From left: Kent Wimmer, Lynn Cherry, Florida State Parks Director Chuck Hatcher, Julia Gill Woodward, Lisa Shipley, Carlton Ward Jr.
More than 70 attendees, including producer Carlton Ward Jr. participate in second film screening and environmental discussion panel
PANAMA CITY BEACH, FLORIDA, UNITED STATES, December 1, 2023 /EINPresswire.com/ — The Florida State Parks Foundation and Live Wildly on Thursday welcomed more than 70 people, including former state representative and Panama City mayor Scott Clemons and Panama City Beach city council member Michael Jarman, for a screening of the feature film “Path of the Panther” at Camp Helen State Park.
Following the film, Florida State Parks Foundation board member Lynn Cherry hosted a discussion panel with conservation photographer and film producer Carlton Ward Jr., Live Wildly CEO Lisa Shipley, Foundation CEO Julia Gill Woodward and Kent Wimmer, the senior northwest Florida representative of Defenders of Wildlife.
The panel discussed the Florida Wildlife Corridor, the significance of land conservation in northwest Florida and how Florida’s award-winning state parks play a crucial role in providing habitat and safe passage for the state’s imperiled wildlife.
Thursday’s screening was the second in a series hosted by the Foundation and Live Wildly. The first was held in October at Wekiwa Springs State Park in Altamonte Springs. Both parks are included among the 75 Florida state parks located within the Florida Wildlife Corridor.
“In addition to being a lot of fun, these screenings have provided a great opportunity for people to gather in some of Florida’s most beautiful natural spaces and learn about the crucial conservation efforts in motion to protect wildlife and their habitats,” Woodward said. “Wekiwa Springs and Camp Helen are unique and excellent hosts, and we are looking forward to holding similar events in 2024.”
The evening also included a Q&A session with the audience, with topics primarily focused on individual advocacy and public outreach for environmental and wildlife-related issues.
“Live Wildly was created to engage the public and expand awareness about wildlife corridors and the immeasurable benefits that they provide,” Shipley said. “‘Path of the Panther’ has been an incredible tool in support of this mission, and being able to bring passionate supporters together with one of the film’s driving creative forces at a beautiful state park is very special.”
The Florida State Parks Foundation, founded in 1993 as Friends of Florida State Parks and renamed in 2018, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation whose mission is to support and help sustain the Florida Park Service, its 175 award-winning parks and trails, local Friends groups and more than 20,000 park volunteers.
It does this through programs that preserve and protect state parks, educate visitors about the value of state parks, encourage community engagement and active use of state parks, and advocacy. The volunteer Board of Directors represents private and public sectors as well as local and statewide interests. This event was completed through the Florida State Parks Foundation Services LLC, which is a limited liability company affiliate of the Foundation.
Live Wildly is a public visibility campaign to raise awareness of the Florida Wildlife Corridor; educate citizens on its value and importance to the state’s economy, ecology and overall way of life; and, to help jump-start a movement for its long-term protection.
Live Wildly and the Florida State Parks Foundation invite individuals, artists, corporations, and organizations who share their vision to join this transformative partnership and support the critical work being done to safeguard and protect wild Florida.
Florida State Parks Foundation
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