Trash and Beyond!

Garbage at Town Creek

Garbage at Town Creek

Candee and I are fairly well-involved in volunteering in the C&O Canal NHP.  We have both been level walkers (the oldest volunteer group in the park) with the C&O Canal Association for four years, and we recently joined the Canal Steward Program and help out at the Town Creek Aqueduct.  I’ve only been doing that for a couple of months and have  put in a grand total of three hours at the aqueduct, so mentioning that one is still kind of embarrassing, but it’s a work in progress.  In all, that’s a solid effort, and volunteer groups in national parks across the country are an enormous asset to the National Park Service.  But let’s stick with a few facts and figures in regard to the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal…

All along the 184.5 miles of the C&O, there are 34 volunteer groups performing duties that are far too numerous to mention.  However, just to toss out a few ideas, there are librarians, interpreters, docents, weed warriors, trash collectors, etc.  I hope the NPS doesn’t mind me borrowing some stats from the blurb on the volunteer calendar, but 4,789 people contributed a combined 72,322 hours during FY 2012, making the C&O’s volunteer program one of the largest in the nation.  That’s staggering!  The end result of this work plus the outstanding effort of the park’s paid staff (rangers and maintenance) help to make the C&O a great destination for anyone interested in the perfect venue for a hike or bike ride.


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