Alabama State Parks seek submissions for third annual ‘Eagle Awards’


Special to the
Opelika Observer

The Alabama State Parks Division of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources will once again recognize special contributors to the parks with its prestigious Eagle Awards to be presented Feb. 2, 2019 at Lake Guntersville State Park.
Nominations are open online at and the awards will be presented in five categories: Elected Official, Community Partner, Park Partner, Volunteer in Parks (VIP) and Youth (students 12th grade and younger).
“We are looking forward to our third annual Eagle Awards,” said Alabama State Parks Division Director Greg Lein. “We are indebted to so many friends, volunteers and elected officials who help and support us throughout the year. This is one way we can recognize them and let them know how much they mean to us and to our parks. We know we have had a lot of individuals and organizations who have contributed in many important ways and we look forward to seeing the nominations.”
The deadline to make an online nomination is Jan. 2, 2019.
The Eagle Awards presentation ceremony will begin at 1:30 p.m. at Lake Guntersville State Park, kicking off that day’s Eagle Awareness Weekend. Following the ceremony, Auburn University’s Raptor Center will do presentations on birds of prey.
Here are the 2019 Eagle Award nomination categories:
Elected Official
Our parks are shining examples of important quality of life amenities and the strong economic drivers needed in our communities. The support of elected officials is critical to the success of our parks. This award honors an elected official who has worked in conjunction with the parks to help fulfill its mission to preserve natural areas, operate recreational facilities and extend the public’s knowledge of the state’s natural environment
Community Partner
The parks cannot succeed without the cooperation and support of community organizations such as other government organizations, chambers of commerce, tourism organizations and local businesses. These groups understand that the success of the park means success for the community and work in many different ways to help the parks achieve their goals.
Park Partner
Organizations work to provide or maintain amenities in the parks, such as hiking and biking trails, that otherwise might not exist due to the allocation of resources for other services. This award celebrates those partners who see a need and cooperate with park leadership to fill it
Volunteer in Parks
These VIPs work in various ways to make our parks system better. Volunteers may be providing physical labor or strategic planning to improve one park, or the entire system of parks. This award honors a person who gives of his or her time for the benefit of every person who visits the parks, all without any expectation of any recognition.
Our parks inspire young – and old, alike – but the impression left on youngsters often lives with them forever. Many turn their love of the parks, of the outdoors, into projects to benefit some of their favorite places – often as part of a Scouting program. This award, for students 12th grade and younger, honors the person whose contribution is extraordinary.
About Alabama’s State Parks System
The Alabama State Parks is a division of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. The division maintains 22 parks encompassing approximately 48,000 acres of land and water. These parks rely on visitor fees and the support of other partners like local communities to fund the majority of their operations. Download the State Parks app at
For more information about Alabama State Parks, go online to


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