Looking ahead to the Park
Centennial celebration...WITH AUDIO
David Hallac, superintendent of the National Park
Service's Outer Banks Group, was the guest again on Dec. 20 on "To the
Point," the Radio Hatteras interview show hosted by Island Free Press
editor Irene Nolan.
This interview is the second part of Hallac's report to the people on
his first year as superintendent, and in this interview, he talks about
the challenges of managing the three park units that comprise the
group, including visitation, activities, cultural and natural
resources, physical facilities, and employees.
In this interview, he is joined by Lynne Belanich, who is the Bodie
Island district ranger and also the Centennial coordinator for the
Outer Banks Group of parks.
Belanich coordinates the work of Park Service staff members from many
different disciplines -- law enforcement, natural resources,
maintenance, and interpretation -- as they plan for the 100th
anniversary celebration of the founding of the National Park Service on
Aug. 25, 2016.
Hallac notes that the Outer Banks Group is comprised of three parks of
There's the Wright Brothers National Memorial, where the first powered
flight took place. There's the Lost Colony National Historic Site,
where the first English colony in North American was established.
And, finally, there's the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, the nation's
first national seashore.
He talks about the challenges of managing the three parks that cover
many fewer acres yet have visitation that rivals some of the big iconic
western parks, including Yellowstone, where Hallac managed
natural resources before he came to the Outer Banks.
The Outer Banks Group has about 2.8 million visits to its three parks
that cover 30,000 acres. Yellowstone, he said, hosts about 3 million to
3.5 million visits to the park, which covers about 2.2 million acres.
All three parks will be involved in next year's Centennial celebration,
The overall Centennial goal," Belanich says, "is to connect
with and create the next generation of park visitors, supporters, and
To reach that goal, she notes, the director of the National Park
Service, Jonathan Jarvis, has issued a "call to action" for the
Centennial year. The call to action points are broken into four
categories --- connecting people to parks, advancing the NPS education
mission, preserving America's special places, and enhancing
professional and organizational excellence.
There are 39 "calls to action" listed and each park can pick and choose
which ones its will pursue with its communities during 2016 and beyond.
The plans for the Outer Banks Group involve such things as a
naturalization ceremony for new U.S. citizens at the Wright Brothers
National Memorial, an International Dark Sky designation for the
seashore, and also a water trails project that will help visitors
explore the soundside of the seashore.
Belanich directs folks who want to know more about the Centennial or to
volunteer to plan and/or be part of it, to check out the website, http://www.nps.gov/calltoaction/.
She says the "call to action" document spells out each of the 39
"calls" and that the site, in general, "has some great resources on how
the community can get involved."
Belanich also recommends the website,
https://everykidinapark.gov/, which is focused on the next generation
and specifically offers fourth graders free visits to national parks.
On this site, youngsters can plan a trip to a park and then print a
free pass. There's also information for parents and educators on
using the site.
Finally, she directs us to http://findyourpark.com/, a website where
people can find their own "special" park and share the story of why
it's so special to them. There's also information on this site about
Centennial events and planning your visit to a park.
If you have questions about the Centennial or want to volunteer to work
on any of its events or activities, you can send an e-mail to the park
by going to the website,
http://www.nps.gov/caha/index.htm. Click on the "contact us" icon
on the left hand side of the page.
"To the Point" airs on the island's community radio station, FM 101.5,
at 5 p.m. on the first and third Sunday of each month. It is
repeated on the second and fourth Sunday. Those who don't live on
Hatteras can listen to the show on Sundays through live streaming at www.radiohatteras.org.
Scroll down and click on the appropriate "To the Point" logo to listen
to the audio of the interview.
MORE ABOUT RADIO HATTERAS
Radio Hatteras is our community, non-profit radio station and depends
on grants, memberships, and underwriting.
It broadcasts around the clock with news -- including such things as
surfing and fishing reports -- community announcements, music, and
special programs. The station is also now streamed live. To listen, go
Our community radio station also needs your support, and you can give
that by purchasing a membership or by underwriting the station if you
are a business or another community non-profit.
Radio Hatteras memberships are $50 for a family, $25 for an individual
and $10 for a student. Mail memberships and other contributions to
Radio Hatteras, P.O. Box 339, Frisco, NC 27936.
E-mail [email protected]
or call (252) 995-6000 for information about underwriting opportunities.