News Release Date: April 23, 2014
The National Park Service (NPS) and Confluence Project have entered into a new, innovative partnership to enhance programming at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site. The agreement will create educational events annually at the Fort, including Confluence's Gifts from Our Ancestors program. This program connects Native American artists and storytellers with students to create hands-on projects that explore the rich history, culture and ecology of the Columbia River system.
"This is an excellent opportunity to enhance both organizations' shared mission to be catalysts for discovery," said Colin Fogarty, executive director of the Confluence Project. "Our move to the national park puts us closer to the Confluence Land Bridge, one of our six sites, and gives us the opportunity to raise our visibility with the 750,000 annual visitors to the national park."
"We are ecstaticwith our newly expanded partnership with the Confluence Project. Through this partnership, our community, as well as the visitors who come from across the nation and around the world, will have the opportunity to experience more educational programs, exhibits, and tours right here in our national park," added Tracy Fortmann, Superintendent, Fort Vancouver National Historic Site.
Confluence's Gifts from Our Ancestors is an arts-based educational program that currently reaches more than 3,000 underserved K-12 rural students each year. The Confluence Project will move into the historic Pilots' Headquarters Building adjacent to Pearson Air Museum.
The Confluence Project's mission is similar to that of the Center for Columbia River History, which occupied space in the historic Headquarters Building for a number of years. This agreement includes the additional element of an on-site public service focus. The partnership between the NPS and Confluence also includes the development of public exhibits that will explore the history of the national historic site.
About Confluence Project:
The Confluence Project is catalyst for discovery. We create spaces that promote moments of insight about the confluence of culture, history and ecology along the Columbia River system. We share stories of this river through six public art installations with acclaimed artist Maya Lin, educational programs, community engagement and a rich digital experience.
Four of the six planned sites have been completed and annually serve more than 1.7 million visitors at Cape Disappointment State Park (Ilwaco, WA), Vancouver Land Bridge (Vancouver, WA), Sandy River Delta (Troutdale, OR), Sacajawea State Park (Pasco, WA). Chief Timothy Park (Clarkston, WA) will be completed in 2015 and Celilo Park (The Dalles, OR) in 2016.
About Fort Vancouver National Historic Site:
Fort Vancouver National Historic Site, a unit of the National Park Service, is the heart of the Vancouver National Historic Reserve. The Vancouver National Historic Reserve brings together a national park, a premier archaeological site, the region's first military post, an international fur trade emporium, one of the oldest operating airfields, the first national historic site west of the Mississippi River, and a waterfront trail and environmental center on the banks of the Columbia River. The partners of the Reserve teach visitors about the fur trade, early military life, natural history, and pioneers in aviation, all within the context of Vancouver's role in regional and national development. The Reserve's vast array of public programs -- including living history events, cultural demonstrations, exhibits, active archaeology, and other special events and activities -- create a dynamic, fun, and unique tourist destination for people of all ages.
As the fur trade-era depot and headquarters for the Hudson's Bay Company's Columbia Department, did you know that over 61,000 animal pelts were shipped from Fort Vancouver to England in 1843 alone? This and many other stories are interpreted at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site. More...