Girl Scouts, Hornets' Nest Council and the Dale Earnhardt Foundation will unveil the monument sign at the entrance of the Dale Earnhardt Environmental Leadership Campus at Oak Springs.The ceremony will be open to the public on November 9 at 12:15pm at the entrance to the property at 1919 Turnersburg Highway, Statesville, NC 28625.
After a brief welcome and remarks, Teresa Earnhardt, Executive Director of the Dale Earnhardt Foundation, Sally Daley, CEO of Girl Scouts, Hornets' Nest Council and Monica McDaniel, Board President of Girl Scouts, Hornets' Nest Council will unveil the monument sign.
The Dale Earnhardt Foundation awarded a $2 million gift to the Girl Scouts, Hornets' Nest Council in support of the development of the Council's 700-acre property, which serves as a retreat for Girl Scouts and their leaders from throughout an eight-county Carolinas region.
In recognition of the gift, which is the largest ever granted by the foundation and the largest single gift ever received by the Hornets' Nest Council, the campus at Oak Springs will be named the Dale Earnhardt Environmental Leadership Campus in honor of the legendary NASCAR driver.
The foundation's grant will be used to help fund the ongoing development of the property, including the recently completed construction to create a 25-acre lake. The Girl Scouts retreat, which is located in Iredell County, features heavy forestation, diverse wildlife, broad open areas, natural water sources and rolling terrain. The property includes the former site of a skeet shooting range that was a long-time favorite of Dale Earnhardt's.
"Dale was an avid sportsman and outdoorsman; whether it was spending time at the Earnhardt Farm or traveling across the country on a hunt, he loved outdoor adventure," said Teresa Earnhardt. "We are proud to put Dale's name on a campus like this with its beautiful wooded environment, wildlife native to the area and such a strong program teaching young people the importance of respecting nature."
The Dale Earnhardt Foundation was created in 2002 with a goal to "CONTINUE THE LEGEND" of Dale Earnhardt, who won the NASCAR Winston Cup Championship seven times and who was elected to the inaugural induction class at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. During his storied career, he garnered a world-wide following of legions of fans who continue today to revere his contributions to the sport of racing. The Foundation's primary philanthropic focus is on children, education and wildlife/environmental preservation.
"All aspects of our mission will be part of the Dale Earnhardt Environmental Leadership Campus for generations to come," Teresa Earnhardt said. "The activities there will enable our children to make informed choices, teach them to care deeply about our environment and prepare them to be good stewards."
Girl Scouts, Hornets' Nest Council acquired the property in Iredell County in 2007, consolidating activities that had previously taken place at three other sites. The Council is implementing a long-range development program for the campus that has so far included infrastructure improvements, challenge courses, nature trails, archery range and Girl Scout villages that feature camping areas and cabins.
"This gift from The Dale Earnhardt Foundation is truly transformational for the 23,000 girls and adults in our footprint," said Sally Daley, CEO of the Council. "These funds will assure that we can continue to successfully pursue our development program, including the construction of our lake that will be the focal point of activities for Girl Scouts of all ages. The mission of the Dale Earnhardt Foundation and the goals of Hornets' Nest Council align ideally, which makes this signature gift all the more meaningful for our Girl Scouts and leadership volunteers," Daley continued. "We know that the many loyal fans of Mr. Earnhardt will be pleased to see how we are preserving the heritage of his career and interests outside of racing."
About The Dale Earnhardt Foundation The non-profit Dale Earnhardt Foundation was established in 2002 with a commitment to the philanthropic support of children, education and environmental/wildlife preservation. The goals of the foundation align with the passions of Dale Earnhardt, who was a seven- time champion of the NASCAR Winston Cup series and revered by racing fans for contributions to the sport of racing on and off the track. The vision of the Foundation is encapsulated by its tagline, "CONTINUE THE LEGEND." To learn more about The Dale Earnhardt Foundation, visit www.daleearnhardtinc.com/foundation.
About Girl Scouts Founded in 1912, Girl Scouts of the USA is the preeminent leadership development organization for girls with 3.2 million girl and adult members worldwide. Girl Scouts is the leading authority on girls' healthy development and builds girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place. Girl Scouts, Hornets' Nest Council serves more 23,000 girls and volunteers in eight counties of North and South Carolina, Anson, Cabarrus, Mecklenburg, Montgomery, Rowan, Stanly, Union and York (S.C.) counties. For more information on how to join, volunteer, reconnect, or donate to Girl Scouts, visit www.hngirlscouts.org.