Come join us on Saturday, September 10th at 8:45AM. Meet at the tool trailer in the parking lot. We will be working on Evergreen Falls with Rutland High School Cross Country team. Bring water we will supply gloves, tools and plenty of dirt.
Look for our new maps at the park and area businesses!
Calling all girls ages 8 to 11!!! Little Bella’s is coming to Pine Hill Park in Rutland the last week of July. Check it out and bring your buddies to this fantastic camp. Mom and dads please spread the word to any other parents who might have a little girl that would enjoy this camp!
Broken Handlebar now has an uphill option as well as a downhill only option. We are calling it Broken Handlebar South and North. Broken Handlebar South is the techy XC two way section and Broken Handlebar North is ONE WAY downhill. Both start at intersection 30A and come out at intersection 42. Thank you very much to this year YES plan groups who have made this possible.
We had great Annual meeting on Monday, March 28th. A group of 30+ members heard first hand about some of our plans for 2016, but more importantly a discussion session led to lots of great ideas. Hopefully we can move forward with some of the great suggestions and enthusiasm that was present in the room!
This year, the board tried a different approach with the meeting. Keith Wight gave a quick presentation of last year’s accomplishments:
Volunteer Days and Hours:
2015 Volunteer Days 57 days
2015 Volunteer Hours 2390 hours
Groups providing volunteer hours: Community Work Days, Fair Haven Girls on the Run, Youth Mountain Bike Group; RHS Cross Country Team; RHS YES Plan-6 Days; Youth Works-13 days; PHP individuals
The meeting then moved on to an open discussion of 2016 plans.
Upcoming programs in 2016:
- Women’s Mountain Bike Clinic
- Youth Mountain Bike Group
- Intermediate/Advanced Mountain Bike Clinic(new this year)
- Summer Sunset 5K Race
- Droopy Pedal Mountain Bike Race
- Senior Olympics Mountain Bike Race
- 10K Leaf Chase
- Nature Hikes with Tom Estill
- Little Bellas Mountain bike camp for girls
- Full Moon 5K race
- Expand Redfield Trails
- Broken Handlebar Extension
- New Pine Hill Park map
- Potential RRMC trail project
- Maintain and expand membership
- Sponsorship Ideas
- Tyvek maps
- Coasters with logos
The current PHP board has been working on redefining the goals for the organization and President Andy Shinn shared some of their thoughts. The board reached out to those present and to the overall membership for help in steering the group forward. In addition to the usual annual tasks like trail maintenance, the board is hoping to recruit folks to help with some new projects.
The partnership has developed a new logo and designs for coasters, t-shirts and plans to produce tyvek maps for next year. Much of the discussion centered around how we could increase awareness and enthusiasm for the work we do, and how we could translate that enthusiasm into more paid memberships and volunteers to help the board accomplish our goals.
Discussion Topics and Ideas:
- Ask if member? Do you want to be a member? At activities have a table or something to sign people up.
- Set up a membership table at the trail head on busy weekends
- Maps – good idea to make some money – Thanks to private landowners with permission
- Get coasters to local pubs and restaurants
- 59 paid members this year; where do we want to be next year? Membership drive?
- Get list from Cindi of 600+ emails to get them to sign up for Pine Hill Partnership.
- Think about Lower membership cost to increase numbers
- “Trails brought to you by Pine Hill Partnership” signs in park
- Does everyone know that Pine Hill Partnership exists? Most people think it is the City, but do not realize that Pine Hill Partnership actually maintains the park, Carriage and Redfield Trails
- Start promoting activities on Front porch forum – City, Rutland Town…
- Business card or similar item to hand out to visitors with Pine Hill Partnership info (hand out coasters?)
- Web site eventually will become pinehillpartnership.org – phasing out pinehillpark.org
- We need more social media presence – Instagram, Facebook, Front Porch Forum
- Partner with a store similar to EMS to bind together to provide discount to someone who pays a membership; example, Alpine Bike Shop
- Might need membership card ?
- List of local discounts available to members with a card (similar to Perk card)
- Trails are all the same and some users want a variation on trails – more difficult terrain. Make Broken Handlebar Extension be something more than just a roller. Optional routes giving the chance to take a more technical or rocky trail. Something different. Broaden the trail system.
- Raise ridership through the broadening of the trail system
- Mailing list on maintenance? People find out a week after the items happen.
- Post a list of tasks that need to be done; bring you own tools; Pick up and sign out tools somewhere
- Expectations for volunteer efforts, duties, time span – clear expectations will make people more likely to step up
- How things are presented is important – make it fun or at least sound fun; add something like a barbecue or ride or similar. Need someone to organize B-B-Que for a work day.
- Evening work times? Get more people for a shorter time. Need someone to step up and lead these groups.
- Put it out that we need X many people, leader, etc.
- Trail building 101? Teach some leaders how to do trail maintenance and lead a group.
- Short videos of how to clean a drainage ditch (or similar)
- Make the park more inviting – more important things that reporting dogs in park; make it fun and exciting
- Need help for what? Need more members, more people involved, not just trail work, but membership drive, marketing, social director
- Why are the trails closed? Educate as to why the trails are closed because people may not understand this especially given the mild winter.
After the discussion the final piece of business was to elect next year’s board of directors. Our board of directors for 2016 are: Joel Blumenthal, Andy Shinn, Keith Wight, Shelley Lutz, Claus Bartenstein, and Dave Jenne.
If you would like to help the board with any of our upcoming projects, or have some new ideas of your own, let us know about them! Please fill out the form below and we will be in touch soon.
Big thanks for your support this year in our continued efforts to make these area trails so special.
Keith Wight, Andrew Shinn, Joel Blumenthal, Dave Jenne, Claus Bartenstein, and Shelley Lutz
Board of Directors
Dear Pine Hill Partnership Members,
We had great 2016 year on the trails. Please join us at our annual meeting to enjoy light dinner fare, a short recap of 2016 and an introduction for 2017.
The meeting will start at 6pm, Monday, April 10th, at the Godnick Center at 1 Deer St. Rutland, VT.
We will have some excellent food including vegetarian fare to be consumed before the presentation. The meeting will begin with a short, required, business meeting. There will be a quick review of the 2016 accomplishments in the park and surrounding trails. Afterwards, we plan to have an extended question and answer period and hope you will contribute ideas and suggestions that can be incorporated into the future Pine Hill Park trail projects, the Pine Hill Partnership organization itself, and surrounding trail networks.
As our organization grows, we are looking for a more diversified group to serve on a couple of committees. In particular, we have a fundraising project for 2017 and would like to make a concerted effort to increase our paid membership rolls. We are hoping some folks can join us on this project.
We are also looking for additional board members. The board generally meets six to eight times a year and we are looking for people with a range of interests. Some people might have a passion for trail work while others might have a focus on growing Pine Hill Partnership membership or on strategic planning. If you are interested in being a board member, please send us a letter or email, of no more than 200 words by March 20th, 2017. Please include your qualifications and reasons why you would like to become actively involved in the Partnership and the park so that we may share it with the membership before the annual meeting.
Hope to see you there and big thanks for your support this year in our continued efforts to make these area trails so special.
Keith Wight, Andrew Shinn, Joel Blumenthal, Dave Jenne, Claus Bartenstein and Shelley Lutz
Board of Directors
The survey has been closed. Thank you for checking in.
RUTLAND: STRIDES & RIDES | By KIMBERLY GRIFFIN
Have you ever wondered how parks and other outdoor “natural” recreational venues are created? Often, as I walk among the trees and over the rocks on our region’s trails, I try to imagine the shovels and rakes, chainsaws and axes that many a hand must have wielded in order to create a path for my boots to traverse. And if I am really in a state of imagination, I try to trace the work even further back in time to the meetings and the sketches and the friendly — and sometimes not so friendly — arguments over land ownership and rights-of-way and fundraising and promotion that surely must have occurred long before a shovel ever touched the earth.
For many long-time Rutland City residents, the transformation of the area that is now Pine Hill Park is the one illustration of such work. Surely the same can be said for the Pittsford trails, the D & H trail, Northwood Park, and the many other recreational networks in our community.
As part of the work RAPAC is doing with the Rutland Regional Planning Commission under the Vermont Department of Health’s Healthy Community Design Grant, I was recently part of a meeting just like I imagined. Folks from the Pine Hill Partnership board, regional commissioners from Mendon and Hubbardton, and local citizens all came together on June 15 to pour over a map of the region; assessing existing trail networks, deciphering what plots of land are public or private, and coming up with dream trail connections to join towns or peaks, or just continue a trail past its current termination.
I was in awe of the knowledge each of these individuals carried about the woods and the back roads and the mountains in our region. As a group, there was seemingly no rock, no old bridge, no bend in the river that wasn’t familiar. And so, as we began to look dreamily at the potential for expanding and connecting the regional trail system, it felt as though the sky was the limit.
One such dream that is quickly becoming a reality, is the proposed Jim Jeffords State Forest. Linking Coolidge State Forest and Aitken State Forest in Mendon and Shrewsbury; the 100,000+ acre land conservation project will not only provide our region with over ten miles of hiking, mountain biking, skiing and snowmobile trails, it will also offer conserved habitat for Vermont wildlife such as moose, deer, turkey, bear, trout, songbirds and more, providing a resource to hunters, anglers and birdwatchers as well.
Acquisition of this land is currently being managed by the Trust for Public Land, along with a group of volunteers. A significant portion of private land has already been donated, and some funding to support more land procurement has been secured through private donation and public grants. The project team is currently working on a campaign to raise the remaining funds for the forest. For more information on the Jeffords State Forest, contact Kate Wanner at the Trust for Public Land: firstname.lastname@example.org.
While the Jeffords State Forest is one example of the beginnings of a new park/maintained intentional recreation space, it isn’t the only. June 15th’s meeting yielded quite a few new dreams; listing Class 4 roadways as potential mountain biking paths, revisiting old rail beds, and even highlighting Otter Creek as a water trail for canoeing and kayaking were all just bits of thought to be sorted, mapped and explored in the (hopefully near) future.
We are so fortunate to live in a state where opportunities for outdoor, exploratory recreation are virtually everywhere. I look forward to the continuance and further development of such opportunity for myself and generations to come.
Kimberly Griffin is the Director of the Rutland Area Physical Activity Coalition (RAPAC) whose mission is to promote and increase bicycle and pedestrian activity in Rutland County.
Pine Hill Partnership is a key component in keeping Pine Hill Park, Carriage Trail and Redfield trails in tip-top shape. Please consider making a contribution of any amount. We are a tax deductible 501 (c) 3 non-profit.