THE APPALACHIAN TRAIL COMMUNITIES ASSOCIATION proudly announces the recent appointment of Cassandra Kessman , Pawling , as Ambassador 2013 for the Harlem Valley Appalachian Trail (A.T.) Pawling Dover Community . Ms. Kessman holds a degree in Environmental Studies from MCLA, North Adams, MA . An avid gardener and student of herbalism, she is employed by Native Landscapes (adjacent to The Appalachian Trail). In addition, she serves as Education Director for the Pawling Nature Preserve where she leads informative hikes for visitors.
According to the Appalachian Trail Communities blog , Ambassadors “bring inspiration” to their communities to get involved with the A.T. They also inform their neighbors about stewardship opportunities and invite “residents to experience the wonders of the trail”. Further they are volunteers who provide outreach, education , local projects, support events and initiatives in conjunction with the A.T. Community Advisory Committee and local maintaining Trail Club. The program has been in effect for one year and presently has named 17 Ambassadors along the A.T. which runs from Maine to Georgia.
The Appalachian Trail Community Program recognizes communities that promote and protect the Trail as well as act as good friends and neighbors to the Trail . The program also serves to assist communities with economic development through tourism and outdoor recreation while preserving and protecting the A.T. The A.T. Communities was founded in 1925 by volunteers and federal officers to provide a continuous footpath along the Appalachian Mountains and is part of the National Park System. The Pawling Dover Community is thirtieth community and second in NYS to join the program.
All of us at Pawling Public Radio congratulate and welcome Cassandra Kessman, A.T.’s Ambassador 2013 and look forward to many educational adventures especially now that warmer weather is coming our way. Further information about The Appalachian Trail Communities and their programs: www.appalachiantrail.org and/or atcommunities.wordpress.com (A.T. Blog).
(condensed from The blog of the Appalachian Trail Communities)