National Geographic : 2007 Feb
LETTERS congratulating you for stating the obvious. Our parks are suffering badly because of wrongheaded financial priori ties and ideas about best use. GAY KRAMER-DODD Eugene, Oregon This is a wonderful article highlighting the precious gift we Americans have in our national parks. There is a fund ing crisis that I contribute to by being a senior. At age 62, one can receive a Golden Age Pass port that costs only ten dollars for life! I have used mine fre quently. With approximately 2.9 million Americans turning 60 this year, I feel strongly that seniors can contribute more to the parks that we cherish. JOACHIM F.WIRTH Coeur d'Alene, Idaho "Now we must learn how to speak with the people who haven't been coming," Howard Levitt of Golden Gate National Recreation Area said in your article. The people who haven't been coming to national parks, Corrections, Clarifications October 2006: Map Supplement: U.S. We regret that the following place-names were misspelled on the map: Southold, NY; Barberton, OH; Elizabethton, TN; Suwannee, FL; Tavares, FL; Isle Royale, MI; Keweenaw Bay, MI; St. Joseph, LA; Thibodaux, LA; Terrebonne Bay, LA; Ridgway, CO; Centerfield, UT; Marysvale, UT; Ni'ihau, HI. Pollution Within Phthalates are no longer used in the manufacture of food wrap as mentioned on pages 123, 128, and 135. Nor are they used in water bottles (page 135). Phthalates are plasticizers with a variety of uses, such as dissolving fragrances and making PVC flexible. or who come but look bored, are young kids. Several years ago I discovered the Junior Ranger program, in which you complete a booklet as you go around the park and get a badge as a souvenir. I enjoyed itso muchthat Iset up aweb site to display my badges and inform other kids about the program (juniorranger.info). It allows kids to learn things about nature, history, and culture in a fun way. I've got over 250 badges and patches, and even though I'm 13 now, I hope to visit more parks. SAM MASLOW Brooklyn, New York I feel that today's environmen tal challenge is coordinating urbanization with nature. Thank you for reminding your readers that we thrive in nature. Hopefully city planners will begin to integrate nature and cities as a catalyst for the health of residents. MARISSA MARKOWITZ Fairfield, Iowa The article on Paris parks was interesting reading. But I think the statistic that 30 percent of Paris is park space is mis leading, since most of that space is concentrated in only two parks-Bois de Boulogne and Bois de Vincennes, which are mostly urban forests and quite unsafe at night. Perhaps a better measure of urban parks is how evenly they are dis persed throughout the city. For example, in Paris many of the suburbs that are crowded with housing projects and disaffect ed immigrants have hardly any parks, which can only increase the residents' alienation. ANDY PATTERSON Washington, D.C. "FOR THE INCREASE AND DIFFUSION OF GEOGRAPHIC KNOWLEDGE" The National Geographic Society is chartered in Washington, D.C., as a nonprofit scientific and educational organization. Since 1888 the Society has supported more than 8,000 explorations and research projects, adding to knowledge of earth, sea, and sky. JOHN M. FAHEY,JR., President and CEO EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENTS Terrence B. Adamson Linda Berkeley, President, Enterprises Terry D. Garcia, Mission Programs John Q. Griffin, President, Magazine Group Nina D. Hoffman, President, Books and School Publishing Group Betty Hudson, Communications Christopher A. Liedel, CFO BOARD OF TRUSTEES Gilbert M. Grosvenor, Chairman Reg Murphy, ViceChairman Joan Abrahamson, Michael R. Bonsignore, Martha E. Church, Roger A. 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