Friends of Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Friends of Great Smoky Mountains National Park Newsletter
April 18, 2012
In This Issue
2012 Trails Forever Project
Catching Poachers
Out with the Old & In with the Older
It IS Easy Being Green
See you at Little River Trading Co.

I was digging around on the Park's website yesterday to find articles, podcasts, and videos that illustrate how membership, event participation and sponsorships, memorial gifts, and planned gifts make a true impact in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Our 2012 Needs List  is full of great projects that improve Great Smoky Mountains National Park because of your support.

The Park's website does a great job of communicating how Friends' support matters; read some examples below!  Then feel good knowing that you can contribute to enriching Great Smoky Mountains National Park through these programs and many more that will make up the $1 million+ that Friends of the Smokies will contribute to the park this year.

Holly Scott
Marketing Director- Friends of Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Chimney Tops Trail
Trails Forever Rehab
Trails Forever LogoThe Chimney Tops Trail is one of the iconic trails in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This 2.0 mile trail is one of the most popular trails in the park because of its length and the spectacular views from the top. This trail will be the primary project for the 2012 Trails Forever Crew. This trail rehabilitation project will stabilize and improve the trail conditions to protect the resources and enhance the visitor's experience.

To support the work of the Trails Forever crew, you can donate online at any time through Friends' website.  And through a matching grant from the Aslan Foundation of Knoxville, your dollars will be doubled!

The Chimney Tops Trail will be closed Mondays through Thursdays from April 30th through October 18th while this work is in progress. The volunteer workdays for this project will begin in May.

Check out the Volunteering Tab and join us for a workday on the trail (2012 workdays schedule is here)!

Volunteers will work to complete a variety of trail rehabilitation tasks. There will be a limit of the number of volunteers for each of the workdays and you must sign up in advance to volunteer with the crew. Once you sign up and secure a spot for one of the workdays, you will receive more details. To sign up, contact Christine Hoyer, Trails & Facilities Volunteer Coordinator at 828-497-1949 or

Watch Scripps' Networks video about the Trails Forever work on the Forney Ridge trail-

Trails Forever Crew Improves Hiking in the Smokies
Trails Forever Crew Improves Hiking in the Smokies

The Park maintains an up-to-date list of road, trail and facility closures online.  And you can get official park road closure info on Twitter, too.  Just follow @SmokiesRoadsNPS


Marking Ginseng
Reducing Poaching
NPS Photo

For many centuries, and in many countries, wild ginseng has been highly valued as a medicinal plant.  Today, that had led to the illegal export of wild ginseng poached from inside the boundaries of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Indeed it has been eliminated from many areas of the backcountry, making it a most-threatened natural resource because of this criminal activity.  One of the ways that the staff of Great Smoky Mountains National Park combats the illegal harvest of ginseng is by marking the roots, both covertly and overtly, with a bright dye.  When the plant is pulled, it may become obvious that the roots have been marked, or it may manifest later after the plants go to market in major cities across the U.S.

We'll bring you more details about this program in our next print newsletter, featuring information form an interview with Smokies Chief Ranger Clayton Jordan.

Generous support from the Knoxville Garden Club will help in the identification and apprehension of individuals who seek to harm sensitive plant species in the Smokies purely for personal gain.

Read more about ginseng in this issue of Dispatches from the Field.
Cades Cove Fencing
deer over fence
Restoration of historic fencing is needed to replace several miles of barbed wired currently in place.  In addition to improving the living conditions for Cades Cove wildlife, this change will further increase scenic beauty in the valley and enhance its historic appeal.

Photos by Sam Hobbs

Get Smart, Go Green
smartbank smartgreen
SmartBank's Board Members presented $15,012.04 to Friends of the Smokies and Great Smoky Mountains Association.
Front row (l-r): Holly Scott (FOTS), Billy Carroll, Terry Maddox (GSMA). Back row (l-r): Geoff Wolpert, Bill Carroll, Greg Davis, Keith Whaley.

Since SmartBank began offering its SmartGreen account to its customers and employees three years ago, the program has generated $31,000 in contributions to help preserve and protect Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

SmartBank has partnered with Friends of the Smokies and  

Great Smoky Mountains Association to donate a portion of every SmartGreen signature-based debit card transaction
to benefit the
Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Learn more about the SmartGreen account.  SmartGreen clients who always choose "credit" instead of debit when using the SmartGreen debit card help contribute to Great Smoky Mountains National Park!
Come Join Us
Community Day
Sat., April 21st 

Little River Trading Company
11 a.m. - 5 p.m.
We'll be back for the 2nd Annual Community Day at Little River Trading Co. in Maryville, TN this Saturday.

When you shop, tell your friendly LTRC associate you'd like to give a portion of the sale to Friends of the Smokies.

It's also Customer Swap Day- bring your gently used gear to trade for same.

Contact Us

Tennessee Office-
3099 Winfield Dunn Parkway
Kodak, Tennessee 37764

North Carolina Office-
160 S Main Street
Waynesville, North Carolina 28786
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