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  • 18 November 2022 9:00 AM | David Pearson (Administrator)

    Raleigh – At the Friends of State Parks Annual meeting, the membership elected a new president along with officers and directors to lead the organization for the next two years.

    The annual membership meeting was held at William B Umstead State Park on October 29, 2022, at 10:00am.  Members voted to elected Tim Aydlett, as President, Steve Shelton as 1st Vice President, Michelle Leonard, 2nd Vice President, and Mary Jaeger-Gale is joining the FSP board as a director.

    Long time FSP member Tim Aydlett from Elizabeth City, NC, was elected FSP president.  Tim, a retired Perquimans County school principal brings a wealth of knowledge and leadership to the office.  Along with FSP, Tim is a founding member of Friends of Dismal Swamp and Albemarle Conservation, a chapter of the NC Wildlife Federation.  Tim is a current board member of NC Beautiful and served on the NC Audubon board and the North Carolina Parks and Recreation Trust Fund from 2004 until 2010.  Tim is a certified Environmental Educator and received the Governor’s Order of the Long Leaf Pine for his contributions to conservation and education across North Carolina.

    Lewisville resident Steve Shelton, a successful Winston-Salem business owner will serve as 1st Vice President.  Steve has volunteered his time as an FSP board member and has served on the Novant Health Foundation Board, BBB of NWNC and Winston-Salem Street School.

    Michelle Leonard serves as 2nd Vice President and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the FSP board.  She is currently a town commissioner for the town of Bethania and serves as the Mayor Pro Tem.  Michelle has also served on the Blue Ridge Conservancy, Piedmont Land Conservancy, Audubon NC, Wachovia Historical Society, and Agricultural Extension Agency Winston-Salem Advisory Board to name a few.

    Mary Jaeger-Gale, of Henderson County, joins the FSP board as a director.  Mary’s leadership skill and knowledge has been demonstrated with Chimney Rock Management, LLC as Chairman of the Board for the Chimney Rock attraction. Mary currently serves as 1st VP of the Rutherford County Tourism Development Authority.  Other associations include the Southern Highlands Attractions Association, NC Travel Industry Association, Southeast Tourism Society, and the federally designated Blue Ridge National Heritage Area.

  • 06 November 2015 6:07 PM | David Pearson (Administrator)

    Dear YIPEE committee and FSP,

    I wanted to thank you all for getting the kids from Neighborhood Ecology Corps (N.E.C.) out to Merchant’s Millpond! We had such a wonderful time!

     Here’s a short recap:

    On the night we arrived, Ranger Ben took us on an evening hike where we learned the calls of various nocturnal animals. Later, we ate s’mores and slept in the outdoor classroom. In the morning, we had a blast canoeing with Ranger Joy, Ranger Ben, Ranger Sean, & Boss in “the swamp of our dreams”. At the start of the trek, the kids were zig-zagging all over the pond, but by the end, they knew how to follow with great skill. After lunch, Ranger Joy took us on a tour of the visitor center where we learned about the various wildlife at the park. The day ended with some journaling.

    Because of your support, these kids were able to have many firsts:

    None of them had ever visited Merchant’s Millpond State Park.

    For some, this was their first time sleeping outside and going on a night hike.

    Many had never been canoeing before, and for those that had, they increased their paddling skills!

    Again, thank you for making this trip possible! 

    Jennifer Fenwick

    Interpretation & Education Assistant

    North Carolina State Parks

    (352) 561-1170

  • 06 July 2015 5:22 PM | David Pearson (Administrator)

  • 27 April 2015 6:12 PM | David Pearson (Administrator)

    Today was a wonderful field day at Mt. Jefferson State Natural Area and New River State Parks. Thanks so much for the YIP-EE Grant.

    Here are a few photos of the field day.

    Theses students spent the entire school day learning and enjoying the outdoors at two great North Carolina State Parks.  



    Thomas D. Randolph
    Lead Interpretive and Education Ranger
    Mt. Jefferson State Natural Area

  • 22 July 2014 4:48 PM | David Pearson (Administrator)

    As its director, Murphy will oversee the state’s 35 parks and four recreation areas, 20 natural areas, seven lakes, four rivers and four state trails – all told, nearly 220,000 acres of land and water. Murphy succeeds Lewis Ledford, who retired after 37 years of service to the state parks system. Murphy assumes his duties July 22.

  • 01 July 2014 4:49 PM | David Pearson (Administrator)

    Spring FSP Newsletter Online Map Guide, Funding,YIP-EE and news from the parks and local groups 

    2014 Spring.pdf

  • 18 June 2014 4:50 PM | David Pearson (Administrator)

    Letters from students who attended a Yip-EE program at Hanging Rock State Park, a day out in the park with rangers and volunteers with funding from FSP and our members. 

  • 01 May 2014 4:57 PM | David Pearson (Administrator)

    Now with updated maps to included added acreage, trails, and newly built visitor centers.Highlights include brand new maps for Chimney Rock and Carvers Creek State Parks. Get yours Now 

  • 01 May 2014 4:50 PM | David Pearson (Administrator)

    Winter FSP Newsletter Online Map Guide, Funding,YIP-EE and news from the parks and local groups

Friends of State Parks, Inc.

PO Box 37655

Raleigh, NC  27627

Friends of State Parks, Inc. is a nonprofit, tax-exempt charitable organization (tax identification number 58-1634155) under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.  Donations are tax deductible as allowed by law.

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