide volunteer program and the backcountry trails volunteer program is in disrepair. These funds will be used to purchase a new shed, shelving, and storage organizers to provide safe, efficient access to tools and supplies needed for stewardship activities across the park.

AT Ridgerunner Support                                                      $ 50,000

Funds will continue to support the Ridgerunner program. Ridgerunners perform the following vital tasks on the Appalachian Trail:  check backcountry permits, educate Appalachian Trail hikers regarding park regulations and Leave No Trace ethics, remove a significant amount of abandoned property and trash from the trail and shelters, clean and maintain privies, perform trail maintenance, and submit weekly reports about the state of the trail and shelters.

National Trails Day Support                                                    $ 1,000

A National Trails Day event has been held in the park for 22 years now, in partnership with the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and the Smoky Mountains Hiking Club. Approximately 100 volunteers are expected to participate this year in a project on the Appalachian Trail to foster stewardship and highlight the importance of volunteerism. Funds will pay for supplies and tools for the work project as well as supplies for the picnic gathering held at the end of the workday.

Equestrian Leave No Trace Training Program                         $ 200

Building on a partnership with local equestrians that began in 2012, a group called the Smokies Master Educator’s Alliance (SMEA), lead by the park’s backcountry management specialist, has conducted annual trainings for group volunteers, NPS staff and members of the local horse community to support Leave No Trace awareness and training efforts among equestrians. This annual 2-day course fosters positive relationships with local horse owners and helps alleviate impact issues in the backcountry. Funding covers student materials and training equipment.

Search and Rescue Program Support                                   $ 58,000

These funds support a seasonal ranger to oversee the new preventative search and rescue (PSAR) program. This program also includes a coordinated PSAR volunteer program to provide information at various trailheads where we see a consistent number of SARs.  The ranger and coordinated volunteers will provide valuable information to hikers about trail safety, trail difficulty, and educate hikers on proper preparation before beginning their hike.

 Search and Rescue Safety Equipment and PPE                   $ 10,000

The park has an interdisciplinary basic search and rescue team that relies of employees from all divisions, including seasonal employees, volunteers, and interns. Basic safety equipment and personal protective equipment is needed to keep these rescuers safe as they help others. Items such as life jackets, leather gloves, ear and eye protection, reflective and high-visibility shirts, etc. are needed to sustain this program.

Advanced SAR/Swiftwater Training for Tech Rescue Team                        $7,500

The park’s technical rescue team is an interdisciplinary team that conducts multiple swift water and high angle rescues each year. Team members train together each month, but are generally limited to conditions available in park depending on the time of year. This project would allow the team to travel to the Nantahala Outdoor Center (NOC) or similar training site and earn advanced, official certifications under highly specialized training conditions.

Incident Command System Mobile Trailer                          $ 14,000

These funds will be used to purchase a trailer to serve as a mobile command center allowing rapid response to emergency operations in the field. The trailer will hold necessary equipment for quickly establishing a communications center for multi-day operations including workstations for a core team of command staff to coordinate emergency response.

Joe Kolodski Scholarship Fund                                                $ 7,500

This support will be used to directly benefit advanced leadership training and development for law enforcement staff in honor of Joe Kolodski who was slain in the line of duty in 1998. The award may also be used to purchase advanced rescue or law enforcement equipment. The scholarship, at the discretion of the Chief Ranger, will be recommended by field staff annually.

Update Park Radio System (25th Anniversary Signature Project)                                $ 650,000

These funds will be used to for the much-needed radio-system improvements which will improve both emergency and routine communications parkwide. To date, the park has leveraged $1.5 million in Friends monies with nearly $1 million in matching federal monies towards this project. These funds will complete the park’s request for support for this critical work!

Parkwide Management

Collections Preservations Facility Utilities                            $ 20,000

Provide support for annual utility costs for this facility including water, sewer, and electricity.

Collections Preservation Center Grounds Maintenance                 $ 21,900

Provide grounds maintenance for the Collections Preservation Center

Appalachian Highlands Science Learning Center Operational Maintenance                                                                             $ 31,800

Provide grounds, custodial, fields, and road maintenance at the Appalachian Highlands Science Learning Center at Purchase Knob.

Special Short-term Park Opportunities                                  $ 7,500

These funds will be used to pursue project opportunities that develop during the year that enable the park to better support employee development, care for park resources, or provide recreational opportunities for visitors. Allocation of these funds will be requested and documented through the Annual Work Plan.