Education

Northeast alpine steward with hiker

Stewarding the Adirondack High Peaks

Summary

  • YEAR: 2016
  • GRANT RECIPIENT: Adirondack Mountain Club
  • PROJECT: Stewarding the Adirondack High Peaks
  • AMOUNT: $5,000
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Northeast alpine steward with hiker

With such good weather this year, it isn’t surprising that the number of visitors to the High Peaks has again skyrocketed. This is the sixth year in a row to set a record for the number of contacts made. To put a 36,355 person year in context, when the Summit Steward program started in 1990, stewards spoke with just over 7,000 hikers. This year saw a fivefold increase over that season.

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Rey Center

Welch Ledges Stewardship and Science Program

Summary

  • YEAR: 2012
  • GRANT RECIPIENT: The Rey Center
  • PROJECT: Welch Ledges Stewardship and Citizen Science Program
  • AMOUNT: $2275
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Rey Center

Welch Ledges Stewardship and Science Program

In 2012, the Waterman Fund awarded the Rey Center from Waterville Valley, NH $2,275 for the Welch Ledges Stewardship and Citizen Science Program. The Rey Center then led five stewardship hikes for camp and school groups and the general public, teaching participants about the unique flora and Leave No Trace stewardship practices to protect the Ledges.

In addition, four volunteer Welch Ledges stewards were trained as educators, and they subsequently contacted 1,370 hikers with a stewardship message and introduced those with more interest to the outcrop community at the ledges. For the science part of the project, observers recorded the paths and behavior of 580 hikers to lay the groundwork for a vegetation monitoring program, and citizen science volunteers were trained to participate in future monitoring.

A spin off result of the Welch Ledges program was the development of a field-based education program for Plymouth State College undergraduates, and the training of graduate students who delivered the Welch Ledges Stewardship curriculum to camp and school groups.

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Mountain Stewardship Program

Mountain Stewardship Volunteer Program

Summary

  • YEAR: 2011
  • GRANT RECIPIENT: Monadnock Ecological Research and Education Project
  • PROJECT: Mountain Stewardship Volunteer Program
  • AMOUNT: $4,080
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Mountain Stewardship Program

Mountain Stewardship Volunteer Program

In January 2011, the Waterman Fund awarded Antioch University New England in Keene, NH $4,080 for its Monadnock Ecological Research and Education (MERE) Project to help build the capacity of their Mountain Stewardship Volunteer Program. MERE hired a Volunteer Coordinator to increase collaboration and communication and build relationships with Monadnock State Park staff and other partners.

As a result, MERE was able to provide more effective mountain coverage on days with school groups; host a volunteer thank you event; participate in a January 1 Trails Day event; organize a trail maintenance workshop; and sponsor Get Outside Day May 5.

The Waterman Fund grant helped MERE reach a new level of mountain stewardship by expanding and cementing its relationship with the park.

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Alpine Signs Project

Alpine Signs Project

Summary

  • YEAR: 2010
  • GRANT RECIPIENT: Green Mountain Club
  • PROJECT: Alpine Signs Project
  • AMOUNT: $1,360
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Alpine Signs Project

Alpine Signs Project

In January 2010, the Waterman Fund awarded the Green Mountain Club $1,360 to create a series of engaging, educational, and durable signs about Vermont’s alpine zone. Working with a graphic designer, they created three eye-catching “Do the Rock Walk” posters that were printed on long-lasting vinyl banner material. Ample supplies of replacement posters were also printed. Volunteers constructed 48 birdhouse sign boards and GMC Caretakers installed 20 signs during the 2012 season.

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