Commentary

Coastal Trails Coalition Perseveres During Pandemic

Overcoming Obsticles in High Hopes of New Trails

Photo by Stan Slade
Participating Allies

Editor’s note: This is one in a continuing series of guest opinions about fostering environmental stewardship and addressing the impact of COVID-19. The series is coordinated by ACES, the Alliance of Climate and Environmental Stewards.  


Making Trails through a Pandemic

“The pandemic can’t stop us,” says the December newsletter of the Coastal Trails Coalition. Last spring, our CTC Board pivoted to virtual meetings to help ensure that local trails continue to provide opportunities for enjoying nature, exercise and fresh air, and safe places to bike or walk with family and socially distance with friends. This year finds even more trails and connections, such as between Salisbury’s Ghost Trail and Elm Street in Amesbury. The other works underway are too many to list here, so please visit coastaltrails.org where you may sign up for the newsletter.

After granting funds to assist with Newburyport’s Harborfront path between Joppa Flats and the boardwalk downtown, the next big project for the CTC is the missing link through Newbury connecting to Georgetown trails.

Overcoming Challenges

Some people say the Newbury trail is a pipe dream, but I’ve been on the Coalition board long enough to remember when the Garrison trail on the I-95 Whitter Bridge was a pipe dream, and more recently so was the Salisbury trail all the way to New Hampshire.

In fact, Salisbury’s progress was recently acknowledged by the East Coast Greenway, the alliance that oversees the national route from Maine to Florida. On greenway.org they wrote: “The strategy and persistence shown by the local advocates to make this work is remarkable.”

I would like to applaud Jerry Klima, our intrepid CTC leader, as well as governments from top down to local towns, and citizens who have contributed in ways large and small with donations, volunteering, or cheering us on.

**BREAKING NEWS** The Coastal Trails Coalition has donated another grant of $10,000 for ongoing work on the Newbury trail.

Together we are stronger in so many ways. Thank you all, especially in these challenging times, for supporting the goal of building pathways to connect communities.

To contact the Coastal Trails Coalition board, write to info@coastaltrails.org. To learn more, volunteer or make a donation, visit coastaltrails.org. See you on the trails!

This column was coordinated by ACES YOUTH CORPS member, Caleb Bradshaw. To share any comments or questions, please send an email to acesnewburyport@gmail.com. To learn more about ACES, please view our WEBSITE –  https://www.aces-alliance.org

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about the author
Cynthia Raschke

A long-time participant in community and ecological causes, Cyd was a co-founder of Adopt-A-Beach which launched the annual Coastsweep cleanups on Plum Island's PRNWR.  Shortly after joining the Coastal Trails Coalition, she inaugurated the Slow Bike Race event held during Yankee Homecoming. Her favorite way to enjoy the trails is on a bicycle.  



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