Nature Noted

Notes on a changing Nature

Location: Bellville, Texas, United States

I never would have predicted this one

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Take a hike

The nation's newest conservancy is also one of the oldest. The 80 year old Appalachian Trail Conference has changed its name to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. Makes it sound more like an environmental organization that a small college football league, and they don't even have to change the monograms on their luggage! Seriously now, why the change? Here's the explanation on the new website.
"“Conference” does not describe our primary work today, and it confuses people who might otherwise want to support us. (Not to mention those who call seeking to rent a meeting room at our “conference center.”) While the Appalachian Trail welcomes three to four million visitors a year, only a tiny fraction—less than one percent—are members of the ATC, supporting the uncommon care behind the uncommon place they have just enjoyed. Our research showed that Trail users did not see a reason to join an organization that, if they knew about it at all, exists only to coordinate “the real work” done by others.
If the A.T. is going to survive well into the twenty-second century, we must lay the groundwork now for raising our profile and growing our membership base. Without a higher public profile and broader public support, we will be unable to fend off the impact of threats, such as communications towers and road construction and tree-killing pollution, or provide the Trail-maintaining clubs with the financial and other support that they have identified as a critical need."

The name change was made last year and actually became effective July 4th.


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