Busy Saturday planned for Public Lands Day

On Saturday, more than 60 volunteers will commemorate the 15th annual National Public Lands Day by working on special projects at Grand Canyon National Park.

National Public Lands Day (NPLD) is the nation¹s largest, hands-on volunteer effort to improve and enhance the public lands Americans enjoy.

In 2007, approximately 110,000 volunteers built trails and bridges, planted trees and plants and removed trash and invasive plants in almost 1,100 locations around the country. This year, organizers hope to increase participation to almost 120,000 volunteers "lending a hand to America's public lands" in as many as 1,500 locations nationwide.

At Grand Canyon, volunteers will be working on three primary projects. On the North Rim, volunteers, including students from Grand Canyon School, will be assisting the park's vegetation program by collecting native seed for future restoration projects and planting container plants grown in the park's nursery. On the South Rim, Volunteers for Outdoor Arizona and other individual volunteers will be assisting the Park's vegetation program by removing invasive plant species and collecting native seeds.

Arizona Mountaineering Club will also be volunteering on the South Rim, using their specialized skills to help with trash removal from below the rim.

In return for donating their time and effort, volunteers on Grand Canyon vegetation projects will receive an orientation to the park and to the area's natural vegetation.

Mountaineering volunteers will learn about the threats that trash and coins pose to wildlife, including the park's endangered California condors. All people who spend National Public Lands Day volunteering at a federal site, including Grand Canyon National Park, will receive a pass for one day's free entrance to be used within the next year at any National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management or U.S. Army Corps of Engineers site that charges an entrance fee.

In addition to the volunteers who will be making a special trip to the Grand Canyon to work on NPLD projects, there will already be at least 20 volunteers in the park who regularly give of their time, augmenting park staff and working on longer term projects. That means that at least 80 volunteers will be generously donating their time on NPLD to make Grand Canyon National Park a better place to visit and to recreate.

The staff at Grand Canyon National Park would like to thank all of the volunteers who so generously give of their time. Without them, many of these projects would not be possible.

For information about volunteering at your favorite national park, follow the link below.

To learn more about volunteering at Grand Canyon National Park, call 928-774-7278.

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