mangrove forest

Thanks to a family donation, a new space for outdoor adventure, recreation, and play will be available to the public in Maine.

This week, President Obama announced the designation of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument as America’s 413th participating space of the National Park System.

As well as being a thriving eco-system supporting geological biodiversity, the beloved monument is a beloved hotspot of Maine residents for skiing, hunting, fishing, and canoeing.

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The new national park was made possible through a generous donation of 87,500 acres by Roxanne Quimby and her family. The gift has been facilitated by the National Park Foundation as part of its Centennial Campaign for America’s National Parks.

In addition to the new park land, the gift includes an endowment of $20 million to supplement federal funds for initial park operational needs and infrastructure development at the new monument, and a pledge of another $20 million in future philanthropic support.

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“As the National Park Service begins a second century of conservation this week, the President’s designation of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument serves as an inspiration to reflect on America’s iconic landscapes and historical and cultural treasures,” said U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell. “Through this incredibly generous private gift for conservation, these lands will remain accessible to current and future generations of Americans, ensuring the rich history of Mainers’ hunting, fishing and recreation heritage will forever be preserved.”

“The National Park Service marks its centennial this week with a renewed commitment to tell a more complete story of our nation and to connect with the next generation of park visitors, supporters and advocates,” said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. “I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the Centennial and underscore our mission than by adding this extraordinary piece of Maine’s North Woods to the National Park System, and sharing its stories and world class recreation opportunities with the rest of the world.”

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Through the Centennial Campaign for America’s National Parks, the National Park Foundation seeks to raise $350 million for programs and projects designed to protect America’s special places, connect people from all backgrounds to parks, and inspire future generations of national park stewards. With this gift, the Foundation has raised more than $300 million toward the goal.

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