On April 24, 2024

Better Places crowdfunding campaign launched for recovery of the Ottauquechee River Trail

$10,000 goal to receive a 2:1 matching grant

The Woodstock community will soon be able to again fully enjoy the Ottauquechee River Trail (ORT) thanks to a recently launched crowdfunding campaign. The campaign is sponsored by the Vermont Dept. of Housing and Community Development’s Better Places program and led by the volunteers at the Ottauquechee River Trail, which is a project within the Woodstock Community Trust.

“Access to outdoor recreation opportunities is essential to the health and well-being of every community,” said Dept. of Housing and Community Development Commissioner Alex Farrell.  “Rebuilding the Ottauquechee River Trail will redevelop this well-loved, inclusive space for people of all ages and abilities to enjoy the outdoors.”

A popular trail along the river in Woodstock will be rebuilt once funds are secured.

If the campaign reaches its $10,000 goal by May 31 the Flood Recovery Project for the Ottauquechee River Trail will receive a matching grant of $20,000 from DHCD’s Better Places program. 

The funds raised will be used to rebuild the Ottauquechee River Trail after the damaging flooding that occurred in July 2023. During the event ORT’s lower field, which is over a mile long and right next to the Ottauquechee River, was submerged beneath 8-10 feet of water. Bog bridges and trail signage were extensively damaged, and benches and picnic tables were lost. In addition, this funding will enable planting of trees to strengthen the riparian buffer along the trail and to improve signage at the trailhead.

“Our goal is to get ORT rebuilt so everyone can enjoy it again,” said Tom Weschler, ORT lead volunteer. “We were averaging 500 people per week using ORT before the flooding.  ORT is Woodstock’s only flat, walking trail that is also universally accessible. This allows older adults, families with very young children, and individuals recovering from injuries or with disabilities to easily enjoy the river and surrounding nature.”

For more information visit: Tinyurl.com/OttauquecheeRiverTrail.

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