J. L. BELL is a Massachusetts writer who specializes in (among other things) the start of the American Revolution in and around Boston. He is particularly interested in the experiences of children in 1765-75. He has published scholarly papers and popular articles for both children and adults. He was consultant for an episode of History Detectives, and contributed to a display at Minute Man National Historic Park.

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Thursday, November 03, 2016

Massachusetts National Parks Film Screening, 9 Nov.

On Wednesday, 9 November, the National Parks Conservations Association and the Pew Charitable Trusts will host a reception and screening of the film Massachusetts National Parks: Treasures Worth Protecting at the Old State House in Boston.

The invitation says:
The evening will include an original short film produced by the National Parks Conservation Association to get inspired and ensure our Revolutionary War national parks, which tell our nation’s earliest history, and park staff have the resources they need to take on the next hundred years.

This video highlights several examples of how the deferred maintenance and repair backlog threatens these treasured places and our shared American history.

Following the video, attendees will be invited to participate in an open discussion and Q&A session with some of the main characters featured in the video.
“Deferred maintenance” means putting off repairs and recommended upkeep because of budget limits. Or, as this government website explains it:
DM is maintenance that was not performed at the required intervals to ensure an acceptable facility condition to support the expected life cycle of an asset. It is the total of unfunded facilities deficiencies. These deficiencies require work to raise facilities and collateral equipment to a condition that meets accepted codes, laws and standards and to achieve service life expectancies.
Each year the National Park Service issues a report totaling what funds the agency budget would need to tackle all the deferred maintenance projects in all its parks. This is the 2015 report on parks in Massachusetts.
Over half of that total is at parks associated with the American Revolution, particularly Boston. Sometimes such projects can be put off for years, but in the end those repairs usually require even more spending than originally. In the meantime, facilities are closed, access is limited, and irreplaceable buildings suffer worse damage.

This film screening and discussion is scheduled for 5:30 to 7:30 P.M. There will be light refreshments and a demonstration by historical reenactors, and it’s all free and open to the public. The N.P.C.A. encourages fans and supporters of Revolutionary history in Massachusetts to come and bring friends. Use this site to R.S.V.P.

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