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Grand Canyon Launches Volunteer "Nest Watch" Program
Here's your opportunity to observe the nesting behavior of endangered California condors, and see plenty of sunsets over the Grand Canyon! Starting this April, visitors to the Grand Canyon can participate in a special volunteer program, called "Nest Watch," sponsored by the Grand Canyon National Park Foundation.
Condor 23 perched on South Rim railing In 1987, California condors were on the brink of extinction with a total of just 27 birds in existence. Following a major recovery and captive-breeding program, the number of free-flying condors has risen to 81, with 36 of the birds living in Arizona. Nearly all of the Arizona condors spend time in the Grand Canyon National Park, especially from spring through fall. Last year, there was great excitement when two pairs of condors were discovered nesting in remote caves below the South Rim. Although both pairs produced eggs, the nests ultimately failed, most likely due to the condors' inexperience. However, everyone is optimistic that this year, the condors will again breed successfully and hatch a healthy chick!

Become a Nest Watch Volunteer!
Currently, there are two active nests at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. With support from the Grand Canyon National Park Foundation, the park is now able to provide intensive monitoring and management of condors within its boundaries. Foundation funding also includes support for "Nest Watch," an exciting interpretive volunteer program which gives park visitors the chance to observe and actively monitor condors in the canyon.

"Nest Watch" field work entails long hours of spotting scope observation, some telemetry work, and coordination with project biologists and other nest watchers. The park is primarily looking for people willing to have some sort of loose schedule (one or two days every week, or every other week). There will be some equipment provided, but you may be asked to provide your own binoculars and/or spotting scope. Join this exciting volunteer program at Grand Canyon!

  • Where: South Rim of the Grand Canyon

  • When: Positions available from April through September or October, 2003

  • Contact: Marlin Smith @ the Wildlife Office in Grand Canyon (928- 638-7648)
    or the Grand Canyon National Park Foundation (928-774-1760).
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Arizona Republic/12 News awards $15,000 for "Dynamic Earth" program at Grand Canyon
The Arizona Republic/12 News has awarded the Grand Canyon National Park Foundation $15,000 to support the park's Dynamic Earth program for elementary school students in Arizona. The funding represents a portion of the Arizona Republic/12 News "Season for Sharing Campaign" pledge of $100,000 to bring underprivileged schoolchildren to the Grand Canyon to learn about this incredible place situated right here in their home state. For many of these children, Dynamic Earth provides their first -- and perhaps only -- opportunity to visit the Grand Canyon and explore its many wonders.

The Dynamic Earth program is a comprehensive, interactive learning experience for students and their teachers. Part of the program involves teacher workshops at the park to give teachers more in-depth information about Grand Canyon and creative ideas to prepare their students for their Grand Canyon fieldtrip. When the students come to the Grand Canyon, they engage in a variety of fun, hands-on activities led by park rangers and learn about geologic time, the dynamic forces of nature, the formation of the canyon, canyon wildlife, and the importance of environmental conservation.

The Grand Canyon is hailed as one of the world's most beautiful and exciting outdoor classrooms. Thanks to the Arizona Republic/12 News, more youngsters throughout the state now have a deeper understanding and appreciation of why Grand Canyon National Park is so special to so many people.

Click HERE to learn more about the Dynamic Earth program at Grand Canyon.

The Season for Sharing
Bob Newtson, Foundation Director of Corporate & Foundation Relations, receives a $15,000 check from The Arizona Republic and 12 News "Season for Sharing" campaign. The "Season for Sharing" grant supports environmental education programs for over 4,000 Arizona schoolchildren (grades 4-6) at Grand Canyon National Park. Because of the generosity of the "Season for Sharing" campaign, these students are provided on-site learning opportunities -- to better understand the geological history of the Canyon, and the multiple distinct ecosystems contained within the Park.

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Grand Canyon Foundation Wins National Accessibility Award for Greenway
(Grand Canyon, AZ) - In an award ceremony held at Grand Canyon National Park on 12/10/02, Superintendent Joseph F. Alston presented, on behalf of the Department of the Interior, National Park Service the 2002 National Accessibility Leadership Award to the Grand Canyon National Park Foundation, for their outstanding leadership in ensuring high accessibility standards for the Grand Canyon National Park Greenway project. When completed the Greenway could provide as many as 73 miles of new hiking and biking trails on the South and North Rims of Grand Canyon National Park, and will be the longest wheelchair accessible trail in the National Park System. Designed to improve the visitor experience by offering a wider range of transit options into and around the park, the Greenway provides greater opportunities for visitors on foot, by bicycle or in a wheelchair to connect with the canyon.
Award Presentation
Superintendent Joe Alston presents the accessibility leadership     award to Deborah Tuck, President of the GCNP Foundation
"This award acknowledges the efforts of Deborah Tuck, President of the Grand Canyon National Park Foundation, and her ability to interest private donors like the Pulliam Charitable Trust, the Dr. Scholl Foundation, the Haiman Foundation, and American Airlines, as well as many individual contributors," stated Superintendent Alston. "We congratulate the Foundation and its many partners - this unique effort is an extraordinary example of what public/private partnerships can do to help the Park Service expand the levels of opportunity for all visitors, we encourage them to continue their efforts in equal access for everyone."
Many of the park's visitor facilities are historic and were built before accessibility standards were developed. The Grand Canyon Greenway Development Plan was completed in 1997 by the Grand Canyon National Park Foundation, the National Park Service, and the Greenway Collaborative - a volunteer group of Greenway planners and designers specially formed to assist with this project. Designed for full accessibility, the trails will have an average width of 12 feet and be surfaced and graded to offer ease of movement for individuals using wheelchairs. The first four miles, completed in 2002, have a maximum slope of five percent and rest areas every 30 feet in places where the slope is at or near five percent. The earliest sections of the Greenway are the Grand Canyon Village Trail segments from Yavapai Point to Pipe Creek Vista on Desert View Drive and from Canyon View Information Plaza, the park's new visitor orientation and transportation center, to Grand Canyon Village.

The NPS initiated the National Accessibility Awards in the fall of 1998 to recognize outstanding accomplishments that result in greater opportunities with disabilities within the NPS. The Grand Canyon National Park Foundation was among six national winners that were selected by a national review panel. Award categories included Sustained Park Achievement; Programmatic Achievement; Accessibility Leadership; Volunteer Achievement; Design Achievement (Architectural); and Design Achievement (exhibits and Waysides). The national award winners will receive a Director's Award plaque and a letter from the Director outlining their accomplishments. The 2002 award winners along with photographs of their achievements are available on the NPS internet web page at www.nps.gov/access.

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