Blue Ridge Parkway Partners
World-famous scenery and outstanding opportunities for camping, hiking, and other recreational activities have made the Blue Ridge Parkway the most visited unit of America’s National Park System. Funding has not always kept pace with increasing visitation, aging infrastructure, and the need to work with local communities on protection of adjacent land. Many people care deeply about the Parkway and its future. Through a variety of organizations, they are joining hands to protect and preserve this very special place and, beyond that, to enhance the quality of the park experience that so many visitors enjoy.
The Blue Ridge Parkway Association is a proud partner for many organizations, including:
Founded in 1997, this non-profit foundation is the primary fundraising organization for the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Foundation is the professional fundraising organization that provides private funding to the 469-mile Blue Ridge Parkway in western Virginia and North Carolina. The Foundation solicits donations and bequests from individuals, as well as grants and corporate support for a broad range of programs and activities. Funds do not support maintenance but only those projects and programs that add a margin of excellence to the park's mission, enhance the visitor's experience, and have a lasting value. www.brpfoundation.org.
This non-profit educational organization helps to staff visitor centers, providing information and selling books and other items that help you enjoy the Parkway and our Southern Appalachian region. Profits from the sale of educational materials are returned to the park to support interpretive programs and research. www.easternnational.org.
FRIENDS is a non-profit membership organization founded in 1988. They provide major support to the park’s Volunteers in Parks program, the first FRIENDS group to do so nationally by mobilizing and providing leadership for volunteers who assist with a wide variety of Parkway projects. www.blueridgefriends.org.
Land & Conservation Trusts
The Western Virginia Land Trust www.westernvirginialandtrust.org, the Conservation Trust for North Carolina www.ctnc.org, and Blue Ridge Forever www.blueridgeforever.info work to protect lands adjacent to the Blue Ridge Parkway. These groups serve a vital mission in preserving open space in local communities as well.
The National Council for the Traditional Arts
For nearly 70 years, NCTA has produced and supported a variety of traditional arts programs in national park areas across the United States. By formal agreement with the Parkway, NCTA supports the Blue Ridge Music Center at Milepost 213 near Galax, VA by providing a summer concert series and working toward permanent museum exhibits that chronicle the history of our region’s musical heritage. www.ncta.net.
Blue Ridge National Heritage Area
Established by Congress in November, 2003, this organization promotes the natural abundance and richly varied cultural history of the North Carolina mountains and is charged with the preservation, interpretation, and development of heritage resources in the state’s 25 westernmost counties and the Quallah Boundary. www.blueridgeheritage.com
Southern Highland Craft Guild
The Blue Ridge Parkway’s Folk Art Center at Milepost 382 in Asheville and the Parkway Craft Center at the Moses Cone Memorial Park at Milepost 294 in Blowing Rock are home to the Southern Highland Craft Guild. Free programs, includes regional and national exhibitions of contemporary and traditional crafts, helping the Parkway promote regional cultural heritage. www.southernhighlandguild.org.