Six months after a two-day conference on the future of America's national parks, a drive continues to encouarge more groups with ties to the parks to endorse a statement of principles that touches on such diverse topics as economics, natural resource protection, and connecting communities to the parks.
In Moab, Utah, a gritty town that mines the tourism industry spawned in part by nearby Arches and Canyonlands national parks, the Friends of Arches and Canyonlands Parks is working to connect the region's youth with the parks.
Thirteen hours at America's Summit on National Parks raised questions about video games as an enticement, in-park history lessons, and how the economy affects affection for the national parks.
A two-day conference designed to explore the future of national parks in America draws a wide range of speakers, from the obvious -- National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis -- to the not-quite-so-obvious -- Alan Latourelle, the chief executive officer of Parks Canada.
On the eve of America's Summit on National Parks, it's timely to recall Edward Abbey's belief that "(T)he chief reason so many people are fleeing the cities at every opportunity to go tramping, canoeing, skiing into the wilds is that wilderness offers a taste of adventure, a chance for the rediscovery of our ancient, preagricultural, preindustrial freedom."