As we prepare for our small Thanksgiving celebrations, we, the Friends Board, are grateful for many things. We'll highlight our top items here:
We are most grateful for our Friends -- the volunteers on stand-by for when we can resume work parties, and our donors who made our annual fundraising drive a success. Donors took advantage of the 1-for-1 match, and we raised a total of $2290! Our ability to help NPS restore and improve the park is directly influenced by the support of our volunteers and our donors. We look forward to a brighter year in 2021, when we can restart our volunteer projects.
We have just a few quick updates as October comes to a close:
Our fundraising drive with donation matching ends on October 31st. Friends have donated $780 so far this month - a bit more than half of the 1-for-1 matching funds we have available. Will you donate before the match period ends on October 31st? Several generous donors have contributed to a matching grant of up of $1250. This means if you give now, your donation will be doubled!Read more
The park made a lovely backdrop to an outdoor wedding recently. It has been wonderful to see all of the different ways that friends and neighbors have found enjoyment in the park this year. We have several updates as we begin October:
As we head into Autumn, the theme seems to be: Hurry up and wait! We do have progress to report...and, we are still figuring out our new normal due to COVID-19. Thanks for bearing with us as we do our best to give you current, and accurate information.
In this e-blast:
We had hoped to have a fall work party to paint benches; however, that activity is delayed at least through September. The Park Service has extended their restriction on volunteer activities through September, and there is no guarantee at this point that October activities will be allowed. We will let you know if and when COVID-19 restrictions ease enough to allow a volunteer activity, and organize an event when NPS agrees that we can safely conduct one.
Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania would like to hear from you! In their own words:
Our research team from the University of Pennsylvania is working with the National Park Service to get a better understanding of how several NPS-managed small parks in Washington, DC function as public space. We are interested in how the Titanic Memorial park is valued, perceived, and used by the community. You can share your thoughts by taking this survey. We will be collecting responses through Sunday, August 16.
Please share your thoughts by completing this survey -- Thanks!
After a long lull in Park activity, things are ramping back up!
Fall Work Party
The Park Service is beginning to allow volunteer-led events, under restrictions due to COVID-19. We should to be able to have a fall work party (or two) to paint park benches. Participation will be limited. Expect that no more than 10 volunteers will be able to paint benches with social distancing, masks, and other precautions in place. Stay tuned for details!
Thanks for indulging us with weekly e-blasts through the month of April! We now return to our regular pace of about one e-blast per month.
In this e-blast:
The results of the international City Nature Challenge will be compiled through May 3. This year has been very different from past years, with a variety of stay-at-home orders nationally and internationally. Therefore, counts of observations and species vary widely from previous years due to those restrictions. We are very pleased that in the DC metro area, our count of observers is 1,511 - 15% over our observer count from 2019! Even with restrictions in our area, folks were able to get out and make at least one observation. You can visit DC's City Nature Challenge page to see what species were found in our area.Read more
This week we encourage you to celebrate Earth Day in new and creative ways.
We will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day on April 22nd, in ways that could not have been imagined just a few months ago. You have probably seen stories of the Earth renewing itself, and other stories about humans discovering nature in their midst. We invite you to pause on Earth Day to consider how your personal impact on the Earth has changed since March. What changes might you keep when the world returns to a semblance of "normal?"
Earth Day from the American Southwest to Southwest DC
Here's a great idea from Arizona: Celebrate Earth Day by creating art from nature you find in your backyard! Be sure to tag your creations on social media with #CelebrateEarth2020.
Water Quality monitoring
Water Quality monitoring is back on! The Anacostia Riverkeeper is re-tooling its training to offer virtual classes. If you were considering volunteering for this activity, there is still time to join in. Contact Corinne for details.Read more
We hope you continue to be healthy in body and spirit as we continue our social distancing measures to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Remembering the Anniversary of the Titanic Sinking
The RMS Titanic hit an iceberg and sank overnight on April 14-15, 1912. Our park is a daily tribute to this tragedy, and we encourage our Friends to join us in pausing to commemorate the anniversary. This year in particular, we want to recognize the loss of the heroes and the vulnerable onboard as well as those who played a role in the rescue. We rejoice remembering those who survived and mourn all souls lost.
The National Park Service has cancelled all gathering permits through at least May 15. Please keep in mind that DC remains under a stay at home order. We have postponed our Titanic Day of Service and will reschedule once these restrictions are lifted. In this spirit, we ask everyone to avoid any congregations at the Memorial this year as such gatherings do not constitute essential activities. Keeping ourselves and others safe is the best way to commemorate the anniversary this year.Read more
As promised, here are updated details about the City Nature Challenge. We hope you can join this Thursday's webinar, iNaturalist 101. (Note, April 9 is Thursday, not Friday!)
City Nature Challenge/City Nature Month
The City Nature Challenge is now City Nature Month! The focus is on observing nature in your own backyard, and this can be done through entire month of April, not just the last weekend. In the last 7 days, there have been over 8,000 observations!
There is still plenty of time to join in the fun. DC's 2020 City Nature Challenge site has been updated to explain what individuals can do during City Nature Month.
DC's CNC leaders will also provide on-line webinars to teach participants how to become involved. Here are the details for Thursday's webinar, iNaturalist 101:
- Thursday, April 9, 2020
- 12:00 noon - 1:00pm
- via Zoom - register here
iNaturalist 101 will cover the basics of using the iNaturalist app and provide more details about the re-vamped City Nature Challenge.Read more