Capt. John Smith Trail marks 10th year

ANNAPOLIS — The Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail marks its 10th anniversary this year, coinciding with the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service (NPS). Trail partners and communities will recognize the anniversary with a series of related events and projects.
Established on December 2006, the 3,000 mile Trail is administered by the National Park Service Chesapeake Bay Office. It connects people with places evoking the Chesapeake of 400 years ago, and with stories of American Indian communities and culture, of Smith’s 1607-1609 voyages of exploration, and of the Bay and its rivers.
The Trail offers opportunities for tourism, environmental and cultural education, conservation, and recreation. The Chesapeake Conservancy serves as the National Park Service Chesapeake Bay office’s primary nonprofit partner on the Trail.
Nearby locations that serve as trailheads include Tangier Island, Somers Cove Marina, Janes Island State Park, and the boat ramps in Rehobeth and Pocomoke City (Laurel Street).
“For the last 10 years, we have embraced the John Smith Chesapeake Trail as the inspiration and framework for large landscape conservation and increased public access throughout the Chesapeake. This landscape shapes our culture and traditions and defines our communities,” Joel Dunn, president and CEO of the Chesapeake Conservancy said.

“As the National Park Service celebrates its 100th anniversary, I’d like to remind people in this region that they have a National Park in our collective backyard. The John Smith Chesapeake Trail, comprising much of the Chesapeake, is as beautiful and precious to our nation as the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, or Yosemite.”
The Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail is the first all-water National Historic Trail spanning from Cooperstown, New York to Virginia Beach, Virginia. When Captain John Smith made his Chesapeake voyages in 1607-1609, there were an estimated 50,000 native people already living in the region. He mapped it with astonishing accuracy using a compass, sextant, hourglass and information shared by the Native Americans.
The trail is marked at several places on the water by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) buoys as part of the Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy System (CBIBS). Accessible by cell phone or via the Internet, these buoys transmit real-time data as well as historical information for recreational and educational uses.

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