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Reader Participation Day: What If You Could Wave a Magic Wand?


As any wizard will tell you, a wand is an essential tool for channeling magical powers.  Alas; the  light-up wands that Harry Potter fans buy for about 40 bucks make fine collectibles, but they're duds. Suppose, however, that you were able to get your hands on the real thing. And suppose the user's manual specified that you could use it only once for the express purpose of helping America's national parks. What would you cause to happen for the benefit of the National Park System with that one wave of your magic wand?  


Buzby's Genreral Store in Chatsworth, NJ is for sale.  It is on the registry of nationally historic places - built in 1865.  It lies in the heart of the Pinelands National Reserve.  I would buy it and turn it into the first Visitor's Center in the Reserve.

Interesting choice, Lawrence, but wouldn't you want to first make the Pinelands a national park? The 1.16 million-acre Pinelands National Reserve (Pine Barrens) in southern New Jersey is an Affiliated Area, not a National Park System unit.

My first thought is to do something for the rangers. I think "a big pot of money" is a cheat on the magic wand question, so I'm not doubling their salaries, as much as I'd like to.
I think I'll create a National Park Ranger Appreciation Day, a holiday to be celebrated nationwide each year by an appreciative citizenry that uses the occasion to celebrate all the hard work the rangers do. And maybe the doubled salaries will then flow out of that somehow. (Hey, a girl can dream, can't she?)

More national parks in my home state of Oregon: Mt. Hood/Columbia Gorge, Hells Canyon/Wallowa Mtns, Steens Mtn, and Owyhee Canyonlands would all be fine national parks.

I'd support a lot of the proposed projects here in California, like the San Gabriel Mountains National Recreation Area, the Sand to Snow National Park, etc. There's a lot of land left to protect out here, and the pressures are just increasing rapidly.

A broader brush :) but may the wand touch and transform our leaders (inside and out of NPS) AND citizens, rely on true wisdom in their decisions.  That should cover it, I believe.  Lot at stake.

Restore Hetch Hetchy Valley and get rid of that bathtub ring.

Of course this would be something complex, including magically creating agreements for water rights for the City and County of San Francisco at Lake Don Pedro. But the magic wand would be all powerful, right?

I'd remove the private car from Yosemite Valley and the Cades Cove Loop in the Smokies.

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