Flood Damage at Linville Falls

At the request of the Blue Ridge Parkway Maintenance out of Gillespie Gap, the Crabtree Falls FRIENDS Chapter and the NC High Peaks Trail Association assisted in the cleanup of flood damage at Linville Falls on Monday, June 25.  Eleven members and friends of the chapter worked on this project.  The team had two goals: Remove flood debris from the upper falls overlook area Upright seven stone columns toppled and displaced by the flood The team worked closely with three Parkway employees ... Read more

NPS Announces First Annual Project Parkway for April 21, 2018

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT The National Park Service, Blue Ridge Parkway is excited to introduce Project Parkway, a new annual volunteer event combining efforts parkway-wide! We appreciate the dedication and interest you've demonstrated to the Parkway, so we want to specially invite YOU to join us for a hands-on workday improving the visitor experience at campgrounds and picnic areas. Where? Along the Entire Parkway! We'll be working at each of the campgrounds: Otter Creek, Peaks of Otter, Rocky Knob, Doughton Park, Julian Price, Linville Falls, Crabtree Falls, and Mount Pisgah. When? Saturday, April 21st from ... Read more

Family Reunites at Balsley Cemetery Thanks to FRIENDS Members and Volunteers

Family Returns and Reunites at Balsley Cemetery Thanks to FRIENDS Member A couple months ago, we shared news that dedicated FRIENDS member J.R. Elliott and volunteer Grant Heggie conducted extensive research at the Balsley Family cemetery near the Parkway Visitors Center. After seven years of painstaking research, and with the help of park service officials, volunteers and Friends of the Blue Ridge Parkway, the site has been cleared of brush and plant overgrowth, and on August 19, a rededication ceremony was held at the ... Read more

Say Hello to Youth Outdoors- Our New Future Stewards Initiative

  An essential part of the FRIENDS’ mission is to preserve the national treasure of the Blue Ridge Parkway for future generations. This means engaging young stewards early and opening the door to public lands in a way that is welcoming, inclusive, and lasting. We’ve led efforts to increase the number of Junior Rangers, engage more college students through the Alternative Break program, and get more youth volunteers out and on the Parkway with our chapters. But as the call for more ... Read more

Congratulations to Barbara Duerk, 2017 Cox Conserves Hero!

Congratulations to volunteer Barbara Duerk! This year, dedicated Roanoke Valley Chapter member Barbara Duerk has been named the 2017 Virginia Cox Conserves Hero. Barb is an active volunteer from FRIENDS of the Blue Ridge Parkway Roanoke Valley Chapter and was one three finalists for this award. The winner was decided by public vote. Chair Heidi Ketler won this award in 2015, and was the recipient of a $10,000 award to donate to the nonprofit of her choice! This year, Barbara has decided to do the same and ... Read more

Vote Barbara Duerk for 2017 Cox Conserves Hero!

We need your vote! This year, dedicated Roanoke Valley Chapter member Barbara Duerk has been nominated as a finalist in the Virginia Cox Conserves Heroes recognition program. Barb is an active volunteer from FRIENDS of the Blue Ridge Parkway Roanoke Valley Chapter and is one of three finalists for this award. The winner will be decided by public vote. Chair Heidi Ketler won this award in 2015, and was the recipient of a $10,000 award to donate to the nonprofit of her choice! "Barbara Norris ... Read more

Lost But Not Forgotten…Cemeteries Along the Blue Ridge Parkway

Ever wonder about some of those mysterious cemeteries along the Parkway? The Humpback Chapter will be hosting speaker J.R. Elliott on Wednesday, April 26 at 7:00 – 9:00 PM at the Waynesboro Library to speak about the Balsley Family and their cemetery near the Parkway Visitors Center. Chapter volunteer Grant Heggie has been busy researching lost cemeteries and who is buried in them, and may create a hiking adventure from all this research. He has located seven cemeteries.   J.R. Elliott has also been busy with research. ... Read more

2017 Citizen Science Project: Snail Inventories

Enjoy science? Love the national parks? Want to experience your park through a new lens? Become an NPS Citizen Scientist!     What is a Citizen Scientist? Citizen Science programs are developed to offer volunteers the opportunity to work in the parks they love. The benefit of Citizen Science programs is a group of trained volunteers who work with park staff to reach a common goal; understanding the different types of species a park has. Participation as a citizen scientist helps parks to conduct research ... Read more

Volunteers Needed for the Blue Ridge Marathon, April 22

  Did you know that FRIENDS of the Blue Ridge Parkway was the very first non-profit to team with the Blue Ridge Marathon? This race is the ONLY marathon that runs along the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway, and proceeds from this non-profit event benefit the parkway and a dozen local charities every year. Volunteering for the Blue Ridge Marathon on Saturday, April 22, will help fund our Roanoke Chapter's summertime Music on the Mountain traditional music series. We just need a few hours ... Read more

National Park Service Recognizes FRIENDS Volunteers

We here at FRIENDS of the Blue Ridge Parkway are so excited to announce the accomplishments of our Chapters of volunteers. We recognize their efforts every day, and visitors do too when they stop and see a cleared overlook, or when they are able to participate in a cultural event along the Parkway. In October a luncheon was held in Asheville, North Carolina where of our several volunteers’ and chapters’ hard work was recognized by our office, their peers, and by ... Read more
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