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PROCLAMATION <br />"Washington State Parks a Happy 100th Bin " <br />March 3 <br />WHEREAS, the Washington State Park system, one of the oldest, largest and most <br />beautiful state park systems in the country, turns 100 years old on March 19, 2013; and <br />WHEREAS, Washington established a statewide system of parks in 1913 as an <br />expression of deeply held values of a public access, adventure, recreation and <br />preservation; and <br />WHEREAS, nearly every county in the state is home to at least one of Washington's 117 <br />state parks, and almost every citizen in the state has a state park within an hour's drive <br />from home; and <br />WHEREAS, more than a third of the Washington state park system's 110,000 acres was <br />donated by citizens committed to a statewide system of parks; and <br />WHEREAS, Washington State Parks also protects a vast collection of natural, cultural <br />and historical resources that tell the story of our state, as a legacy to future generations; <br />and <br />WHEREAS, ours is one of the most ecologically diverse states in the nation, and <br />Washington State Parks offers a diverse array of recreational activities, including hiking, <br />biking, camping, boating, winter recreation and much, much more; and <br />WHEREAS, state parks, such as Lake Easton, John Mayne Pioneer Trail, Gingko <br />Petrified Forest, Olmstead Place, Iron Horse and Wanapum State Parks in (or near) <br />Kittitas County deliver public benefits that include health, education, environmental <br />stewardship and quality of life; and. <br />WHEREAS, Washington state parks receive approximately 40 million visits a year and <br />generate 30 million in tax receipts, also contributing significantly to the economic health <br />of our county and local communities; and <br />