Received this information via a USGS press release and we’d say our Federal government is showing signs of innovation!
“Holiday shoppers can pick up free gift wrap from the U.S. Geological Survey and California Geological Survey’s Maps and Publications Sales Office and enjoy a traveling exhibit about topographic mapping over the past 125 years.
To promote recycling and to save the colorful but space-consuming outdated topographic maps from landfill, the USGS-CGS MaPS office is giving them away for use as gift wrap. With their shades of green for forests, cities etched in red, and blue waterways, many of the maps are arrayed in holiday colors, and their large size, 24″ by 30″ offers a generous wrap for most holiday packages. The free maps will be available for pickup in person only, in limited quantities, through December 23rd.
The MaPS office, operated by the Department of Conservation’s California Geological Survey in partnership with the U.S. Geological Survey, is a unique “one-stop-shop” for state and federal natural-science information products and services. The MaPS office sells maps, books, GIS data and other digital products on a wide range of subjects, and has gift ideas for the person who has everything, the hard-to-please, and the just-plain-curious.
Just upstairs from the sales office, is a temporary exhibit on the history of topographic mapping. The exhibit traces the history and technological development of USGS topographic mapping for 125 years from1884 to 2009.
The map sales office and the exhibit are open Monday through Friday 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, in Building 3 on the USGS Menlo Park Campus, 345 Middlefield Road. The exhibit will be available through January 7, 2011.”