DENVER, July 12, 2004 ? The Qwest Foundation, Qwest Communications? giving program, is donating $320,000 to the National Council of the Lewis & Clark Bicentennial to help commemorate the 200th anniversary of the Lewis & Clark expedition. This grant is the largest corporate gift ever received by the council, as well as the largest education donation given by the Qwest Foundation in 2004. The donation will help fund eight bicentennial signature events in seven states in Qwest?s local service territory; a Lewis & Clark educational campaign; and brochures, posters and other materials.

?The Lewis & Clark expedition is an unsurpassed tale of adventure and endurance, yet the bicentennial events must be more than a commemoration of a long-ago adventure,? said Robert R. Archibald, president of the National Council of the Lewis & Clark Bicentennial. ?This is an opportunity for all of us to evaluate the long chain of cause and effect that links past, present and future, and we?re thankful to have the support of the Qwest Foundation.?

The council selected communities from Virginia to Oregon to host its national heritage signature events, which began in January 2003 and extend through September 2006. Each community was chosen for its place in the expedition?s chronology, its historical relevance, cultural diversity, tribal involvement and geographic location.

?Lewis & Clark set out on an extraordinary journey more than 200 years ago, and Qwest will help make that journey come alive for kids today,? said Ric Padilla, vice president of corporate responsibility for Qwest. ?Education is the backbone of our communities, and we are proud to be a part of an organization that will enhance school curriculum, enrich the minds of children, and teach them about this important part of American history.?

Qwest is sponsoring eight of the 15 signature events on the Lewis & Clark trail, all taking place in states in Qwest?s local service territory.

Signature events in 2004:

  • Fort Calhoun/Omaha, Neb. July 31-Aug. 3
  • Oacoma and Chamberlain, S.D. Aug. 27-Sept. 26
  • Bismarck, N.D. Oct. 22-27

Signature events in 2005:

  • Fort Benton and Great Falls, Mont. June 1-July 4
  • Long Beach, Wash. to Cannon Beach, Ore. Nov. 11-25

Signature events in 2006:

  • Lewiston, Idaho June. 14-17
  • Billings, Mont. July 22-25
  • New Town, N.D. Aug. 17-20

The first signature event receiving Qwest support and funding is in Fort Calhoun/Omaha. This event commemorates Lewis & Clark's journey through Iowa and Nebraska and also honors the expedition?s First Tribal Council. Planned activities include living history demonstrations, American-Indian cultural areas, and educational interactive workshops designed for all ages and interests. For more information please visit

In addition to the National Council grant, the Qwest Foundation also will launch the ?Go Back to School with Lewis & Clark? educational campaign. This program will offer educators free CD-ROMs that will allow them to easily incorporate lesson plans on Lewis & Clark into their teaching. In addition, an educational campaign Web site will be launched to show visitors how much easier Lewis & Clark?s journey would have been if they would have had all of the communications technologies students have today.

The Qwest Foundation plans to distribute the educational CD-ROMs to organizations such as the Boys & Girls Club and the YMCA in signature event markets beginning in Omaha.

For more information on the Qwest Foundation please visit

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