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Public Awareness Perspective


In celebration of the 25th Anniversary of Earth Day, the National Parks and Conservation Association (NPCA) will hold its sixth annual March for Parks on April 21-23,1995. More than 800 communities, representing all 50 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands, will participate in the march, the only nationwide Earth Day event held each year since 1990.

This year's theme for March for Parks is "Our Parks, Our Communities." Citizens nationwide will raise funds and awareness for important park issues in their communities. All proceeds stay at the local level to fund the park projects identified by each organizing group.

Last year, March for Parks funds were used to repair historic buildings, plant trees, build trails for disabled visitors, create gardens, start park crime-watch programs, and buy land for new parks. The program is endorsed by the Illinois Association of Park Districts and the National Recreation and Park Association.

Flagship March for Parks events will take place in San Francisco, Cincinnati, Washington, D.C. and St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, Several marches are also being planned in Canada and Russia.

To support local marches, NPCA provides organizers the following materials free of charge:

  • A comprehensive guidebook on how to organize a local march.
  • A Teacher's Guide for events focused on children.
  • A sample brochure/pledge form for walkers.
  • March for Parks posters and signs.
  • Sample press releases, PSAs and logo sheets.
  • Certificates of Appreciation for walkers.
  • A toll-free number for advice and answers to questions.

The national corporate sponsors of March for Parks include Clairol Herbal Essences, Foghorn Press, Faultless Starch/Don Ami, Hi-Tec Sports USA, Georgia-Pacific, Polaroid Corp., and Tom's of Maine. Local sponsors have also been secured for community marches.

For more information or to find the location of any march, call 1-800-NAT-PARK.

Illinois Agencies Hosting
March for Parks

The following Illinois agencies are planning local marches (as of March 15,1995):

Belleville Park and Recreation Department
Burbank Park District
Carbondale Park District
Chicago Ridge Park District
Elk River Recreation District
Fon du Lac Park District
Franklin Park Park District
Granite City Park District
Hickory Hills Park District
South Suburban Special Recreation Association
Riverside Playground and Recreation Board
Wauconda Park District
Waukegan Park District
Wheaton Park District

In addition to these agencies, many local schools, walking clubs, conservation groups, and civic organizations are hosting marches in support of their community parks.

46 Illinois Parks & Recreation March/April 1995

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