Walking has its rewards for Paul Perensovich at Sitka National Historical Park

Ann Wilkinson of the Sitka Community Hospital Foundation and Sitka National Historical Park Ranger Ryan Carpenter draw the winning entrant's name in the quarterly drawing of the Park Prescriptions Program. In the program, local health providers prescribe regular hikes for their patients, and those who complete their punch cards are entered into a quarterly drawing for a $100 cash prize. Paul Perensovich was the Spring 2014 winner. (Photo Courtesy of Sitka National Historical Park)

Ann Wilkinson of the Sitka Community Hospital Foundation and Sitka National Historical Park Ranger Ryan Carpenter draw the winning entrant’s name in the quarterly drawing of the Park Prescriptions Program. In the program, local health providers prescribe regular hikes for their patients, and those who complete their punch cards are entered into a quarterly drawing for a $100 cash prize. Paul Perensovich was the Spring 2014 winner. (Photo Courtesy of Sitka National Historical Park)

On Saturday, April 19, Sitka Community Hospital Foundation President Ann Wilkinson, awarded this quarter’s winner of the Park Prescriptions Program with a $100 cash prize. Mike Perensovich, a long-time Sitka resident, Park Watch Volunteer, and Park Prescriptions participant, was the lucky recipient.

Sitka National Historical Park’s award-winning “Park Prescriptions Program” represents a partnership between the National Park Service and various healthcare providers in Sitka. The program provides incentives for the community to get outdoors and exercise to improve health and well-being.

At the drawing, Wilkinson underscored how the “Sitka Community Hospital Foundation is proud to be a sponsor of the Park Prescriptions Program.” She noted that “promoting healthy lifestyle habits is an important part of our mission, and that the Park Prescriptions Program is a great way to encourage walking and enjoying the great outdoors in our National Park.” The foundation announced it will sponsor the program again for another year, providing quarterly $100 prizes for participants who qualify.

Local health providers write park prescriptions to their patients, who fill the park prescriptions by taking walks through the totem trails at Sitka National Historical Park. Every time people take a walk, they get a punchcard stamped at the park’s visitor center, and when the punchcard is full it is entered for quarterly prize drawings. The Park Prescriptions Program got its start through the Sitka Health Summit.

For more information on how you can start down the path to wellness by participating in the Park Prescriptions Program ask any uniformed Sitka National Historical Park staff or visit www.nps.gov/sitk.

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Sitka National Historical Park wins Alaska Community Service Award for Health for Park Prescriptions program

Sitka National Historical Park Senior Ranger Carin Farley, right, celebrates with Eric and Sarah Jordan after they became the first people to complete a Park Prescriptions punch card in early 2013.

Sitka National Historical Park Senior Ranger Carin Farley, right, celebrates with Eric and Sarah Jordan after they became the first people to complete a Park Prescriptions punch card in early 2013.

Sitka National Historical Park is pleased to announce that its Park Prescriptions program has received the Alaska Community Service Award for Health from the Alaska Public Health Association (ALPHA).

According to ALPHA, Sitka National Historical Park was chosen for its “significant contribution to the health of Alaskans” by fostering “improved personal health through outdoor physical activity” in the park. John Quinley, the assistant regional director from the National Park Service’s Alaska Regional Office, will accept the award on behalf of Sitka National Historical Park at the Alaska Health Summit on Wednesday, Jan. 29, in Anchorage.

SitkaNationalHistoricalParkSignAccording to a press release from Sitka National Historical Park Chief of Interpretation and Education Becky Latanich, the park “extends its thanks to the Sitka Heath Summit for its support of the program and to all of the local healthcare providers that have participated in the initiative.  The park also thanks its partners at the Sitka Community Hospital Foundation for sponsoring the program’s participation incentives.”

The Park Prescriptions program strengthens the connection between the health care system and public lands by promoting walking the trails at Sitka National Historical Park to improve physical health, as well as emotional and mental well-being.

Local health providers write park prescriptions to their patients, who fill the park prescriptions by taking walks through the totem trails at Sitka National Historical Park. Every time people take a walk, they get a punchcard stamped at the park’s visitor center, and when the punchcard is full it is entered for quarterly prize drawings.

For more information about the program, contact Ranger Carin Farley at 907-747-0127.

Sitka National Historical Park to host public meetings about the installation of new wayside exhibits

NewSNHPWaysideSignsThe Sitka National Historical Park will host the first of two open houses this month on Saturday, Nov. 16 to debut the Revised Wayside Exhibit Plan. The meeting will take place from 3-5 p.m. at the park’s Visitor Center.

Starting at 3 p.m., copies of the plan and life-sized examples will be available for review. At 4 p.m., a short presentation will debut all 17 of the waysides and provide an opportunity for community discussion. The meeting is open to the public and all are encouraged to attend.

The wayside planning effort, which began in January of 2011, is nearing its conclusion. The exhibit plan reflects public feedback that was received over the course of the past two years. The newly revised plan contains current text that could be considered final, but many graphics are still low resolution or positioned as placeholders until final artwork or photography is received.  Following these public meetings, the wayside exhibits will be fabricated this winter and installed during the summer of 2014.

There are many options for submitting feedback:

  1. Drop in during the open house/public review session from 3-5 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 16.
  2. Review the document online at:  http://www.waysideexhibits.com/HFC/SITK/SITK-18WE-DP.zip  Send written comments to the Chief of Interpretation, Becky Latanich, either by email (becky_latanich@nps.gov) or by regular mail: Sitka National Historical Park, 103 Monastery St., Sitka, AK 99835.
  3. Call the Chief of Interpretation at 907-747-0132
  4. Stop by the park’s Visitor Center and review a hardcopy of the plan. The Visitor Center is open Tuesday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Comments will be accepted through Friday, Nov. 29.

For more information, please contact Becky Latanich at 907-747-0132 or becky_latanich@nps.gov.

About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 401 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more about the Sitka National Historical Park at http://www.nps.gov/sitk or visit the park’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/#!/SitkaNationalHistoricalPark.

• Sitka National Historical Park draft wayside exhibit plan (large PDF file, 24.5 MB)