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Mt. Philo State Park Selected as a 2023 Leave No Trace Spotlight

Press Release
For Immediate Release – October 9, 2023

Chloe Lindahl, Leave No Trace Communication Specialist
Leave No Trace

Lisa Thornton, Stewardship Forester – Rutland
Vermont Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation

Mt. Philo State Park Selected as a 2023 Leave No Trace Spotlight
1 of 20 Sites, Nationwide, Chosen for Community Conservation Initiative

Montpelier, Vermont - The Leave No Trace organization has selected Mt. Philo State Park as a 2023 Spotlight site. As outdoor areas all over the country are being impacted by record use, this new initiative from Leave No Trace shines a light on communities rising to meet this challenge with multi-day, onsite education and stewardship programs. From October 13-15 a Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Team will be in Charlotte, VT at Mt. Philo State Park to work with the community and local land agencies to deliver Leave No Trace education as well as to partner on restoration and stewardship projects.

Sites are nominated for the Leave No Trace Spotlight initiative by local land agencies or community groups. The diverse sites chosen in 2023 span the country, each with unique environmental challenges. The goal of the initiative is to equip each Spotlight area with relevant Leave No Trace tools that address the impacts the site is facing and ultimately, to foster healthy lands and people.

“The Spotlight initiative highlights the great steps a community can take to protect an area that they cherish,” according to Dana Watts, the Executive Director of Leave No Trace. This year, the Airbnb Community Fund has made this program possible through a generous grant. Watts continues, “The three-day Spotlight features workshops for stakeholders and Leave No Trace education for the public at large. It also will include opportunities for the community and our Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Team, who will be there conducting the initiative, to roll up their sleeves together at the Spotlight site and get some work done.” 

"We are thrilled to have been selected as a Leave No Trace Spotlight site," expressed Danielle Fitzko, Commissioner of the Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation. "Mt. Philo is a jewel in our State Park system, drawing thousands of visitors each year. This recognition underscores our unwavering dedication to creating an inclusive and enjoyable experience that aligns seamlessly with the Leave No Trace ethos."

The following events are free and open to the public and we encourage people of all ages to attend. For more information visit   

Saturday, October 14th: Stewardship Event – Invasive Species Removal: 9 am - 11 am
Join Leave No Trace and Mt. Philo State Park staff and partners for a fun volunteer day and stewardship project. The projects will include removing invasive species to help conserve native plants and vegetation. Volunteers will be introduced to Leave No Trace and learn more about how to protect this popular and special park.  Meet at the Mt. Philo State Park Summit Lodge project hub.

Sunday, October 15th: Guided Historical Hike: 8 am -10 am
As part of the Leave No Trace Spotlight, enjoy a guided hike about the cultural and natural history of Mt. Philo State Park while also learning how Leave No Trace principles can help protect the special values of this park. All skill levels are welcome for this 2-mile, moderate hike led by a local park expert.

About Leave No Trace

Using the power of science and research, education for all, and stewardship to support and protect nature, Leave No Trace is on a mission to ensure a sustainable future for the outdoors and the planet. The Spotlight program is the newest education offering from Leave No Trace. Additional support for 2023 Spotlights comes from the Airbnb Community Fund. Learn more at:

  • Facebook: @LeaveNoTraceCenter
  • Instagram: @LeaveNoTraceOrg 
  • Twitter: @LeaveNoTrace 
  • LinkedIn: @LeaveNoTrace

About VT Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation | State Parks Division

The State Parks Division provides outdoor recreation facilities primarily through Vermont’s very popular state parks. The Division manages 52 Vermont state parks each offering high-quality opportunities for outdoor recreation compatible with the conservation of Vermont’s natural resources and aesthetics, providing environmental education and information, and supporting the economies and values of local communities. State parks promote, operate, and maintain a large and complex system of conserved lands, as well as both historic and modern facilities that are enjoyed by well over half a million visitors every year.