April - May 2013

The Friends of the Cape Cod National Seashore helps keep Province Lands Visitor Center open this summer




This spring, Friends has offered whatever volunteer and financial support it can give to the Seashore to help offset the effect of sequestration cuts to many Seashore programs and services.


The most dramatic example of our impact - allowing the Province Lands Visitor Center to open this summer - is detailed below. Please help Friends help Cape Cod National Seashore in coping with reduced federal funding. If you are not a member, Join, Volunteer, Donate, get involved.



                                         Richard Spokes


Ptown visitor center


Province Lands Visitor Center

to remain open this summer


 Thanks to Friends!


Recently, the Friends board of directors voted unanimously to donate $25,000 to Cape Cod National Seashore for the express purpose of allowing the Province Lands Visitor Center (PLVC) to open this summer. 


Threatened with complete closure in 2013 due to the mandated budget cuts required by the federal sequestration, the PLVC will now be open seven days a week through the summer season, from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Traditionally, the center has been open from May 1 through October 31.


Friends funding will be used to hire two seasonal park rangers for the shortened season. This is the minimum staffing required to cover the seven-day-a-week operation and provide basic information, orientation, resource protection, and safety services at the center.  


Nearby Old Harbor Life-Saving Station will remain open for a few days each week. The popular Life Saving Drill, which relies on volunteers - many of whom are Friends members - and permanent staff, will continue.  The Eastern National sales outlet at PLVC will also remain open during the summer season.


Superintendent George Price stated "We are very grateful to the Friends of the Cape Cod National Seashore for their generosity and willingness to once again come to the assistance of the seashore in order to support the mission of protecting resources and serving visitors."


Canoe at Salt Pond    

Sequestration and the 2013 season 

at Cape Cod National Seashore


In a recent press release, Superintendent George Price announced that the 2013 summer program has been finalized with the incorporation of a $376,000 mandated reduction to the CCNS budget from sequestration.  The plan includes significant cuts to visitor services, elimination of most ranger-led interpretive and educational programs, fewer biological technicians to monitor critical resources, and reduced custodial services.


Fortunately, a substantial donation from the Friends of Cape Cod National Seashore, allows the Province Lands Visitor Center - originally scheduled for complete closure under sequester cuts - to open for a shortened season from Memorial Day to Labor Day (see article above.)


The Salt Pond Visitor Center in Eastham will remain open year round, seven days a week. Other seashore activities that are fee-funded, such as lifeguard operations at the six beaches and off-road vehicle driving will continue. As usual, there will be some closures for shore bird protection. The Seashore's partner and concessioner facilities such as the Highland Light, Highland House Museum, Highland Links, Nauset Light, and Nauset Knoll Motor Lodge will remain open.


Interpretive services provided by volunteers (including many from Friends!) at the historic Captain Penniman House and Three Sisters Lighthouses, Eastham, and Old Harbor Life-Saving Station, Provincetown, will continue. However, the number and variety of interpretive programs this summer will be significantly reduced. Examples of eliminated programs include nature walks at locations like Nauset Marsh and Fort Hill; snorkeling in a kettle pond; beach campfires; beach yoga; the Provincetown tour; bird walks; shellfishing demonstrations; wading programs, extended hikes in Truro and Provincetown; and children's programs. Some 49,000 people attended these programs in 2012.


According to Price, "Our staff has worked diligently to piece together a very modest program within budget constraints. We're happy to say that some of our signature programs, such as the Life Saving Drill at Old Harbor, which relies on permanent staff and volunteers, and canoe trips in Salt Pond that are funded by use fees have survived the cuts this year."


Please check the seashore web site at www.nps.gov/caco or the seashore newspaper for current programs and hours.


coast guard beach


Earth Day Project:

Help clean-up Coast Guard
and Nauset Light Beaches

 and other projects


Monday, April 22, 9 AM - Noon


As those of you on the Cape have probably seen for yourself, the winter storms have really dealt a severe blow to our beloved beaches and shores.  The wind and waves of these powerful storms also brought along a tremendous amount of trash, deposited all along the shoreline.


Our original plan was to work with a crew from the Park to collect trash along the shore. However, at this writing, the piping plovers have arrived and are beginning to nest. So we may need to divert our attention to other storm-related chores, such as spreading some gravel on the pathways near Coast Guard and taking down a storm-damaged foot bridge.


Whatever the project, if you would like to help, email us at:



Old Harbor shot
Restoring the historic Life-saving Station in Province Lands
is an example of the charitable work of the Friends


Will bequests

Another way to give to Friends


Preserving and protecting the things we treasure is a wise investment. Bequests allow you to make a meaningful gift to the Friends of the Cape Cod National Seashore without jeopardizing your family's security.  


A bequest can be cash or specific property. It can be designated for general purposes or a specific program, fund or project. Naming the Friends of Cape Cod National Seashore in your will gives you peace of mind that you are helping to protect the Cape Cod National Seashore forever.


If interested in learning more, please go to the Friends web site at  www.fccns.org.


Click on "Donate" and then scroll to the bottom of the Donate page to "Name the Friends of Cape Cod National Seashore in Your Will." Please contact us at info@fccns.org with any questions.