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Build A Suspended Bridge

In mid-summer we will be assisting in the building of a 100+ foot suspended bridge over the Hockanum River (think Indiana Jones).

The location is across the street from the Water Treatment Plant on Route 74. It is the site of the old trolley line and will directly connect the Vernon Trail System with that in Ellington.

The project will be lead by Dave Smith, Vernon Town Engineer, who will supply the engineering expertise while we supply the labor. It will be done over several weekends.

Construction will be filmed in partnership with the Community Voice Channel and will be released some time after the expected Labor Day completion.

CT Trail Census

The Vernon Greenways Volunteers are participating in a state wide census collection of data from 15 multiuse trails. We are responsible for the Vernon section of the Hop River Trail. There is as an Infrared Data Counter on the trail between the Church Street parking lot and Phoenix Street that is recording as trail users pass. We are inspecting that counter twice a month to insure it is operating properly. We will ultimately be doing interviews of trail users to understand age, gender, residence, and economic impacts.

The goal is to better understand who is using the multi-use trails, when, why and by what means. Information can be used to educate trail user groups, administrators, state and local government agencies and the general public about trails. Ultimately, the information gathered will be used to develop programs and facilities that will provide a better product for the users, information for administrating entities and create an economic impact for the town.

Vernon Rails to Trails Mural Dedication

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On Saturday June 4th (Trails Day) the dedication of the mural at the Route 84 underpass of the Rockville Extension of the Rail Trail took place. Before the dedication Middle School Epoch Art Students and one of the eight contributing local artists presented art displays.

Speakers at the dedication included: Don Bellingham, Project Director/Vernon Greenways Volunteers Lead ; Mayor Daniel Champaign; Dave Smith, Pratt & Whitney Executive; Sherri Nevins, Vernon Middle School Art Teacher/Epoch Art Program founder, and Jeff Slobodien, Lead Artist.

This was the culmination of one and 1/2 years of planning by the Mural Committee (Don Bellingham; Sherri Nevens; Jeff Slobodien; Sandra Justin, The Vernon Arts Commission, and Michelle Hill, Vernon Youth Services) and one year of execution by the artists. The project was funded by a $5,000 grant from Pratt & Whitney.

Beverages and dessert items were served post dedication. The ceremony was attended by approximately 50 people. This area had been abused by obscene and objectionable material graffiti for years and the dedication plaque says it best “Art Transforms an Abused Space”.

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Vernon Greenways Volunteers In Action

The following photos will give you an idea of the type of tasks the Vernon Greenways Volunteers undertakes. Our season begins in the Spring and continues into October.

Click on the images for larger size.

Spring cleanup at the Warren Avenue Planting. One of the eight we maintain on the Rail Trail.
Spring cleanup at the Warren Avenue Planting. One of the eight we maintain on the Rail Trail.
Trail Maintenance Team repairs erosion on Rail Trail near Maple Avenue.
Trail Maintenance Team repairs erosion on Rail Trail near Maple Avenue.
Weed Whacking Team working on Dart Hill North Hiking Trail behind Vernon Gardens.
Weed Whacking Team working on Dart Hill North Hiking Trail behind Vernon Gardens.
Beetlemania 2012.
“Beetlemania – We annually inspect trees adjacent to the Rail Trail to see if there is any damage caused by the Asian Longhorned Beetle or Emerald Ash Borer.
Removing garlic mustard, an invasive, from Dart Hill South Park's Stone Dust Trail.
Removing garlic mustard, an invasive, from Dart Hill South Park’s Stone Dust Trail.
Install footings prior to relocation of bridge in background to its new site.
Install footings prior to relocation of bridge in background to its new site.
Move an eighteen foot five hundred pound bridge to a new site on the Hockanum River Linear Park Trail.
Move an eighteen foot five hundred pound bridge to a new site on the Hockanum River Linear Park Trail.
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