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Friends' Day is September 10

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The Beatles refrain is true, “I get by with a little help from my friends.” On Saturday, September 10, the Mast Store will be hosting Friends in each of its home communities that have the awesome responsibility of taking care of resources that locals and visitors enjoy every day. At the end of the day, each of our store locations will donate 10% of the day’s sales to support our local conservation partners.

In Valle Crucis, Boone, Hendersonville, and Asheville, volunteers from the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation will be on hand at the stores to discuss their activities to enhance the visitor experience along America’s Favorite Scenic Drive, the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Foundation is the Parkway’s primary fundraising arm, and it works with that National Park Service to protect the park’s natural, historical and cultural resources, and to maintain visitor facilities on the Parkway.

Volunteers from the Friends of the Smokies will be at the Mast Stores in Waynesville and Knoxville. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited park in the United States. It is also one of the most bio diverse places on earth, with over 100,000 species already cataloged and more discovered every year. The Friends of the Smokies work with the National Park Service to preserve and protect the park by raising funds and public awareness and by providing volunteers for needed projects.

In addition, Patagonia, our friend that is like-minded when it comes to getting people outdoors and taking care of our environment, will also be supporting these groups with their own donation. In addition to Mast Store donating 10% of the day’s sales to our Friends, Patagonia will donate $2,500 directly to Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation and Friends of the Smokies on our behalf in celebration the 100th Anniversary of our National Parks. Thank you, Patagonia!

Water is one of the necessities of life. It is also necessary for commerce and beauty. In Greenville, volunteers from Friends of the Reedy River will help share their initiatives on behalf of this beloved body of water. This conservation group works to protect the environment while supporting practical economic development. Their efforts over the last many years have been focused on the Saluda-Reedy River watershed resulting in the Reedy River’s health improving markedly. Part of the Swamp Rabbit Trail follows the Reedy.

Connecting the state from the foothills and mountains to the ocean is the dream of the Palmetto Conservation Foundation. The goal of the trail is to provide a route for people to explore South Carolina’s mountain ridges, forests, towns – both big and small, history, local beauty, and local color along a hiking and bicycling path.  With help from the PCF, the Finish the Trail Campaign has seen more than 350 miles of the Palmetto Trail completed across 14 counties. Volunteers will be on hand at the Columbia Store to share more about how you can get involved with their invaluable work.

In Winston-Salem, one of the oldest settlements in the western part of the state, Old Salem Museum and Gardens celebrates its 250th year this year.  They offer a glimpse of early American history with a walk through the structures, gardens, and streets of this Moravian settlement. Old Salem Museum and Gardens keep the past alive, well, and closely tied to today with their interpreters, hands-on programs, and meticulous maintenance of historic structures.

At the end of the day on September 10, the Mast Store will make a donation of 10% of the day’s sales to support these groups and the work they are doing in our communities. Throughout this week, we'll take a look at our individual community partners for Friends' Day.