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2017 Accomplishments

Trails & Carriage Roads

  • In partnership with Acadia National Park, rehabilitated, in an historically accurate style, an .8-mile section of the Seaside Path from Jordan Pond to the Stanley Brook Bridge; when completed, the path will continue to Seal Harbor with 99 percent of the work done by FOA stewardship volunteers
  • Replaced 600 feet of bogwalk on the Jordan Pond Path and 700 feet of smaller sections of bogwalk around the park, almost entirely with volunteer labor, and rebuilt 17 bridges
  • More than 500 volunteers, including 225 young people, participated in Take Pride In Acadia Day, raking leaves from 10 miles of carriage roads
  • Volunteers contributed more than 9,000 hours toward carriage road maintenance and nearly 5,000 hours working on trails including restoring the Valley Trail

Tomorrow’s Stewards

  • Merged the Ridge Runner and Cadillac Summit Steward programs to create a powerhouse team of eight young people who contacted more than 8,000 visitors about Leave No Trace principles on Cadillac Mountain and other summits in the park; they assisted the National Park Service with 59 closures of the Cadillac Summit Road, eight search and rescue operations, and the destruction of more than 1,100 misleading or visitor-created cairns
  • In conjunction with the Summit Stewards, the Acadia Youth Technology Team created four videos for social media highlighting proper stewardship behaviors in the park; the videos received more than 64,000 combined views
  • Funded two outdoor classrooms at the Trenton Elementary School and Piscataquis Community School in Guilford to enable students to have regular outdoor learning experiences
  • Piloted a partnership with Park Journeys and Studio 345 to bring 25 urban youth from Charlotte, NC to Acadia for a life-changing national park experience, complemented by outdoor education and stewardship activities in their hometown

Wild Acadia

  • Initiated planning to restore the wetland at the former septic field at Sieur de Monts
  • Explored and documented on-the-ground conditions of the 5,500-acre Marshall Brook watershed and associated drainages, joining Cromwell Brook as a priority watershed system to be studied and improved as part of Wild Acadia
  • In partnership with Canon U.S.A., the University of Maine, the Maine Natural History Observatory, and College of the Atlantic, monitored the water quality at Jordan Pond, water levels at the Great Meadow, and stream discharge and water quality measurements in six streams in and around Acadia
  • Celebrated five years of partnership with Canon U.S.A., which has provided state-of-the-art equipment as well as funding that supports a variety of Acadia programs

Preserve & Protect

  • In partnership with L.L.Bean, supported the Island Explorer, which celebrated its 7 millionth passenger; in 2017 the bus system was used by a record 581,305 passengers, prevented an estimated 3.1 tons of smog-causing pollutants from being emitted, and avoided the discharge of 2,035 tons of greenhouse gases
  • Funded an integrated visitor use model on Ocean Drive to help the National Park Service assess how different transportation alternatives might affect crowding, safety, and the visitor experience
  • Acadia Winter Trails Association groomers put 300 miles on the new Kubota in different snow and temperature conditions and helped develop new travel lane signs to educate the public on best share-the-road practices for winter users on the groomed sections of the carriage roads


An Island Explorer bus on the Park Loop Road1991-1996: Raised $3.4 million endowment to maintain the park’s 44-mile carriage road system in perpetuity

1997: Led negotiations to avert a clear-cut on 1,600 acres adjacent to park’s Schoodic District

1998: Achieved, with the park, a first-in-nation jet-ski ban on all ponds inside a national park

1999: Co-developed and co-funded the fare-free, propane-powered Island Explorer bus system

1999-2001: Raised $13 million for Acadia Trails Forever, making Acadia the first national park with an endowed trail system

2002: Obtained $1 million from L.L.Bean to support the Island Explorer; subsequent renewals brought total L.L.Bean funding to $4.25 million

2007: Purchased and protected 25 acres on Acadia Mountain, threatened by development

2010: Successfully lobbied the Maine legislature to limit open carry of firearms in Acadia

2011: Celebrated Friends of Acadia’s 25th Anniversary with a grant to pilot the Acadia Youth Technology Team

2012: Inaugurated the first phase of the Acadia Gateway Center in Trenton, giving the successful Island Explorer bus fleet a permanent home in a Gold LEED-rated maintenance and administration facility

2013: Completed the Duck Brook Connector Trail, fulfilling the original Acadia Trails Forever goal of establishing five village connector trails

2013: Helped realize permanent protection for the 1,400 acres of intact forest and wetland of Schoodic Woods

2015: Marked the 25th anniversary of Take Pride in Acadia Day, Friends of Acadia’s most important annual volunteer event

2016: Matched a Centennial Challenge Grant that provided funding to bring 1,461 students and their teachers to Acadia for ranger-led boat excursions

2016: Provided leadership and organizational support for the Acadia Centennial, joining with 453 Acadia Centennial Partners to collectively host more than 150 events and create more than 125 Centennial products

2016: Completed a $26.5-million campaign to launch Acadia into its second century

By the Numbers*

Number of members: 5,016
Grants to the park and communities since 1986: $27.7 million
Island Explorer ridership since 1999: 7.2 million
Number of FOA-funded seasonal staff serving Acadia National Park annually: 171
Number of full-time staff: 14
Endowments and other investments: $49.6 million
Annual operating budget: $4.4 million
Publications: Friends of Acadia Journal (3 issues annually), Annual Report, E-News (11 issues annually),

* as of December 31, 2017

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