A few years ago, Richard Louv’s book, “Last Child in the Woods,” alerted us to the changing lives of Americans and our children, the increasingly plugged-in state of youth and the newly defined “nature deficit disorder.”

His frightening study is being echoed in more and more mental health research, and by medical professionals bemoaning obesity and diabetes as the legacy of changing life habits. We must offer inviting ways to get our population out of doors.

Visiting national parks is a wonderful way to build family values, to teach what is important, and to cultivate a sense of beauty and adventure. If we in Maine can add one more great national park for families to imprint on and learn to love, a place where they can experience unplugged wildness and the peace of being in a quiet place, we will have helped the world, our country, and our state of Maine. In the shadow of Gov. Percival Baxter, we can leave a lasting legacy of a lifetime.

Wilderness is fast dwindling and fragmenting, even in Maine, the most heavily forested state of the Lower 48. The offer we are getting from Elliotsville Plantation Inc. is an incredibly generous one, and an opportunity to save a fleeting landscape and create a nest egg for the residents of Maine and their children.

Cloe Chunn


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