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July 5, 2011

The Friends of the Smokies organization is by far one of the greatest organizations related to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The FOTS staff are some of the most passionate and dedicated folks I know, and I have proudly volunteered alongside them with much enthusiasm and pride. I must say, I have always been amazed at how every Friends event runs smoothly and no loose ends are to be found. This organization knows what it means to cross their t’s and dot their i’s. As a lover of the mountains, I will support them at every opportunity and continue to encourage others to do so as well.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

watching them grow over the years I've been involved.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

hire additional staff, as every employee I've worked alongside seems to have their plate full.

June 30, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
June 30, 2011

I've volunteered for Friends of the Smokies for 4 years by working on their annual Evergreen Ball, telethon, and programs that they assist such as the Gatlinburg Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage. Many wonderful programs and projects that the Great Smoky Mountains National Park provides would not be possible without the support from the FOS. The money they raise helps fund the Hemlock Protection program, Parks as Classrooms, and Trails Forever. These are critically needed projects for the future environmental health of the park and the enjoyment of the millions of people who visit.
I've enjoyed being a volunteer for the Friends of the Smokies due to the dedicated, hard-working, and fun staff at their office.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I've seen the results of National Trail Day improvement, the work on the Hemlock trees, and read about the Parks as Classroom program

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

can't think of any

May 9, 2011

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May 9, 2011

I have the greatest regard for Friends of the Smokies organization and have had opportunity to interact with staff in the office setting and at special events where I've worked as a volunteer, including Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage each April and Wilderness Wildlife Week each January for last 5 or more years.

All of the staff seem to love the Smoky Mountains and appear to be super-dedicated to making everything they do help the GSMNP Park Service. It appears every event they put together turns out to be a 5-star, 1st-class endeavor.

One particular event I found awesome was the way they were able to help the GSM Park Service pull the "Once in a Lifetime" Cades Cove Loop Lope together on such short notice when it was learned the contracted service to resurface roadways was going to be complete earlier than planned, and it turned out to be such a tremendous success!!! I felt honored to get to work as a volunteer for that, too, and hope they will be able to make it an annual event, perhaps on the first Saturday of April or May.

It is always great to read about the Evergreen Ball each year, and in 2009, they did such a great job for an entire year of events for the 75th Anniversary and Rededication Ceremony.

I realize that FOTS' primary role and biggest achievements are in relation to the donations that support so many programs for the GSM Park Service, but they are so much more personal than just fund-raising folks, and I feel honored to have had contact with them over the years.

I strive for the day I can provide more financial support, but 'til then, will have to enjoy the privilege of the volunteer hours I can give.

Nancy Anderson
Fairhope, Alabama

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Through my activities, I've gained contacts and had opportunities to learn more about the Smokies which I'm enjoying sharing with my grandchildren in hopes that they will grow to love the Smokies and be responsible stewards of GSMNP.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I find it amazing that the staff can accomplish all that they do every year, so feel that if they were to have one or two additional staff.... well, maybe not...... I like the GSMNP right where it is and they already seem able to move mountains!!!!

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3 hours of volunteer time for this nonprofit will...

Assist with a special event to raise funds for Great Smoky Mountains National Park.