The Colorado-based Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics has selected Peninsula State Park as a 2023 Spotlight site. The center’s new Spotlight program recognizes communities nationwide that are meeting the challenge of record visitation to their outdoor areas by providing multiday, on-site education and programming.
“The Spotlight initiative highlights the great steps a community can take to protect an area that they cherish,” said Dana Watts, executive director of Leave No Trace.
Peninsula State Park will have its time in the spotlight June 8-10, when the Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Team will collaborate with park staff, the Friends of Peninsula State Park and Destination Door County (DDC) on stewardship projects at the park. DDC forged an ongoing partnership with the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics in 2020.
“We’re looking forward to this Spotlight spurring thoughtful conversations about community conservation and inspiring action for the future of Door County,” said Morgan Rusnak, DDC’s community engagement manager.
Although the Spotlight program is national in scope, individual sites are nominated locally. The sites selected for 2023 all have distinctive environmental challenges and opportunities, and, in addition to Fish Creek, they include areas in Dallas; Las Vegas; Damascus, Virginia; Kanab, Utah; River Falls, Wisconsin; Lakeside, Arizona; Oglesby, Illinois; Wheat Ridge, Colorado; Packwood, Washington; Bend, Oregon; New Paltz, New York; and Raleigh, North Carolina.
In all of these places – where natural beauty abounds – maintaining the delicate balance between recreational use and environmental stewardship is crucial, said Peninsula State Park naturalist Krista Lutzke.
“Leave No Trace is not only an essential aspect of responsible outdoor recreation, but also a powerful reminder of our role as stewards of the natural environment,” she said. “Every time we take steps to minimize our impact on the natural world, we contribute to the development and growth of our local communities.”
On June 10 – to culminate the weekend and in conjunction with National Get Outdoors Day – Leave No Trace and Peninsula State Park will host a park-wide stewardship project aimed at reducing visitor-created impacts through improved trail access and rehabilitating outdoor areas.