Come and join us on Shoreline Greenway Trail!
Happenings this month
Chet and Judy will be leading 5th grade students from Walsh Intermediate School on a walks at Pine Orchard Birch Road on 4 Thursdays in April and May.
Besides our First Saturday Walks, we are planning some exciting upcoming events including: Connecticut Trails Day (6/1); Branford Festival (6/15); CT Parks Centennial Bike Sojourn (8/22); Run the Gauntlet (9/29). So stay tuned to the website for details!
April 13 Branford River Clean-up – Every year volunteers work together to clean up unsightly debris along the Branford River. This year we would like to thank Derek Faulkner, Sean Barry and Pete Davis!
Clean-up after Sandy - After the storm, two Branford trails were completely blocked by fallen and dangerously leaning trees. Not wasting any time, Pete Peterson brought in a contractor to clear the trail from Pine Orchard Rd to the Birch Rd trail head; the trail along Tilcon Rd near the western end of the Trolley Trail and our trail head sign there. The total length cleared was about 3,000 feet. It took the contractor a full day, with crew and equipment, to simply allow passage. There still remains a great deal of unsightly tree trash alongside the trails to be removed and chipped. We will be working on that this spring. Special thanks to you Pete!
April 5 – 7 Table at Zanes Big Wheel Sale - It was so nice meeting you all at Zanes! Thanks to the Branford team, Ginny Raff (Madison) and Milton Charlton (Guilford) for standing outside in the cool breeze answering questions about Shoreline Greenway Trail. Now that you know about it, come and join us on the trail!
Profile of the Month – Peg Stamp
Peg joined the Branford Team of the Shoreline Greenway Trail in 2010, and she has been busy ever since. Peg has brought her project management skills to our team, and has taken over development of the important connection with East Haven at the Farm River and moving east toward Alps Road. She has also become our unofficial treasurer, keeping track of funding, and she keeps her eye out for grant opportunities.
Peg says that she has always lived near the water: Washington, D.C., Bristol, RI, Milford, and finally Branford, where she has settled down for 35 years. She has also always loved the outdoors, and is proud to have been among the last recipients of the Curved Bar, one of the Girl Scouts’ highest honors.
Peg is retired from Aetna where she worked as a project manager. She also spent some time with the Aetna Foundation where she worked on grant giving. She is married to Dave Stamp, who volunteers with Branford’s SGT Trail Management team. Dave and Peg love to travel, hopping into their airplane for flights over the northeast. One of their favorite activities is to fly to an airport such as Block Island’s, have lunch and a stroll, and then fly back. Recent long distance travel (on public airlines) has included Spain and Hawaii. She also enjoys spending time with their daughter, Yvonne, son-in-law, Peter, and their two granddaughters: Margaux and Chloe, who are noted by SGT for their cheerful help with Run the Gauntlet last September.
Peg’s energy and expertise have contributed greatly to Branford’s progress in the last few years. We are fortunate and grateful to have her help.
We hope everyone had a healthy and happy holiday season!
Like many of you , we’ve been cleaning up after Sandy and catching up on our paperwork. Please visit our new Facebook site - you’ll like it!
Sequels to Previous Events
OnWednesday, December 26, a grey winter’s day, 17 stalwart souls, several of them children, braved the weather to walk on Branford’s Tabor Property. Leader Chet Blomquist took the group along the proposed Shoreline Greenway Trail, noting the beauties of Chet’s Pond where ducks serenely floated, explaining the interesting history of its creation. The group noted the tracks of wild turkeys as well, as Chet described the potential of this beautiful section of Trail. This walk was aimed especially at children, getting them outside into the fresh air at a time of year when they are all too apt to stay indoors with new toys and electronic equipment, though several adults expressed the need for the outdoor exercise as well after holiday parties and dinners. Branford’s Shoreline Greenway Trail hopes to make this an annual event!
On January 5, despite some initial confusion due to a rally occurring the same time as the walk, Chet Blomquist and Leo Cristofar led a great walk on the Tabor property. There was a turnout of about 50 people, including one hearty 90-year-old walker!
The walk headed east on the Greenway Trail to the end, near Pine Orchard Road, then back on the Branford Trail, then up the road to the top of the landfill and back down.
Andy Campbell talked a bit about the Tabor property and gave out maps of the property and development plans. Chet talked along the way about the history of the Tabor property and Leo took some great pictures. Overall, it was an experience enjoyed by all! Thank you Chet and thank you Leo!
We will resume profiles next month!
Incorporated 1685 / population 29089 (as of 2005), Branford is thirteen miles east of New Haven and the second town along the Shoreline Greenway trail as it makes its way to Hammonasset. The plan is for Branford to have 8.9 miles of trail designated as Shoreline Greenway.
Happenings this month
Happy Holidays to all!
December 26 10am - First Annual Holiday Nature Walk
If your children spent Christmas playing inside with their new toys, eating candy, cookies, and all kinds of sweets, let’s get those children outside and burn up some energy! The Shoreline Greenway Trail will hold its first annual Holiday Nature Walk at its trail on the town’s Tabor property on Wednesday, December 26. We’ll walk by Chet’s Pond, see ducks and perhaps swans and other birds, and tracks of other wild animals such as deer and wild turkeys. The walk will be led by Chet Blomquist, and will last approximately one and a half hours. Pets are welcome; children under 7 should be accompanied by an adult. We will meet at the Tabor Lutheran Church parking lot at 10:00.
Summer and Fall were busy times for the Shoreline Greenway Trail in Branford!
In October, Branford hosted the Shoreline Greenway Trail’s First Saturday walk. It turned out to be a beautiful, summer-like day. From the trail, there were beautiful views of salt marshes and of the Thimble Islands beyond. The walk visited the Vedder property and saw the plaque honoring this teacher who donated land to the Land Trust. A great blue heron and several egrets were sighted while Pete Peterson told the group about the engineering and design of the trail section that runs parallel to Tilcon Road and Chet Blomquist provided historical information.
Profile of the Month
We will resume profiles in 2013!
To date the following sections of Branford’s trail has been owner approved, and much of it is open to the public, though not SGT trail ready:
- 3600 ft – Tabor Property Drive to Pine Orchard Road
- 2400 ft – Pine Orchard Road to Young’s Pond Park
- 2100 ft – Young’s Pond Park to Blackstone Ave. (Rte. 146)
- 2000 ft – 146 Totoket Rd to Tilcon Drive
- 1000 ft – Tilcon Drive to Tilcon Parking Lot (next to RR tracks)
- 4224 ft – Tilcon Parking Lot to Stony Creek
There are many, many important tasks associated with the Shoreline Greenway Trail, which include:
- Building and maintaining trails
- Raising funds
- Increasing SGT membership
- Government Liaison
- Fiscal work
- Identifying and tagging trees along the trail.
If you would like to volunteer, call Co-chair Judith Miller at 203-481-3870 or click the Volunteer tab of this website.
We’d love to have you on board!
Branford Team Meetings
All those who wish to promote the trail in Branford are welcome to join us at 7:00 p.m. on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at the Community House on the corner of Church and Prospect.
Branford Team Contact Information
Co Chairs: Chet Blomquist (203-488-5640; firstname.lastname@example.org) and Judy Miller (203-481-3870; email@example.com)
Trail Development: Jack Wood (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Pete Peterson (email@example.com)
Web manager and publicity: Jo Zaehringer (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Grants and Project Manager: Peg Stamp (email@example.com)
Local Points of Interest / Other Links
Branford Hikers – Geoffrey Smith 203-215-1175; firstname.lastname@example.org
Branford Land Trust – 26 School St., Branford 203-483-5263
James Blackstone Library – 758 Main St., Branford 203-488-1441