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2016, 2015, 2014, 2013

Aid to Park - 2016

GSMA’s aid-to-park funding in 2016 was $2,005,787, according to Executive Director Laurel Rematore, capping another strong year of support.

The association’s contributions to Great Smoky Mountains National Park fall into three broad categories:

  • Cash donations, which are provided for a host of educational, historical, interpretive, and scientific projects
  • In-kind services, which is primarily labor expense
  • Publications and digital media, which include development costs and free publications

Special projects funded by GSMA totaled $862,167 and included:

  • $18,251 – Bear Collars. The collars allow researchers to track bears that may be obtaining human-related food.
  • $13,350 – Two law enforcement SCA/interns, who help rangers encourage the public to enjoy the park safely.
  • $137,557 – Some 23 Resource Management and Science interns, who help rangers manage wildlife and fisheries, develop GIS maps, save hemlock trees, monitor air and water quality, and many other tasks.
  • $900 – Cades Cove Bicycle Patrol. This award-winning group helps keep bicyclists and wildlife safe in the park.
  • $50,400 – Cades Cove Fence Repair and Maintenance.
    Repair of historic fencing to discourage vehicles from driving in Cades Cove fields.

  • $8,000 – Cades Cove Viewshed Field Management. Mowing fields to maintain wildlife viewing and historic appearance of Cades Cove.
  • $5,000 – Alfred Reagan Tub Mill Repair. This historic, water-powered grist mill is now operational for the first time in decades.
  • $3,000 – Cataloochee Field Management. Mowing fields to maintain wildlife viewing and historic appearance of Cataloochee Valley.
  • $26,996 – Centennial Ambassador Program. Staff to communicate the park’s Centennial messages to the public and neighboring communities.
  • $1,000 – Centennial Hike 100 Smokies Challenge Pins. A special reward for hikers who accomplished the goal of hiking 100 miles in the park in 2016.

In-kind services totaled $780,906 and included salaries for staff at eight park visitor centers and publications development costs, including free publications, such as Smokies Guide newspaper and pre-press costs for sales publications.      

Funding for the park’s interpretive operations totaled $204,881 and included special events, festivals, and interpretive demonstrations, including the Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage, Music of the Mountains, Mountain Life Festival, sorghum molasses making, and library supplies and materials. A specific breakdown includes:

  • $50,996 - Backcountry Information staff
  • $43,307 - Library staff
  • $33,427 - Living history demonstrators
  • $13,019- Library operations
  • $28,573 - Parks as Classrooms Coordinator
  • $35,560 - Special events and demonstrations

       Last year’s $2 million donation brings
GSMA’s total contribution to the national park
during its 64-year history to $37,618,810.

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