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Jewell to speak at Crater Lake

Secretary of the interior marks National Park Week
 Posted: 2:00 AM April 19, 2014

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell plans to kick off the annual National Park Week Saturday from the rim at Crater Lake.

Jewell plans to go cross-country skiing with Crater Lake National Park's volunteer ski patrol and then accompany a Eugene school group on an educational snowshoe walk as part of her visit, park Superintendent Craig Ackerman said.

The National Park Service's annual National Park Week begins today and runs through April 27. Fees will be waived today and Sunday at Crater Lake and 132 other national parks across the country.

The remaining 268 national parks don't charge entry fees, according to the National Park Service.

This year's National Park Week theme is "Go Wild," and Jewell will encourage people to visit and interact with national parks.

The National Park Service recently released a report that said national parks in 2012 generated $26.75 billion in economic activity and supported 243,000 jobs across the country.

This included $45 million in economic activity in communities near Crater Lake that supported 551 jobs, according to the NPS.

The former chief executive of the outdoor gear company REI, Jewell was sworn in a year ago as the secretary of the Interior Department, which oversees more than 70,000 employees and manages more than 20 percent of the nation's lands, according to the Interior Department.

Agencies under the secretary include the Bureau of Land Management, the National Park Service, the national wildlife refuge system, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Bureau of Reclamation.

National Park Week coincides with Tuesday's Earth Day celebrations and the Park Service's National Junior Ranger Day on April 26.

Reach Mail Tribune reporter Mark Freeman at 541-776-4470 or mfreeman@mailtribune.com.


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