Preparations underway for the Eighth Annual John Muir Golf Tournament

Event Date: Friday, June 4, 2004

Golf Carts

As the weather gets warmer and summer approaches, we know that certain events cannot be far away. The flowers are blooming, the birds are chirping, and the time is coming. for the annual John Muir Golf Tournament!

The John Muir Golf Tournament, an American/Scottish corporate event, jointly sponsored by The New York City Department of Parks & Recreation and The American-Scottish Foundation in partnership with The Friends of Van Cortlandt Park and American Golf, has grown in popularity as a result of its "scramble" format, which encourages participation at all levels, and its informal nature which encourages networking among participants. The event is known for its good food, drink, entertainment and fellowship. The Tournament supports truly worthy projects that provide meaningful summer employment to New York City youth. The proceeds of the previous tournaments have made it possible for over sixty school children to receive paid summer employment.

Working under the supervision of the Friends of Van Cortlandt Park, young workers built the John Muir Trail in 2001, and now continue to improve and maintain it. The Trail honors John Muir, the Scots born naturalist and environmentalist, who, among other notable achievements, is Father of the U.S. National Park Service and Founder of the Sierra Club.

The Trail is an important educational tool both inside and outside of the classroom, and is accessible in "virtual" format on the Parks & Recreation's website at It is also an extension of Van Corlandt Park's Nature Center providing learning experiences in the field for both adults as well as children.

Since its development the Trail has been marked twice, over 300 shrubs and bushes have been planted, 400 feet of vines and weeds have been removed, and 10 tons of topsoil has been placed in various areas to prevent soil erosion. This year's ambitious plans to broaden the scope of the project in the Van Cortlandt Park include hiring college and high school students to participate in a year-round Environmental Education Internship, working around the Park on projects such as horticultural work, and providing needed capital funding for Trail and horticultural improvements in the Park.

On April 22, 2003, "Earth Day", The American-Scottish Foundation presented a $5,000 check to Parks & Recreation and will do so again this year. Last year's donation represented the proceeds of the 2002 tournament ensuring that five additional youths could benefit from the program. At the Trail's dedication, one of the children who participated in the project spoke eloquently of his experience working on the Trail and of the important skills he had acquired as a result. Another significant by-product of their summer experience is that five of the participants are now enrolled in college; an aspiration that they had not entertained until joining the program.

Participation on June 4th is encouraged even for non-golfers. Non-golfers are cordially invited to join the players, their spouses and guests for the post-tournament Reception and Awards Dinner. They can also participate in an afternoon program of events that includes riding at Van Cortlandt Stables, a guided tour of historic Van Cortlandt Mansion, and, of course, a guided tour of the John Muir Trail.

To find out more or to request an application, call Heather Bain at 212-605-0266 or View the Online Invitation.

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