National Park Service

Fat Bear Week 2019 officially ended Tuesday night. And the winner is ...

No. 435, or if you prefer a name, Holly.

Fat Bear Week has been an annual event for the past five years in Katmai National Park and Preserve in southwestern Alaska. The idea is to publicize and celebrate the process of bears eating as much as they can to build up crucial fat reserves in advance of winter hibernation.

www.nps.gov / National Park Service

A National Park Service report released Sunday, details the economic benefits to Southern West Virginia last year. According to the report, tourism to the region’s national parks helped spur the economy by almost $70 million.

David Mercer / Associated Press

A university in West Virginia has been fined $4,999 for failing to complete inventories of American Indian remains and artifacts in its possession.

The U.S. Department of the Interior notified Marshall University President Jerome Gilbert of the fine in a letter this week.

Jessica Lilly

For communities in the rugged Appalachian Mountains - when it rains hard, water doesn't have anywhere to go but straight down into the hollers. Floods - especially flash floods - are simply a way of life. In fact, our region has experienced some of the largest measured flash flood events in the world.

e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia

The Wheeling Suspension Bridge over the Ohio River reopened to the public on July 28, 1860. The bridge had originally opened to much fanfare in 1849. At the time, it was the longest clear span in the world and helped usher in an era of great American bridge building.

Most significantly for the northern panhandle, the bridge boosted Wheeling’s economic fortunes. Three major transportation routes converged in Wheeling. In addition to the heavily traveled Ohio River and Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, the bridge now extended the National Road westward into Ohio.

Its 1,700-foot arch made it the longest single-span arch bridge in the world.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / New River Gorge, Fayette County, Fayette Station Road

The bridge that provides the only road access to the Camp Brookside area of New River Gorge National River in West Virginia has been closed for repairs.

The National Park Service says the shutdown began Thursday and is expected to last five weeks.

Grandview
Mackensen / Wikimedia Commons

The National Park Service is looking for volunteers to staff the small visitor center this summer in the Grandview area of the New River Gorge National River.

The Park Service says in a news release that volunteers can either work a full shift per week for the entire summer or commit to fewer hours. Most work is performed indoors.

Its 1,700-foot arch made it the longest single-span arch bridge in the world.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / New River Gorge, Fayette County, Fayette Station Road

The state’s three national parks in southern West Virginia saw more than one million visitors last year, resulting in a bump to the economies of the surrounding cities and towns. 

Its 1,700-foot arch made it the longest single-span arch bridge in the world.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / New River Gorge, Fayette County, Fayette Station Road

The National Park Service is looking for some local teachers to work with staff at New River Gorge National River to rework educational programming offered at the park for area schools.

The park is holding a four-day workshop in June and will pay an honorarium of $800 to each of 12 teachers attending. The park said in a news release that teachers from all primary and secondary grades can apply at https://www.nps.gov/neri/planyourvisit/teacher-ranger-teacher-program.htm . The deadline is April 10, and the workshop is scheduled for June 26 to 29.

National Parks Service

The National Park Service is looking for those responsible for spray painting graffiti along the New River Gorge National River in southern West Virginia.

Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

This year marks the Centennial Celebration of the National Park Service – 100 years since the system was created. But 2016 is also special for another reason – it marks the release of a new quarter honoring one of West Virginia's best known National Parks.

Hundreds of people gathered in Harpers Ferry for the official launch of the America the Beautiful Quarters Program honoring Harpers Ferry National Historical Park.

Its 1,700-foot arch made it the longest single-span arch bridge in the world.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / New River Gorge, Fayette County, Fayette Station Road

The National Park Service says southern West Virginia's three national parks contributed more than $64 million in benefits to the local economy in 2015.

Economists with the National Park Service and the U.S. Geological Survey analyzed visitor spending at parks across the nation, including the New River Gorge National River, Bluestone National Scenic River and Gauley River National Recreation Area.

Office of the Governor

Forty-two West Virginia counties are receiving state grants for historic preservation.

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin announced the grants yesterday. He says they will help enhance access to public records and maintain historic sites around the state.

Funding for the program comes from filing fees collected by county clerks.

Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

New River Gorge National River is offering a 100-mile hiking challenge to celebrate the National Park Service's centennial.

To complete the challenge, visitors must hike at least 100 miles on trails in New River Gorge National River and Bluestone National Scenic River in 2016.

Erin Board / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A repair project has temporarily shut off access to the main overlook at Grandview.

The National Park Service says in a news release that the overlook's main walkway is being closed for repairs, effective immediately. The closure is expected to last for approximately the next three weeks.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers / recreation.gov

Federal land and water conservation fund grants are heading to 11 community outdoor projects across West Virginia.

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin says the funding totaling nearly $585,000 will leverage approximately $1.2 million in federal, local and private funds, benefiting projects that will be enjoyed by a quarter million state residents.

Its 1,700-foot arch made it the longest single-span arch bridge in the world.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / New River Gorge, Fayette County, Fayette Station Road

The National Park Service is holding a youth art contest for students in Fayette, Nicholas, Raleigh and Summers counties.

The Youth Arts in the Parks 2016 Appalachian Spring Wildflower Art Contest is open to K-12 students in the four counties.

Theatre West Virginia play
Theatre West Virginia Facebook

Hundreds of students in southern West Virginia will see a performance at Theatre West Virginia as part of a federal government campaign to get children to enjoy the outdoors.

The National Park Service says nearly 1,100 fourth graders from Fayette, Nicholas, Raleigh and Summers counties are signed up to attend the live show at the Cliffside Amphitheatre in Grandview on Wednesday.

Cannons on Bolivar Heights, Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The National Park Service says a Civil War battlefield near Shepherdstown would make a suitable addition to the Antietam National Battlefield in neighboring Maryland.

Its 1,700-foot arch made it the longest single-span arch bridge in the world.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / New River Gorge, Fayette County, Fayette Station Road

A report from the National Park Service says three parks in southern West Virginia brought tens of millions of dollars into the surrounding communities, supporting hundreds of jobs.

The National Park Service says the New River Gorge National River, Bluestone National Scenic River and Gauley River National Recreation Area brought 1,280,604 visitors into southern West Virginia last year.

Wikimedia Commons

Two Civil War battlefields in Maryland are ringing bells to mark the 150th anniversary of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee's surrender.
 
The Antietam National Battlefield near Sharpsburg and the Monocacy National Battlefield near Frederick are ringing bells for four minutes Thursday starting at 3:15 p.m. The four minutes symbolize the four years of the war.

http://parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?projectID=57693

The National Park Service plans to update the fire management plan for three parks in Southern West Virginia.

The plan would cover New River Gorge National River, Gauley River National Recreation Area, and Bluestone National Scenic River.

Clindberg / wikimedia Commons

The National Park Service is hoping to turn a renovated Camp Brookside in Brooks in to a future education institute.

The camp was originally built in the 1940s as a summer camp for children of Electro Metallurgical Company workers in Alloy. It was bought by the National Park Service in 1993.

Officials received funding in 2012 to restore the mess hall, seven cabins and the caretaker's residence. Those restorations are nearing completion.

Magnus Manske / wikimedia Commons

The National Park Service has approved a 120-acre expansion of Charleston's East End Historic District.

City planners announced the park service's decision Wednesday. The boundary expansion became effective Dec. 16.

A 2014 consultant's survey found that more than 400 structures in the expanded area contribute to the neighborhood's historic nature.

Property owners in the district's expanded area will be eligible for tax credits for rehabilitation of historic properties.

The original district was created in 1978.

Lori Jo Jamieson / Flickr

Several West Virginia historic sites including the Colonial cabin that was an off-the-grid oasis for a Manhattan magazine illustrator and his wife have been named to the National Register of Historic Places.

Civil War cannon at Harpers Ferry
Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

This week is the last chance to make a public comment about a boundary adjustment for the Shepherdstown Battlefield. The National Park Service is looking for thoughts and opinions on whether the battlefield should be part of the park system. If so, will it be an addition to Harpers Ferry National Historical Park or Antietam National Battlefield?

Cannons on Bolivar Heights, Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Four of America’s Civil War battlefields will receive grants to help preserve their land.

www.nps.gov / National Park Service

The National Park Service is prohibiting the use of unmanned aircrafts on the Appalachian National Scenic Trail grounds.

  The National Park Service has completed a study of the Shepherdstown Battlefield and related resources.

Congress ordered the study to determine whether the Civil War battlefield should be added to the national park system. It could become an addition to either Harpers Ferry National Historical Park or Antietam National Battlefield in Maryland.

Tammy Stidham with the park service tells The Journal that the study looked at historical significance, natural resources and economic uses.

National Park Service

A new National Park Service report shows that visitors to national park areas in southern West Virginia spent $51 million in nearby communities in 2013.

The report says a little more than 1,243,000 people from around the world visited the New River Gorge National River, the Bluestone National Scenic River, and the Gauley River National Recreation Area in 2013.

In a release today NPS Superintendent Trish Kicklighter said that in addition to providing visitors remarkable experiences in America's outdoors, National Park  Tourism is a significant driver in the national economy.

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