Together, we make a difference in our parks

(Want to learn more about how you can support our parks? Click here and easily schedule a virtual chat with Jessica Barnes, our Director!)

Our Outer Banks national parks are a vital part of this unique community. They protect the nature, history and spirit of freedom you think of when you make your way here each year.

Outer Banks Forever is the official nonprofit partner of our Outer Banks national parks. We help you make an impact by raising funds and awareness for park projects and programs that are only possible with your partnership.

Below you’ll find out current list of projects and programs you can support to help make our OBX national parks more accessible and create new ways for you to experience them.


Current Projects:

New Projects and Programs

The projects listed below will only be possible with your support! Your gift today will help us reach new audiences with the stories from our parks, and create new ways to experience them on-site and from home. We are working closely with our park leadership to implement these projects over the next two years.

Adopt A Sea Turtle Nest (Stay tuned for the opening of the 2022 season!)

One of the most awe-inspiring reasons we all love Cape Hatteras National Seashore is that its pristine beaches are a perfect home for our favorite sea turtle friends. You can help us protect and enhance this special place by symbolically adopting your very own sea turtle nest! Learn more here.

Views From Your Parks: Webcam Project

In partnership with the Outer Banks Visitor’s Bureau and Surfline, you can help bring your park’s amazing views right into your home by helping install webcams on the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, Wright Brothers Memorial and Waterside Theater at Fort Raleigh.

We installed the first webcam on the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse in April 2021! Click here for the incredible view from the top.

Remaining funding needed: $4,000

 

 

Expanding Digital Learning at Wright Brothers National Memorial

You helped expand our park’s digital learning program to include a new online video series, live in-classroom virtual field trips and new digital partnerships with other aviation focused parks including the National Aviation Heritage Area and Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historic Park!

Project fully funded!

Artist in Community

Support local and national artists in creating art inspired by our OBX national parks during two 4-week residencies each year. They will also host events for you to learn new art techniques and inspire our community.

Funding needed: $5,500

 

 

Aviation Trail Through Time

From the first flight to our current pursuit of space exploration, you can help tell the story of the progress we’ve made since two brothers took flight on the sandy dunes of Kitty Hawk. Your support will install 10 interpretive panels along the walkway from the First Flight Boulder to the base of Big Kill Devil Hill at Wright Brothers National Memorial.

Funding needed: $25,000 (Phase 1)

 

 

Kayak Launch at Oregon Inlet

Your support has helped build a mobility-friendly kayak launch at the Oregon Inlet Fishing Center that provides a safe way for non-motorized water sport enthusiasts to experience the beautiful Pamlico Sound!

Project fully funded! 

Pathways to Your National Parks

Our Outer Banks national parks provide unique ways to experience the natural beauty and history of our island community. Whether you enjoy walking, running, or cycling, we need your support to help build new, paved multi use paths in all three parks that will create new and safer ways for you and your family to explore these special places. Plans for these new paths are still in development but will be located at:

  • Phase 1: Cape Hatteras Lighthouse
  • Phases 2-3:
    • Bodie Island Lighthouse
    • Fort Raleigh National Historic Site (connecting to existing community paths)
    • Wright Brothers National Memorial (connecting to existing community path)

This project will be completed in phases over several years, starting with the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse path that will connect Route 12 to the old lighthouse site and current lighthouse site.

Estimated funding needed for full project: $1.7 million for four multi-use paths over 5-7 years. (Grant and matching opportunities are being explored)

 

 

Ongoing Programs

Adopt A Pony

If you love Ocracoke Island, then you’ve likely stopped by to visit with the island’s most popular residents, the Ocracoke Banker ponies! Now, you can symbolically adopt one of these amazing creatures and help fund their care and maintenance.

Open OutDoors for Kids Field Trips

Each year, students across North Carolina learn about the state’s history, including the important stories of Native American peoples, English exploration, the Freedmen’s Colony on Roanoke Island and the Wright brothers’ first flight, which the Outer Banks national parks preserve.

In October 2021, Cape Hatteras National SeashoreFort Raleigh National Historic Site and Wright Brothers National Memorial were collectively awarded an Open OutDoors for Kids grant of $7,400 from the National Park Foundation. The goal of the grant program is to provide K-12 students, educators and families with access to national parks around the country through both in-person and virtual learning opportunities. The Open OutDoors for Kids grant funds will be used to cover transportation costs for field trips for students at 12 Title I schools in Currituck County, Dare County and Tyrrell County.

We are thrilled to be able to provide this opportunity for teachers to get their students out of the classroom to learn about and experience the unique history and environment found in our Outer Banks national parks — something a surprising number of students from these local counties have never done.

While field trips will be tailored to current academic curricula for fourth grade students who are learning about North Carolina history, all students who are attending Title I schools in Currituck County, Dare County and Tyrrell County are eligible to participate in field trips to the parks. Schools that are interested in scheduling virtual or in-person field trips to the Outer Banks national parks may email Jonathan Polk, Supervisory Park Ranger of Interpretation and Education at Cape Hatteras National Seashore (Hatteras Island District) at jonathan_polk@nps.gov or may email obx_interpretation@nps.gov.