Volunteers spruce up the Upper Delaware for its centennial

01 Oct 2015 | 02:12

BEACH LAKE — Anya Shaunessy, 2015 graduate from Bucknell University, will help prepare Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River for the National Park Service’s 100 anniversary in 2016. She is one of 70 energetic, young Centennial Volunteer Ambassador interns recently selected to spend the next year connecting local communities to National Parks through volunteer opportunities, starting with the park service's National Public Lands Day event on Sept. 26.

Anya has been hard at work, planning a park-wide volunteer project for the day-long event. It's a collaboration between park rangers and volunteers, to complete four projects: trail maintenance on the Tusten Mountain trail, planting a pollinator garden, doing repairs on the historic Roebling Bride, and doing a river clean-up event on the Delaware River. The projects will be completed by members of St. Mary’s Youth Group, the Delaware Valley Job Corps, the Master Gardeners of Wayne County, National Canoe Safety Patrol, the Student Conservation Association crew from Delaware Water Gap National Recreational Area, and members of the local community.

“The National Park Service’s Centennial celebration will focus as much on our future as on our past,” said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. “We are excited that young people, including our Centennial Volunteer Ambassadors, are stepping up as the next generation of conservation leaders. I know this opportunity will enable them to form lasting connections to national parks and the natural world. I also know that their contagious passion will inspire many others to do the same.”

The Volunteer Ambassador Program is a partnership between the National Park Service and the Student Conservation Association and supports the Department of the Interior’s Play, Learn, Serve, Work Youth Initiative to expand educational, volunteer, and career opportunities for millions of youth and veterans on the nation’s public lands.

“I cannot imagine a more fulfilling way to spend my first year out of college, than to be working with the National Park Service in the year leading up to the Centennial," said Anhya. :I have had the privilege of meeting some of this park’s most dedicated veteran volunteers, as well as welcoming many fresh faces. Having volunteered at Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River in high school, I never would have dreamed I would someday be working here as a Centennial Volunteer Ambassador.”

To learn more about the efforts of the Centennial Volunteer Ambassadors visit nps100sca.wordpress.com.

For more information call 570-685-4871 or visit nps.gov/upde.