GSMA and National Park News

  1. National Park Dedicates Dean Stone Bridge

    National Park Dedicates Dean Stone Bridge

    Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials unveiled a bronzed marker along the Foothills Parkway at the newly dedicated Dean Stone Bridge between Walland and Wears Valley.

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  2. Park Superintendent Recognizes First African American Naturalist

    Park Superintendent Recognizes First African American Naturalist

    Great Smoky Mountains National Park Superintendent Cassius Cash on Thursday, August 29,had the unique opportunity to meet and recognize Dr. Joe Lee of Jupiter, FL, for his service as the first African American park naturalist. Superintendent Cash presented Dr. Lee with a mounted ranger hat in honor of his contribution to the history of the National Park Service.

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  3. Upcoming Winter Park Closures Due to Roadwork

    Upcoming Winter Park Closures Due to Roadwork

    Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials announced that the main access roads into Cades Cove and Cataloochee will be closed for several months this winter for road construction projects.

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  4. Genealogical Research Collection Donated to Park

    Genealogical Research Collection Donated to Park

    Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials are pleased to announce the addition of a new research collection to the park archives. The Donald Bruce Reagan Genealogical Collection is now available to aid genealogists in researching their family history.

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  5. GSMA set to release its fourth album of traditional American music

    Big Bend Killing

    Big Bend Killing: The Appalachian Ballad Tradition celebrates Appalachia’s rich legacy of songs that tell stories, a tradition traceable to the British Isles. Big Bend Killing features 32 new recordings of traditional ballads by leading UK- and American-roots music luminaries, including Rosanne Cash, Doyle Lawson, Archie Fisher, Alice Gerrard, Sheila Kay Adams, Martin Simpson, Jody Stecher, Kate Brislin, David Holt, John Lilly, Elizabeth LaPrelle, Amythyst Kiah, and Laura Boosinger with the Kruger Brothers.

    “This album offers 32 remarkable ballad performances, 31 of which have never been released,” said Ted Olson, professor of Appalachian Studies and Bluegrass, Old-Time, and Country Music Studies at East Tennessee State University and the album’s producer. “Our goal with this album is to encourage people – young and old – to recognize the enduring beauty of these often overlooked narrative songs, and our hope is that more people will sing these and other ballads so that the tradition won’t fade away."

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  6. The Civilian Conservation Corps Art Program in the Smokies

    Many visitors to the Smokies are familiar with the Civilian Conservation Corps. This Depression-era government program was one of President Franklin Roosevelt’s most popular and successful relief programs. Millions of young men were fed, clothed and housed, and in return, they planted more than 3 billion trees, worked on soil conservation projects in the western United States, and helped construct hiking trails and other infrastructure in state and national parks. Their toil helped shape the modern state and national park system we enjoy today. The Smokies are no exception.

    To find evidence of CCC handiwork, visitors today need to look no further than the park headquarters building in Gatlinburg, numerous features along Highway 441, including various bridges, tunnels and the Rockefeller Memorial, not to mention the hundreds of miles of hiking trails in the park.

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  7. Park Announces Foothills Parkway Opening

    Foothills Parkway

    Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials plan to open the long-awaited section of the Foothills Parkway between Walland and Wears Valley, TN on Saturday, November 10. The public will be able to experience the entire 16-mile roadway for the first time since construction began in 1966, including the 1.65-mile section known as the ‘Missing Link’ which is now connected by a series of nine bridges.

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  8. Things to consider when planning a visit to the Smokies

    Cades Cove Visitor Center

    When planning a visit to Great Smoky Mountains National Park during the government shutdown, here are some things to keep in mind:

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  9. We won! GSMA Brings Home Three Awards from Public Lands Alliance

    Photo of Susan Sachs at PLA conference

    Great Smoky Mountains National Park education branch chief Susan Sachs accepts her award for Agency Leadership and speaks to her years of partnership building during the Public Lands Alliance’s 2019 conference in Denver, CO.

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  10. A conversation with the authors of the new Kephart biography

    Book cover of Back of Beyond by George Ellison and Janet McCue

    Working with literary authorities George Ellison and Janet McCue to edit their new book, Back of Beyond: A Horace Kephart Biography, was like being a roadie for a dynamic singer-songwriter duo (imagine going on tour with Van Morrison and Joni Mitchell). George and Janet are so creative, so steeped in the literature of the Smokies region, and so attuned to all things Kephart that it was mesmerizing and magical to interact with them on a daily basis.

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