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Delaware North Companies Parks & Resorts Going Dark for Earth Hour

Yosemite National Park, The Queen Mary, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
 among locations turning off lights to support attention on climate change

BUFFALO, N.Y. (March 25, 2010) On Saturday, March 27, at 8:30 p.m. local time, many Delaware North Companies Parks & Resorts locations will join organizations, corporations, governments and hundreds of millions of people around the world to turn off their lights in support of Earth Hour, a global initiative aimed at drawing attention to the issue of climate change.
Earth Hour is an official program of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) that urges the turning off of all nonessential lights around the world for one hour. 2010 marks the third year of this event, which attracted nearly 80 million participants across the United States last year and nearly a billion around the world.
Delaware North Companies Parks & Resorts, a division of global hospitality and food service provider Delaware North Companies, operates lodging, restaurants, retail stores and other visitor services at distinct locations, including Yosemite National Park. The company also owns and operates its own lodging and resort properties and operates Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex for NASA.
Delaware North was the first U.S. hospitality company to have its environmental program, GreenPath®, registered to ISO 14001, the environmental management system standards of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). Delaware North Companies has received more than 40 regional, national and even international awards for its commitment to the environment and global sustainability.
The company’s support of Earth Hour will be on display across North America. Specific events include:
  • The Queen Mary, Long Beach, Calif.
The Long Beach skyline will look dramatically different on Saturday night as the staff of Delaware North shuts off the lights of The Queen Mary for Earth Hour. The ship, which has been docked at the Port of Long Beach since 1967, will offer guests and the community a chance to take part in a special Earth Hour candlelit reception from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. with “unplugged” entertainment, prizes, giveaways and complimentary organic appetizers and cocktails under the ship’s grand smokestacks on the Sports Deck. Exterior and nonessential interior lights will be extinguished.
No stranger to going dark, The Queen Mary was known as the “Grey Ghost” during her World War II service when she transported troops while camouflaged and with her lights off at night to avoid being spotted and fired upon by German submarines.
  • Yosemite National Park, California
Many Delaware North Companies operations in Yosemite National Park will likewise participate in Earth Hour. The historic Ahwahnee hotel has committed to turn off all chandelier lighting in the dining room, Great Lounge, elevator lobby and main lobby – a total of more than 700 bulbs. The Delaware North-owned Tenaya Lodge, just outside the park, will turn off all nonessential lighting and will encourage guests to turn off lights in their rooms.
  • Niagara Falls State Park, New York
Majestic Niagara Falls, known for its beauty during the day as well as its illumination at night, will go dark for the hour. The lighting of Niagara Falls was first attempted more than 140 years ago in 1860 to celebrate a visit by the Prince of Wales. The falls are now illuminated nightly until 10 p.m. January through April and until midnight the rest of the year. Delaware North operates food service and retail locations for Niagara Falls State Park.
  • Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Florida
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will turn off all lights that are not vital for safe working conditions, including darkening the famous Rocket Garden that showcases the massive Redstone, Atlas and Titan rockets that first put NASA astronauts in space, as well as the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo capsules. The visitor complex will promote participation through its Web site, social media and during daily tours of the grounds. On Saturday, every 60th guest will receive a Delaware North Companies GreenPath recycle shopping bag to signify the 60 minutes of power-free living.
  • Grand Canyon, Arizona
All three Delaware North-operated stores at Grand Canyon National Park will turn off their lights at 8:30 p.m. Stores will close 30 minutes early in preparation, and flyers will be handed to guests throughout the day explaining the significance of Earth Hour. 
  • HarrisonHot SpringsResort&Spa, British Columbia, Canada
At the Delaware North-owned and -operated Harrison Hot Springs Resort & Spa, outdoor roof lights, lobby lights and lights for the tree-lined driveways will be darkened. Lights in the storied Copper Room, Lakeside Café and Islands bar will be turned off, with all restaurants providing service by candlelight.
  • Gideon Putnam Resort, Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
Gideon Putnam Resort will place in every guest room letters that explain Earth Hour and ask guests to turn off their lights. The Roosevelt Baths & Spa will close during this time.
  • Yellowstone National Park, Montana
The kitchen at Holiday Inn West Yellowstone will close a half-hour early to offer guests a fondue dessert by candlelight, along with Earth Hour drink specials. The front desk will leave guests voice messages with a friendly reminder about Earth Hour, encouraging participation by turning off lights in their rooms.
Other Delaware North Companies Parks & Resorts locations planning to participate in Earth Hour events are Sequoia National Park in California; Delaware North’s central reservations office in Fresno, Calif.; and the Lodge at Geneva-on-the-Lake in Ohio. More information on Earth Hour can be found at