"Most of you runners are by this time very familiar with the Baille Ard Trails in the Ashby area (if you don't know them by that name, they are the trails by the Washbrook just off Cottage Rd. near Sherwood Park Jr. High.
You may also know that the trails suffered very extensive damage during the Thanksgiving flood last year.
You may also not know that these trails are basically a one-man show. Dave Gabriel has conceived of, built, and maintained these trails (granted with some help) over many years, and created an amazing place for the community. Although we are blessed in CB to have some amazing hiking trails in other areas, having a trail right in town where you can see wildlife, get shade and peace, and even hear the call and see a great grey owl is pretty amazing. It is part of what has kept us in CB over the years despite many frustrations with the community. (the other thing that has kept us here is you folks - the awesome athletic community).
The other thing that is important to know is that the Baille Ard is "special" in that it is not a provincial, federal, or municipally owned/maintained park. It is community-run, and manages grant-to-grant and through volunteer work.
So the flood damage is that much harder to recover from, and here's where WE NEED YOU.First: PLEASE BUY A TICKET FOR A DRAW FOR A QUILT. This is a gorgeous, hand-made quilt from Elsie Buck. I WILL COME TO YOU if you want (if you are within a few Km of my house), or you can drop by my house and purchase one. Elsie has donated this quilt, so 100% of your money goes right to the Baille Ard Association to buy gravel and other supplies to fix the trails.
Second: CONSIDER DOING A DIRECTED DONATION to NS Trails (or you can just buy a whole whack'o tickets with the same effect, and it will increase your chances of winning the quilt). (See below from Dave for details)
Third: PLEASE COME TO THE MAY 13th EVENT which officially launches
The Brooks Loop" (See separate post for details)Fourth: If you are able-bodied and willing to do some work at the trails, please email Dave directly through the Baille Ard contact email (see below)
It's not often I ask for donations or financial support (in fact, I avoid this like the plague) but this is a unique problem that really requires community support to fix. Please help out. And please please please don't leave me with a huge bunch of unsold tickets! :-) The following is from Dave:
Please act on and forward this to your contacts.
The Baille Ard Recreation Association is experiencing one of its most exciting and challenging years. At the same time as our volunteers are repairing major damage to our existing trails, we are also extending our trails to Cossitt Heights, developing new activities for families, seniors and students, promoting linkages with Greenlinks and Wentworth Park using city streets, and working to create an active living trail on the banks of the Washbrook from Sherwood Park Education Centre to St. Peters Road. We need volunteer help and financial success to succeed.
You can help financially by purchasing tickets on our draw (see attachment) and encouraging your friends and colleagues who understand the value of the Baille Ard Nature Trails to our community to do likewise. You might also consider donating to our association either directly (firstname.lastname@example.org) or through the Nova Scotia Trails website (http://www.novascotiatrails.com).