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American Trails

CONCURRENT SESSIONS: Saturday, Oct. 23
Time: 10:15 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

SCHEDULE SUBJECT TO CHANGE! ~ see speaker bios

STREAM CROSSINGS — THE VIEW FROM BELOW (Room: 5-A&B)

Traveling along stream corridors is an important component of a trail experience, but they can also challenge the trail designer/builder, and require continued maintenance. As trail/stream interactions increase, the importance of protecting stream integrity and the investment of time and dollars in our trail crossings grows. Both depend on better understandings of the complex nature of stream systems. This presentation will describe the sometimes overlooked attributes, functions and processes of stream systems and it will identify the effects of poorly designed, built or maintained crossings on stream systems (and vice versa). Lastly, this presentation will discuss state-of-the-art technologies that can be used to minimize conflicts at stream crossings.

Speakers: Attila Bality, Outdoor Recreation Planner, National Park Service Rivers & Trails Program in Santa Fe, New Mexico; James M. MacCartney, River Restoration Specialist, assisting Trout Unlimited chapters and National Park Service

THE GREENWAYS INITIATIVE (Room: 6-A)

Detroit? A national model for green infrastructure? It's true! Learn how $25 million in privately raised funds is transforming the landscape, creating opportunities for people to enjoy the natural world, and changing the way municipalities work with each other. Grants, leveraged resources, training seminars, institutional development&emdash;it's all part of the GreenWays Initiative, a $25 million, privately funded initiative of the Community Foundation for Southeastern Michigan. Find out how Detroit is doing it, and what you need to make it work in your community.

Speakers: Thomas M. Woiwode, Director, GreenWays Initiative, Community Foundation for Southeastern Michigan; Chuck Flink, founder and owner of Greenways Incorporated

RISK AND TRAILS (Room: 6-B)

With the development of trail systems across the United States, public and private landowners are being asked to allow the development of trails on their property. With these new trails comes the growing demand from a multitude of users to access the trails to enjoy the many benefits they provide. The Risk & Trails workshop examines the challenges created through multi-use trails and provides a thorough understanding of the liabilities associated with trails, while providing various tactics and resources available to minimize these risks. The session will benefit public owners of trails, trail associations, conservation authorities and private trail operators.

Speaker: Doug Wyseman, Trail Consultant

THE GLOBAL CONNECTION — TRAILS ON THE INTERNATIONAL SCENE (Room: 7)

This session will provide an overview of the many new trail and greenway initiatives taking place around the world. Programs in Spain, Australia and the Czech Republic, among others, will be highlighted as examples of how various countries approach trail development. As the trails and greenways movement grows, so too does the interest in developing an international network of key players and organizations to share experience and expertise, inspire ideas and develop standards of good practice. The development of an International Charter/Cooperative Agreement will be discussed.

Speaker: Jeffrey Ciabotti, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy

AMERICA'S NATIONAL TRAILS SYSTEM — WHAT'S HOT? (Room: 8-A&B)

This workshop, using a radio show dialogue format, will explore various cutting-edge issues associated with the National Trails System. Panelists will share current projects and initiatives such as challenge cost-shares, educational outreach, multi-cultural interpretation projects, interagency coordination, controlled burns, prairie restoration, GIS, and capacity building. Many national trails serve as catalysts for regional conservation projects. Participants will come away with an enhanced appreciation for the breadth of America's National Trails System and how its components can connect to local trails. The panel itself illustrates a dynamic public/private partnership.

Moderator: Deb Salt, National Trails Coordinator, Bureau of Land Management

Speakers: Gary Werner, Executive Director, Partnership for the National Trails System; Steve Elkinton, Program Leader, National Trails System Program, National Park Service; Jim B. Miller, Dispersed Recreation Program Manager, USDA Forest Service

TRAILS IN PRIVATE MASTER PLANNED COMMUNITIES (Room: 8-C)

The value and fun of public trails has long been known. Those same benefits plus more can be realized by trails in privately owned master planned communities. This presentation will explore the most participated forms of recreation and how trails service these recreation needs. It will show how trails provide pedestrian linkage to key components of residential communities while providing an alternative to vehicular traffic within a housing development. Further, we will show how trails as part of a greenway system can increase individual property owner's value. Circulation patterns, trail types, offsite linkage and potential usage will also be discussed.

Speaker: Erik Larsen, Palmer Course Design

TAKING ADVANTAGE OF THE TRAIL (Room: 9-A)

A trail is a great venue to educate people "along the way" on how making small "steps" toward a healthier lifestyle can benefit individuals and families. With more trails up and coming todaythis presents a great and unique opportunity to touch a large population and to get more people taking advantage of the trails. The Cooper Institute will explore ways trails can be utilized to motivate and educate people on becoming physically active and eating healthfully everyday.

Speaker: Shelley M. LaMonte, M.S., Program Coordinator, The Cooper Institute

Americans need more physical activity to fight overweight and obesity. PricewaterhouseCoopers partnered with the American Recreation Coalition to research Recreation's Role in Combating Obesity. PwC explored impacts from increased physical activity on overweight and obesity and identified opportunities for business, government, and users/providers of recreation opportunities to aid the cause.

Speaker: Chris Campbell, Senior Associate, Washington Federal Practice, PricewaterhouseCoopers

QUANTIFYING THE IMPACT OF PUBLIC TRAILS AND PARKS IN COMMUNITIES (Room: 9-B)

This presentation will provide quantifiable data on how trails contribute to the economic vitality of local communities, foster new business formations, revitalize existing businesses and foster increased tourism. Presenters will explain the current need for more parks and trails and introduce new methods of research that are being used around the country to make the case for creating new trails, greenways and parks. Using findings from an economic impact analysis on the NCR Trail in Maryland and the Heritage Rail Trail in Pennsylvania, and new research from the Trust for Public Land's, Parks for People publication, presenters expect to equip those who work to create trails with the tools and evidence to support their efforts to create these places in local communities.

Speakers: Cynthia Whiteford, Vice President/Central Region Director; Carl R. Knoch, Chairman, York County (PA) Rail Trail Authority

RESEARCH: WHAT DO WE HAVE, WHERE IS IT, WHAT'S MISSING? (Room: 9-C)

Fully realizing the beneficial role of trails will require visionary policy development, expert planning, skillful management, and creative marketing. All of these functions are most effective and efficient when driven by valid and reliable data and directed by deliberate on-going evaluation, requiring targeted research of many types. This workshop will involve a panel presentation followed by an interactive session involving participants. Its purpose is to inform attendees of research that now exists related to trails, help them better access existing research, and involve them in identifying the most important research that still needs to be conducted.

Moderator: Dr. Roger L. Moore, Professor, Department of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management, North Carolina State University

Speakers: Hugh Morris, Research Director, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy; Stuart Macdonald, Contractor, American Trails; John Pugh, Department of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management, North Carolina State University

CONNECTING THE PARTNERSHIPS — COMPLEX TRAIL PROJECTS MEETING MODERN RECREATION DEMANDS (Room: 10-A)

This session features three successful recreation projects that used partnerships to their full advantage: Central Arizona Project Trail (not yet completed), Las Vegas Valley, and Pittsburgh-to-Harrisburg Mainline Canal Greenway. Each initiative demonstrates a multi-disciplinary approach to overcoming challenges related to integrating environment, heritage, and economics into large-landscape trail planning. By developing unique solutions, these project representatives have dealt with complex jurisdictional relationships while serving the urban and rural communities of the corridors. The session offers specific solutions, including Pennsylvania's Hubs and Spokes model that has resulted in connecting visitors to some of the country's most breathtaking and culturally rich landscapes.

Moderator: Jane Sheffield, Executive Director, Allegheny Ridge Corporation;

Speakers: Jenny Brown, Outreach Coordinator, Allegheny Ridge Corporation; Sharon R. Hood, CAP Land Administrator, Central Arizona Project; Liz Smith-Incer, Director, Nevada Field Office, National Park Service

ECOTOURISM AND TRAILS: THE RIO GRANDE VALLEY AND THE SUWANNEE RIVER WILDERNESS TRAIL (ROOM: 10-B)

This session focuses on two efforts that are directed toward enhancing tourism and recreational opportunities through a regional focus on trails. The Rio Grande Valley is in the middle of a trail building boom, fueled by interest in ecotourism and the need for low cost recreational facilities in an economically needy area. The Suwannee River Wilderness Trail is a partnership effort to enhance local economies and preserve the character of the historic Suwannee River Basin through an extensive system of trails. The presenters will share lessons learned and important considerations for undertaking regional efforts like these in economically disadvantaged areas.

Speakers: Marta de la Garza Newkirk, National Park Service, Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Program; Larry Pressler, City of McAllen, TX; Lew Scruggs, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Division of Recreation and Parks

Return to the Concurrent Sessions schedule ~ see speaker bios

SCHEDULE SUBJECT TO CHANGE!