For more than 20 years customers of Great Outdoor Provision Co. have taken home more than cool outdoor gear on the first Saturday of June – they have been helping to save North Carolina’s wild places. Great Outdoor Provision Co. celebrates Land Trust Day as a way to give back on National Trails Day.
“Land Trust Day helps to highlight the rapid rate at which North Carolina is losing – and will continue to lose – its beautiful open spaces to development,” said Tom Valone, Great Outdoor Provision Co. founder. “Events like Mountains-To-Sea Trail Month and Land Trust Day increase our customers’ awareness of the importance of local land trusts.”
This spring Columbia, Merrell and Patagonia helped in the underwriting for grants to help protect the Mountains-to-Sea Trail and along with the launch of North Carolina’s first Youth Conservation Corps (NCYCC). The NCYCC is North Carolina’s inaugural effort from the Conservation Trust of North Carolina. The program is designed to provide youth ages 16-24 with hands-on outdoor work in natural areas. Tasks include trail construction and maintenance, habitat restoration, stream clean-ups and invasive species removal.
Mountains-to-Sea Trail Month and Land Trust Day were both founded by Great Outdoor Provision Co. The first takes place in May to celebrate North Carolina’s State Trail. Land Trust Day is held on National Trails Day, which is always the first Saturday in June. Great Outdoor Provision Co. provided matching funds to the above grants bringing the total contribution to over $15,000.
“We see Land Trust Day as a way for businesses to participate in a self-imposed ‘earth tax’,” said Valone. “Many people do not realize the important work land trusts are doing in their communities. We hope by supporting land trusts we are calling attention to their good work and contributing to it.”