– Power of the Partnership Year-End Celebration

This Year’s Event: the 10th Annual Celebration

More than 100 people gathered virtually to preview what’s to come in 2021, learn more about the Partnership and our work, find out how they can engage with the Partnership, and “meet” a diverse group of individuals and organizations that are making a difference across the South Mountain landscape. View the full event recording here.

Thank you to sponsors of the 10th Annual “Power of the Partnership” Celebration! Investing in the South Mountain landscape benefits us all. We could not accomplish our goals without the support of generous partners. Sponsor us!

During the virtual celebration, attendees heard from Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) and Cumberland County Commissioner, Vince DiFilippo, as well as a thanks to event sponsors – Franklin County Visitors Bureau and HRG Inc. – followed by a panel discussion about Landscape Conservation and the value of partnering to preserve the region took place with Lauren Imgrund, DCNR Deputy Secretary; Jonathan Peterson, Catalyst Fund Manager for the Center for Large Landscape Conservation; Janet Pollard, Executive Director of the Franklin County Visitors Bureau; Antonia Price, Project Manager for the Center for Land Use and Sustainability at Shippensburg University; and Dennis Shaffer, Director of Land Conservation for the Appalachian Trail Conservancy.

Katie Hess, Director of the South Mountain Partnership, presented the Spirit of South Mountain award that recognizes exemplary people, projects and organizations that significantly and positively impact the region by contributing to its sense of place through promoting or conserving its natural and cultural resources. This year’s recipient is Dr. Claire Jantz, Director of the Center for Land Use and Sustainability and professor at Shippensburg University.

2020 South Mountain Mini-Grant Awardees

The virtual event wrapped up with announcements of the 2020 South Mountain mini-grant award recipients, which are funded by DCNR through the Environmental Stewardship Fund. These grants are given each year to catalyze on-the-ground projects that further the goals of the Partnership, and to advance the capacity of partners to complete projects throughout the region. In the last 12 years, over 65 projects have been completed through the Program – just over $490,000 in grants have been awarded: leveraging more than $1,000,000 in matching funds.

Cumberland County Historical Society
“Two Mile House Management Plan and Interpretation” project that will preserve the historic building that was built in 1820 and build a connector trail to a nearby hospital for patients and staff to use

Conodoguinet Creek Watershed Association
“Creek Clean-up Equipment and Commemorative Booklet” project that will fund the purchase of a trailer for creek clean-up and riparian buffer planting events and allow them to do more outreach

Mt Tabor Preservation Project and Mount Holly Springs Borough
“Phase 1 of the Mt Tabor AME Zion Church Restoration” that will help begin the preservation process for this historic church built in 1870

Adams County Farmers Market
“Strategic Planning and SMP Partner Cross-Promotion” project that will address food insecurity in the region while supporting local farmers

Thank you to sponsors of the 10th Annual “Power of the Partnership” Celebration! Investing in the South Mountain landscape benefits us all. We could not accomplish our goals without the support of generous partners. Sponsor us!

 

‘Spirit of South Mountain’ Award Winners:

The 9th ‘Spirit of South Mountain’ Award was presented to Dr. Claire Jantz, Director of the Center for Land Use and Sustainability and professor at Shippensburg University. Michaux Forest District staff had this to say about Dr. Jantz: “She is as comfortable creating and leading collaborative dialogue around data sharing and research prioritization…as she is organizing, energizing, and executing trail building and litter clean-up work days across the Michaux’s diverse recreation stakeholder groups. I have never met someone with Dr. Jantz’s scientific chops so wonderfully integrated and with such good humor, commitment to community engagement and development, and motivation to do good – practically – and in all things.”

The 8th ‘Spirit of South Mountain’ Award was presented to Tonya White, of the Historic Round Barn & Farm Market and Thirsty Farmer Brew Works, for championing the creation of the South Mountain Conservation Landscape (South Mountain Partnership) in 2007. Tonya’s advocacy on behalf of this region led to alignment of and action around farm and open space protection, historic preservation, and expansion into new markets of tourism, agriculture, land protection, stewardship, recreation, heritage, and agricultural tourism.

The 7th ‘Spirit of South Mountain’ Award was presented to Karen Lutz, retired Mid-Atlantic Regional Director for the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC). Karen joined the staff of ATC in 1988 after volunteering and being a founding member of the Cumberland Valley Appalachian Trail Club.

The 6th ‘Spirit of South Mountain’ Award was presented to the Cumberland Valley Rail Trail Coalition in recognition their work that reflects the Partnership’s mission to collaboratively preserve and promote the landscape resources which make the South Mountain landscape unique and special, including a massive infrastructure project in Newville that installed one bridge and one underpass to address safety issues and open the trail to the east, one mile of trail was built at the Carlisle terminus, and an additional bridge was installed to connect the trail to downtown Shippensburg via Shippensburg University.

The 5th ‘Spirit of South Mountain’ Award was awarded to Franklin County Commissioners and Greene Township Supervisors, in cooperation with the Eagle Rock Project, led by The Conservation Fund, which worked to conserve over 1,100 acres of land in Greene Township.

The 4th ‘Spirit of South Mountain’ Award in 2014 (no award was given in 2013) was awarded to two organizations – the Land Conservancy of Adams County and the Conococheague Creek Trout Habitat Enhancement project. The Conservancy was selected due to its significant contribution to land conservation in 2014: seven conservation easements covering more than 1,060 acres of land. The Creek Project was selected for helping to sustaining the South Mountain landscape’s clean, high-quality streams and drinking water.

The 3rd ‘Spirit of South Mountain’ Award was presented in 2012 to the South Mountain Speakers Series Steering Committee for their tireless commitment to developing and implementing a series of free public presentations that showcase the special people, features, and events of the South Mountain region.

The 2nd ‘Spirit of South Mountain’ Award was given to Middlesex Township for the Trindle Road A.T. Trailhead project in 2011.

The 1st ‘Spirit of South Mountain’ Award was given to the Pine Grove Furnace State Park team for their outstanding partnership activities that directly support the vision of the South Mountain Partnership, including promotion of local agriculture, cultural heritage, natural resources, recreational opportunities, and business opportunities for over 500,000 visitors.