In honor of the National Park Service Centennial, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, LeConte Lodge, and Great Smoky Mountains Association partnered together to provide the popular “Day Hikes of the Smokies” guide book to all 4th grade students in Sevier County. This generous donation, made possible by Leconte Lodge, is in recognition of the National Park Service’s Every Kid a Park initiative.
“LeConte Lodge Limited is honored to partner with the Great Smoky Mountains Association and the National Park Service in support of the Every Kid in a Park campaign. By donating the “Day Hikes of the Smokies” book to fourth graders in Sevier County, we hope to encourage more families to spend quality time hiking together and exploring all that the Great Smoky Mountain National Park has to offer,” said William B. Stokely, IV, president of LeConte Lodge Limited Partnership.
On Friday, May 13, 2016, Great Smoky Mountains National Park Superintendent Cassius Cash and Tasha Wade, vice president and chief financial officer of LeConte, visited the fourth grade students at Pittman Center Elementary to hand deliver the hiking guide books in time for summer break. Great Smoky Mountains National Park Centennial Ambassadors distributed the hiking guide books to the additional Sevier County fourth grade students throughout the following week.
“We hope this book inspires the students of Sevier County, and their families, to explore their park this summer and develop a lifelong connection to the natural world around them,” Superintendent Cassius Cash.
Fourth graders nationwide can visit the new Every Kid in a Park website to obtain a pass that provides free access to students and their families to all federally managed lands and waters – including national parks, forests, wildlife refuges and marine sanctuaries. The pass grants free entry for fourth graders and three accompanying adults (or an entire car for drive-in parks) at more than 2,000 federally managed sites.
Fourth graders can log onto the website at www.everykidinapark.gov and complete a fun educational activity in order to obtain and print their paper pass. Students may also trade in their paper pass for a more durable pass at participating federal sites nationwide.