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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Environment, Land Resources Conservation, Natural Resources Conservation & Protection

Mission: Friends of Acadia preserves, protects and promotes stewardship of the outstanding natural beauty, ecological vitality, and distinctive cultural resources of Acadia National Park and the surrounding communities for the inspiration and enjoyment of current and future generations.

Programs: Friends of acadia makes grants from its acadia trails forever project fund to the anp trails program to maintain the park's 130 miles of trails. Projects in 2014 included the asticou/jordan pond connector trail that included rehabilitating 2 historic stone culverts and adding 29 new culverts in low lying areas, and restoring hundreds of feet of side drainage ditches. In addition, restoration of the gorge path that goes all the way to the cadillac summit was completed, and the quarry path and otter cove trails were finished. The park also completed the environmental compliance needed for the upcoming 2015 trail work. The acadia youth conservation corps assists with various projects, including cleaning drainage ditches and cutting and hauling brush. Friends of acadia makes grants from its acadia trails forever project fund to the anp trails program to maintain the park's 130 miles of trails. Projects in 2014 included the asticou/jordan pond connector trail that included rehabilitating 2 historic stone culverts and adding 29 new culverts in low lying areas, and restoring hundreds of feet of side drainage ditches. In addition, restoration of the gorge path that goes all the way to the cadillac summit was completed, and the quarry path and otter cove trails were finished. The park also completed the environmental compliance needed for the upcoming 2015 trail work. The acadia youth conservation corps assists with various projects, including cleaning drainage ditches and cutting and hauling brush.

the island explorer is a fare-free, seasonal, propane-powered bus system that runs through acadia national park and its surrounding gateway communities. Since its first day of operation in 1999, 5. 48 million visitors have ridden the bus, approximately 2. 08 million private vehicle trips have been eliminated, reducing smog causing pollutants by an estimated 29. 3 tons and green house gas emissions by over 19,187 tons. Friends of acadia has been involved with the bus systems since its inception, granting over $3 million in funding, and securing $2. 8 million in grants from l. L. Bean and others to enable the system to grow. Friends of acadia's grant supports the operating costs of 28 buses on mount desert island, and one on the schoodic peninsula.

the carriage road maintenance grant makes possible the salaries of six acadia national park workers who perform regular maintenance of the park's 44 miles of historic carriage roads. In 2014, the workers rock-raked, dragged smooth, and rolled the entire carriage road system at the beginning and end of the season. They restored vistas on the around mountain loop, spent two months removing fallen and dead trees from the entire system, and recovered and reset dislodged coping stones. This program uses thousands of volunteer hours from foa's volunteer program, and also uses the acadia youth conservation corps student employees.

additionally, friends of acadia contributes to a variety of community outreach events such as take pride in acadia day, national trails day, earth day roadside clean-up, and national public lands day. In partnership with acadia national park, friends implements and contributes to other programs including the ridge runners, the wild gardens of acadia, the acadia winter trails association, exotic plant eradication, wheelchair accessible carriages and trails, acadia quest, the acadia youth technology team, the night sky initiative, the peregrine falcon and hawk watch program, teacher ranger teacher program, water quality monitoring and a volunteer program that contributes over 3,400 hours of time to maintain acadia's trails and carriage roads.

Community Stories

3 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Board Member

Rating: 5

Friends of Acadia is a top notch organization in every way: it has a clear mission broadly shared by the organization's membership and Board; visionary leadership that listens to the community and its members; collaborates actively with other like-minded nonprofits; works to support Park priorities where appropriate; careful stewards of donations and funds; thoughtful in taking positions and key issues; and knows how to make being active in the organization fun and rewarding. From picking up trash along the roadsides, family fun day, to the annual benefit auction, this is a an exceptionally well-run and effective group.

Jack R.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I was born and grew up on Mount Desert Island, so love of Acadia is my birthright. When i came home to the island in 2006 to life the last best third of life, I quickly joined Friends of Acadia. I have done regular volunteer work on ANP trails and carriage roads, done spring roadside clean-up on the island, written often for the FOA Journal, become a donor within my means, brought several friends into Friends and, since 2010, serve proudly and a member of the FOA Board, where I chair the Advocacy Committee. I am currently part of a team doing a full review of the FOA Strategic Plan. FOA gives me a community through which I can express values and commitment deeply important to me as a life-long conservationist. The strength and dedication of the FOA professional staff and the quality of my colleagues on the FOA Board make my investment in Friends a joyful natural act.

Board Member

Rating: 5

Friends of Acadia (FOA) provides the margin of excellence for all who visit and experience Acadia National Park in Maine. Working with the National Park Service, FOA has helped to conserve or purchase and donate to the Park many acres of private land within and adjacent to Park boundaries to preserve the natural surroundings. FOA has secured private donations to keep a free, seasonal, hop-on, hop-off propane bus system (over 2 million riders to date) that has taken hundreds of cars out of the Park and off surrounding roads, and reduced CO2 and other air pollutants by tens of thousands of pounds. Miles of trails and carriage roads have been maintained with over $1 million from FOA, many of which my wife, Mary Ann and I hike with great delight each year. Mary Ann and I pick up roadside litter on Earth Day, courtesy of FOA organizing 400 volunteers on Mt. Desert Island, where the bulk of Park acreage is located, and we both volunteer at the FOA office for various jobs throughout the year.