Huntersville native Sam Parker is the new Superintendent of Droop Mountain Battlefield State Park, Beartown State Park and the Greenbrier River Trail. Parker is enthusiastic about the position and is ready to share the parks with visitors from around the world. S. Stewart photo

Suzanne Stewart
Staff Writer

Growing up in Pocahontas County where there is a state park around nearly every corner, it’s easy to fall under the spell of nature and all it has to offer.

For Huntersville native Sam Parker, nature was a clear draw when it was time to choose a career, he just didn’t realize that draw would lead him to state parks.

“Natural resources was definitely a draw – something to teach kids and adults about the environment,” he said. “I graduated from Pocahontas County High School, and I was thinking of doing meteorology or something like that. I didn’t know what I was going to do.”

Parker earned a degree from Bluefield State College and worked as a health inspector in McDowell County for several years before he joined the state park system with a job at Panther State Forest, the most southern state forest in West Virginia.

He later…

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