Youth Employment in Parks Builds Sustainable Beach Trail to Previous Site of Humpback Whale

June 12, 2017, Anchorage, AK – Adorned in hard hats and bright green shirts, the 20 teens who make up this summer’s Youth Employment in Parks (YEP) program are hard to miss. Monday, June 12 to Thursday, June 15, the youth will construct a trail at Kincaid Park down from the Jodhpur motorcross track to the Anchorage Coastal Wildlife Refuge. This is their first improvement project of the summer.

Last July, the beach received extra attention and more visitors than usual when a humpback whale washed up in the coastal wildlife refuge. Without an official trail down, the banks became webbed with social trails and heavily eroded. A new, sustainable trail with a more gradual slope is now in the works. Youth Employment in Parks will spend the week finishing the construction of the new trail, revegetating the eroded areas with native species, and installing posts and rope along the trail. The new access point will be known as Refuge Access at Jodhpur.

A community volunteer opportunity will be hosted on Thursday, June 15 at 1pm. Volunteers, including a group from Wells Fargo, will work with the Youth Employment in Parks teens in one final push to complete the trail.

In its 11th season, Youth Employment in Parks is a summer work program coordinated by the Anchorage Park Foundation and Anchorage Parks and Recreation, that brings together a diverse group of teenagers from all over Anchorage. The teens make improvements to the city’s parks and trails throughout the summer, while also building character, developing their professional skill set, and becoming civically engaged. Other projects this summer include building a 9-hole disc golf course in Davis Park, planting a rain garden in Valley of the Moon Park, and stabilizing the banks of the Campbell Creek to mitigate trail erosion. The program continues to positively engage a new generation of young leaders as conservation stewards of public lands and of the Anchorage community.

“One of my favorite moments in the Youth Employment in Parks program is when the teens realize the impact of their work in the community. The Refuge Access at Jodhpur will be instrumental in preserving the park’s ecosystem as well as create an important beach access,” says Beth Nordlund, Executive Director of the Anchorage Park Foundation.

Refuge Access at Jodhpur Volunteer Opportunity
Thursday June 12th, 1pm
Meet in the Jodhpur parking lot
8200 Jodhpur St.