FRIENDS Annual Fundraiser

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Join us Friday, November 1st at the 
  Brugh Tavern at Explore Park in Roanoke for a 1940s  Night on the Parkway!

  • Dinner and a cash bar featuring Twin Creeks Brewery
  • Swing music by Keenan McKenzie and the Rifters
  • 1940's cars on display with photo ops
  • Silent auction filled with gift certificates to Parkway experiences
  • Dressing for the theme of 1940's is encouraged but not required. Otherwise, attire is business casual.


Tickets: $60 per person or $100 for two

To purchase visit: 
or call 540.772.2992

Proceeds benefit FRIENDS  and our projects 
along the Parkway.
Turn your volunteer hours into 
additional funding for the Parkway!

Please submit any volunteer hours you have for 
October 1, 2018 thru September 30, 2019  by October 15, 2019

This data will be used to convert volunteer hours into funding for Parkway programs.

News from the Parkway
Interesting Sightingssightings
What caused this? 
This group of tree trunks stand out each time the FRIENDS Fisher Peak Chapter volunteers pass them doing trail maintenance on the High Meadows Trail they built and adopted some years ago. 
They suspect when these trees were still quite young, a larger tree came down on top of them. Their flexibility as saplings allowed the trunks to bend instead of break.
Over time, each trunk angled back towards sunlight and continued to mature.  And over time, the fallen tree decomposed into soil, leaving the curved tree trunks as we see them today.

Have you ever seen the Rock Man?

Next time you visit Rocky Knob make sure you stop and say hello to the Rock Man. FRIENDS Rocky Knob Chapter volunteer, Rob Neukirch shared this photo of Rock Man so you can recognize him.  
Rock Man  lives behind the Rocky Knob Visitor's Center. Simply follow the blue blazes.  There is also a great rock chimney standing majestically just down the trail from Rock Man.

Chapter News Briefschapterbriefs
Rocky Knob Chapter

It's not unusual to find FRIENDS volunteer and Rocky Knob Chapter Chair, Libby Wilcox out on the Parkway in her area cleaning and painting signs with a few FRIENDS. Her pickup truck carries all the necessary supplies so she can stop  anytime she sees a need. This summer she took her passion down the Parkway. Look at the before and after pictures from her work around Gillespie Gap.

Before                                                                After                


Fisher Peak Chapter

Another busy month! The Fisher Peak Chapter:
  • Performed general trail maintenance on the 2 trails at the Music Center the chapter has adopted.
  • Pulled weeds in the natural areas at the Music Center and collected, sorted and transferred Music Center recyclables to Galax.
  • Retrieved the wildlife camera (on loan from the Park Service) from one location and deployed it again at a new location. This time we captured photos of typical wildlife such as deer, opossum, and squirrels.
  • Provided music demonstrations at the Music Center to a total of 278 visitors from a variety of states and countries.
  • Helped cover the Music Center information desk.
Wildlife Camera Capture

High Country Chapter

The FRIENDS High Country Chapter had a great workday at Moses Cone Memorial Park at the end of August. The volunteers assisted with trail maintenance. They had a safety meeting and then got to work! Throughout the day, they met many visitors who thanked them for their efforts including one couple from Ashville,NC who specifically mentioned the improvements they had made over the past couple years! What a rewarding experience!

Safety Meeting to Start the Day
FRIENDS Doing Trail Maintenance


Asheville Chapter

Graffiti is a constant battle on the Parkway.  FRIENDS from the Asheville Chapter  monitor the "high target" areas for new "art" and work to get it removed.  Ross Akin  and  Nancy Midgette  worked with an energetic group from the  Asheville School  to tackle graffiti on the bridge down by the French Broad River one Saturday morning in late August. They covered a lot of ground--and graffiti--in two hours!

Safety First: Water Drainage Toolssafety

Many of our trail and overlook adopters will probably be cleaning out water drainages as we go into the fall season.  Due to the sharpness and weight of some digging tools and the length of the handles, here are some recommended safety practices:
  1. Wear heavy-duty boots when digging.  Steel-toed boots are even better.
  2. Ensure your feet are NOT in the moving path of the tool.  In other words, if you are straddling your water drainage, keep your feet well to each side as you dig.
  3. Do NOT lift your tool above the shoulder level.
  4. Be sure no other volunteers are standing within striking distance while working.
  5. Stop working when others are passing by your work area.
  6. Check to be sure the digging part of each tool is securely attached to the handle and that the handle is not cracked or split.
  7. While hauling tools to each work location, do NOT carry them on your shoulder; instead, allow them to hang by your side.  Also, leave space (double the length of the handle) between volunteers as you walk.
  8. Take plenty of water and plenty of rest breaks.  You can always return on a later date to complete the task if you find yourself tiring out.

Volunteers by the Numbersvolnumbers
The National Park Service uses volunteer numbers to gain funding for the following year and the more hours volunteers report the more funding the NPS receives! 

Let's make this a record breaking year!
Volunteer Incentive Program
FRIENDS has started a volunteer incentive program to recognize the outstanding work our volunteers do for the love of the Parkway. Read more about it in the volunteer manual. Click the button below:
We'll keep the tallies below current each month so we can watch the numbers grow! 
 Volunteers with 50 + Hours Logged in 2019
We congratulate the following volunteers :

Bill Abbuehl Steve Estep Charles Rose
Ross Akin
 Sandy Gallagher
Cary Simms
Aubrey Arrington
Harlan Goodreau
McFerrin Smith
Lorene Becker
Reginald Hassler Curtis Stiff
Billie Bryant 
Paul Kitchen
Tom Tolle
Skip Capone
Pete Lascell
 Libby Wilcox 
Julie Carpenter
David Lennox 
Ken Carpenter
Rusty Mansel
Your name next?
Drew Daniels
Nancy Midgette
Mike Davis
Tanya Poole
Sharon Estep
Joe Robinson
Keep reporting your hours!
Volunteer Hours by Group
October 2018 - August 2019 (NPS Fiscal Year)
Have you been out on the Parkway working? 
Do you have hours to report?  
  • Email them to:
  • Mail them to: PO Box 20986, Roanoke, VA 24018
  • Or click the button below to send them through the Google form
NOTE: If you are part of a chapter, check with your chapter chair about how to enter your hours. They may be sending them in for you. 

Job Opening jobopening

Looking for a seasonal paid position 
on the Parkway? Check out this opportunity!

America's National Parks, a not-for-profit partner of the National Park Service, is seeking a Store Lead Associate with a strong work ethic to support our retail store at the Blue Ridge Parkway Doughton Park Visitor Center, located near Laurel Springs, North Carolina.
This is an hourly; seasonal position from mid-September to November 3 rd , working eight hours a day, three to five days a week and will need to be able to work weekends and holidays.
The Store Lead Associate will provide an exceptional visitor experience through friendly and courteous customer engagement by communicating current sales offers and exhibiting exceptional customer service and selling techniques. The Store Lead Associate will also assign job tasks to store associates, monitor work performance and provide regular feedback to staff and management on performance observations. The Store Lead Associate is also responsible for opening and closing the store independently.
America's National Parks stores are part of a private non-profit organization created in 1947 to provide educational products, services and experiences in over 170 national parks visitor centers including fourteen sites along the Blue Ridge Parkway. Our park stores offer books, toys, music, apparel, art, collectibles and other unique items that connect visitors to Parkway themes of regional recreation, nature and human history. Our employees find great satisfaction in their opportunities to affect visitors' park experiences - possibly even their lives - by sharing products that lead folks to discover new interests or deeper appreciation for their national parks.  Sales proceeds also create an annual cash donation to support park programs.

Volunteers Needed

Job Task
Contact Info
May 14
General tasks as needed
Peaks of Otter Thursdays 9am to Noon Work at Johnson Farm

"Volunteers don't necessarily have the time; they just have the heart." 
--Elizabeth Andrew

Upcoming Events
Don't forget to enjoy a fun day on the Parkway. The music concerts still are happening at Roanoke Mountain, Mabry Mill and the Blue Ridge Music Center. Not to mention all the interpretive programs happening at Parkway locations.

For a full listing of Parkway events visit the  Parkway Events Calendar or the
Are you a member of FRIENDS?
As a FRIENDS  volunteer , you give your  TIME  for the love of the park! 

But have you ever wondered how the vistas are restored or the demonstration gardens are funded? 

Our  members support the work of NPS staff and FRIENDS volunteers. Every year we create a list of funding requests that we hope to fulfill. Gifts from our annual members make that happen. 

For $40 a year you can become a member of FRIENDS and help the park and other volunteers!

Volunteer Resources
Click the links below to quickly access resources:

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