Everyone is asking you for money right now. My recycling bin is full of circulars, flyers and pleas for money. Most are worthwhile causes but not organizations I’m involved with.
But this is not a plea for donations; it’s an opportunity to join organizations that supports the same causes you do. Yes, I should tell you that your donation is tax-deductible but that’s not why you join outdoor organizations. You and I are members because we believe in what they do. Heck, if we’re members, we are the organization.
So here’s my list. Feel free to share it.
Carolina Mountain Club – My local hiking club and the largest hiking club in Asheville. We hike four to five times a week, year-round.
Friends of the Smokies – Friends of the Smokies supports so many projects in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. I lead monthly hikes for the group, but that’s only one of so many good works, including the Trails Forever program.
Friends of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail – Friends of the MST champions the Mountains-to-Sea Trail Across North Carolina. The MST is over 1,000 miles, but on the Blue Ridge Parkway, we know it as the trail blazed by white circles.
Great Smoky Mountains Association – GSMA assists Great Smoky Mountains National Park by managing the bookstores and publishing the most authoritative books and maps on the Smokies.
If you look at the picture above of Clingmans Dome, you’ll see the intersection of all these groups. CMC leads hikes to Clingmans Dome. The MST starts here, in the center of the Smokies. Which organizations will you join now?