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Friends of Maryland State Parks Awards Small Grants/Big Impact Awards

| March 26, 2022, 10:34 AM

The Friends of Maryland State Parks recently awarded fifteen grants totaling $25,800 to Maryland State Parks statewide. These funds will enable parks throughout the state to collaborate with community partners to educate visitors on alternative energy, build legacy and inspiration gardens, provide bilingual water safety signage and make kayaks available for water trails. 

“As the Maryland Park Service enters this new decade, our parks are being used more than ever by over 20 million annual visitors,” says Mel Poole, Board President, Friends of Maryland State Parks. “It is important for us to give back to keep our parks vital for this and future generations.” 

Launched in 2020, the Small Grants, Big Impact! Program of the Friends of Maryland State Parks and is designed to inspire people from all backgrounds to connect with, celebrate, and support Maryland’s State Parks and their community-based programs. Through its Small Grants program the nonprofit pro-vides $2,000 grants to state parks to help them achieve their mission of excellence, bringing smiles to park rangers and visitors alike. This year’s funding exceeds last year’s allocation by 90% thanks to increased contributions. 

These second round of grants came after the introduction of SB541 / HB727 – The Great Maryland Out-doors Act in the 2022 Session of the General Assembly that will significantly increase the investment into our state parks now and in the future. We can often take for granted that our parks simply exist. However, it takes time, energy, and support from the state, individuals, and partners working together to ensure wise stewardship and enjoyment of Maryland’s State Parks. 

Liquified Creative Annapolis

2022 Small Grants, Big Impact Project Awards 

Assateague Island State Park (2 projects) 

The first project will continue creating pollinator habitats through the park. The second project will demonstrate an alternative energy demonstration campsite that will replace a generator with green energy options. 

Deep Creek Lake State Park 

Upgrade interpretive signage at the Discovery Center to connect exhibits at the center with the county amenities. New signs will include text in braille to compliment the Sensory Trail at the park. 

Gambrills State Park 

Developing a new Camp Out program to provide camper kits to local community members interested in learning to camp. 

Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park 

Creating a new legacy garden that will educate visitors to the flora and fauna that was present during the time Harriet Tubman lived. Besides interpretive panels, Park Rangers will provide guided hikes. 

Janes Island State Park 

Construct two new “Inspiration” garden areas. One will feature an oyster garden using “Taylor” style floats and the other will feature native plants on a raised bed. 

North Point State Park 

Construct a native plant garden that will demonstrate best conservation practices. 

Pocomoke River State Park 

Construct enclosures for the enrichment and well-being of birds of prey housed in the park’s aviary. 

Rocky Gap State Park 

Complete renovations at the park’s nature center that will improve interpretive exhibits and increase access. 

Sandy Point State Park 

Build new lifeguard stands that will include signage to communicate public safety messages in English and Spanish. 

Sang Run State Park 

Complete renovations to the Election House. Installing signage and interpretive panels will bridge for-mal and informal school field trips. 

South Mountain State Park 

Install two new food storage poles to secure food from the reach of bears, raccoons, and other wildlife on the Appalachian Trail. 

Martinak State Park 

Procure six kayaks and gear for use by park visitors as part of Caroline County’s “Healthy Parks, Healthy People” program. 

Wolf Den State Park 

Plant trees in open areas in need of best conservation practices and t mitigate current erosion issues. 

Youghiogheny State Park 

Construct a Champion Tree Trail and install interpretive signage that features two-county tree champions. 

Category: Annapolis Gives, Local News, NEWS

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