On a blustery winter day in Grand Teton National Park, conservationists, philanthropists, and park advocates gathered to celebrate the successful campaign to protect one square mile of land within park boundaries. This tract of land provides irreplaceable habitat for wildlife and stunning views to park visitors. The Antelope Flats parcel was previously owned by the State of Wyoming and was at risk of being auctioned off to the highest bidder and developed if not purchased by the National Park Service by the end of 2016.
Thanks to the efforts of Grand Teton National Park Foundation, National Park Foundation, a handful of organizations, and thousands of individual donors, this incredible piece of land will remain unchanged to benefit the wildlife and visitors to Grand Teton National Park. Private dollars matched $23 million from the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund. On December 12 when the deal was finalized, Grand Teton grew in size by 640 acres and $46 million was deposited into Wyoming’s Permanent School Trust Fund to benefit schoolchildren for many generations.
As the year of the NPS centennial comes to a close and with the success of this eight month campaign, we are feeling humbled, grateful, and inspired by all of our partners and supporters who shared our vision and helped us achieve this significant goal.
Wyoming public schoolchildren—the true beneficiaries of this effort—have a message of thanks and gratitude for everyone involved in protecting the Antelope Flats parcel: