Yosemite, Ca — Hundreds attended a ceremony Friday celebrating the restoration of the historic Tunnel View Overlook in Yosemite National Park.
“The rededication of this famous site shows that we can rise to the challenge of reinvigorating our national parks with stunning results,” said Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne. “It is our hope that projects and vistas like this will inspire support and interest in preserving our national parks.”
$3.3 million rehabilitation was funded by a $1.8 million donation from the non-profit Yosemite Fund and $1.5 million from the National Park Service as part of the President’s Centennial Initiative. Friday’s celebration was modeled after the opening of the site in 1933, with vintage automobiles, an honor guard and a blessing by members of the Tuolumne Me-Wuk tribe.
“Tunnel View is 75-years-old this year and it has never looked better,” said Park Superintendent Mike Tollefson. “It’s a fitting way to celebrate the approaching 100th anniversary of the National Park Service and the 20th anniversary of the Yosemite Fund.”
The Tunnel View Overlook Rehabilitation Project features a larger and safer viewing area, wheelchair accessibility, educational exhibits, a rebuilt trailhead and revamped parking areas.
“This view truly depicts America the Beautiful,” said Yosemite Fund President Bob Hansen. “The improvements reestablish the promise of inspiration to those who visit Tunnel View.”
Written by BJ Hansen