America’s Great Outdoors Youth Listening Session

“It’s a recognition, passed down from one generation to the next, that few pursuits are more satisfying to the spirit than discovering the greatness of America’s outdoors.” 
-President Barack Obama, April 16, 2010

Thanks for deciding to lend your voice to this important opportunity for the Hudson River Valley! Your thoughts and ideas will enable the community-based outdoor recreation, water protection and land conservation needs of our Hudson River Valley to be better understood by our Federal Government.

Please read the following information carefully. It is important that we are all clear on the schedule and procedures the day of the event.

Information Included Below:

-General Initiative and Event information including directions and the Department of the Interior’s website

-RSVP Information

– Transportation Information

– Clearwater contacts

– Four Questions for the Youth Listening Session (please review these with your group!)

Initiative Information:

This Spring, President Obama called on members of his cabinet to create the Great American Outdoors Initiative (“GAOI”), and the subsequent “Listening Sessions,”  in order to hear from the people who matter most to the future of this nation– its citizens and even more importantly, its youth! Much like Clearwater and its amazing partners, the Obama Administration feels that we can only work towards water protection, land conservation and improving access to our great outdoors by listening to you– the next generation of environmental leaders– and engaging and empowering you in this process from the beginning, to ensure your voices are heard at the end.

 For more information on this initiative, please visit

Event Information: 

 Who:             YOU! Young people from the Hudson Valley and River Communities

What:              A discussion on Hudson Valley’s Great Outdoors

When:             Thursday, August 5th, from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m.

Where:            Henry A. Wallace Visitor and Education Center

                          Home of FDR and FDR Presidential Library

                   4079 Albany Post Road Hyde Park, New York 12538

(Directions: )


RSVP Information:

To ensure that they have sufficient space for everyone, GAOI Officials are  encouraging you to inform them by Tuesday, August 3 if you are able to attend one or both (see below for information regarding the general session on August 6) of these listening sessions.  You can do so by sending an email with your name, email address, and telephone number to


Transportation Information:


If you are unable to get to the FDR Library in Hyde Park, NY, on your own, Clearwater is arranging limited transportation from the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum (get directions here) to the FDR library. We will also offer return transportation from FDR to the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum. If you are driving to the Museum, please park at the Poughkeepsie Train Station or one of the local municipal lots right next to the museum.

Please email if you need transportation to the FDR library from the Poughkeepsie Train Station at 2pm.  

We are leaving the Poughkeepsie Train Station promptly at 2pm and will be returning to the train station no later than 6pm, after the Listening Session.

If you are coming from the south, i.e., Peekskill, Yonkers, Croton, New York City, etc., MetroNorth is a great option– simply take the train to the Poughkeepsie Station, the last stop on the MetroNorth line. 

Click here for a brief intro to the Initiative , a question template and comments from previous sessions around the country.


Clearwater Contacts:

Jeff Rumpf-

Heidi Kitlas-

Dave Conover-

Eileen Newman-


August 6th General Listening Session:

 There will be a general America’s Great Outdoors Listening Session the following day, Friday, August 6th from 9:00 a.m. to noon at Marist College Student Center in Poughkeepsie, NY. 

 (Directions at

Youth are encouraged to attend both the general listening session from 9:00 a.m. – noon at Marist College and this youth event.

Click here for more information regarding the August 6th event at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY.


This event is hosted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Department of the Interior, and the Environmental Protection Agency.

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