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Grand Canyon & Zion Receive Grant Money to Help Maintain Historic Sites

Grand Canyon & Zion Receive Grant Money to Help Maintain Historic Sites
July 07
14:04 2016

The Grand Canyon Association yesterday announced it will receive a $250,000 grant provided by American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Grand Canyon qualified for the grant as one of the top three most voted for parks in the Partners in Preservation: National Parks campaign.GrandCanyonPark

“Partners in Preservation: National Parks has shed new light on the importance of rehabilitating historic resources in national parks and provided much needed funding to make them more accessible to visitors for years to come,” said Stephanie K. Meeks, President and CEO, National Trust for Historic Preservation. “And through their participation in the campaign, more than 140,000 Americans have reaffirmed that these places matter – to our history, our nation, and our communities.”

The Grand Canyon Association will apply the grant to help restore Desert View Watchtower, an imposing 70-foot-high stone building on the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. The National Historic Landmark was designed by famed architect Mary Colter and built in 1932. This area is currently being transformed to sustain a long range plan of tribal programming and celebrate tribal cultures.

Zion National Park also received a $201,000 grant to help preserve and maintain the historic Zion-Mt. Carmel Highway Switchbacks and the iconic 1.1 mile tunnel in the park.

According to Lyman Hafen, Executive Director of the Zion National Park Foundation, the initiative to vie for this grant proved that Zion National Park is a national treasure in the hearts of a large number of the 190,000 people who participated in the voting.

“It is very heartening to see how our proposal stood up with those of many of the great national parks across the country,” Hafen said. “This effort allowed us to connect with thousands of friends of Zion National Park, and shows how much people care about its future.”

Both parks will receive their grants in September of this year.

A decade after its inception, Partners in Preservation, a community-based initiative created to raise awareness of the importance of preserving historic places, honored the National Park Service Centennial by directing its efforts to historic sites within national park units in need of preservation support.

Twenty different park sites with unique histories, reflective of the diverse communities and experiences that comprise our nation’s cultural fabric, participated in the campaign. The winning sites accumulated the most votes throughout the campaign, which was hosted by media partner National Geographic, from May 25 through July 5.

“The Partners in Preservation program is an excellent example of the many ways private organizations have always been essential to the success and longevity of the National Park System,” said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. “These grants will enable our parks to restore and preserve priceless historical features that make a visit to a national park so unique.”

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