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jandrewsshovelEastern Trail News Page - Current and Archive

Many articles about the Eastern Trail are organized on this news archives page.  The most recent articles appear immediately below, with the first part of each article displayed. Click on any article title, or the "Read More.." link to read the full text of that article. A list of additional article titles appears at the bottom of the page.



Bringing the Trail South

By Marianne Goodine, Treasurer, Eastern Trail Management District

[Note: This article appeared in the Late Fall 2013 Newsletter. The full newsletter can be viewed in this pdf document]

With the Eastern Trail making its way southward, a very energetic group of trail enthusiasts has been meeting monthly in Wells to collaborate on ways to continue the trail. This group represents the Southern Eastern Trail Alliance (SETA) and consists of representatives from Wells, North Berwick, York, Kittery, and South Berwick.

The group is focused on ideas for fundraising and getting more exposure for the trail. During the summer of 2013 we set up an informational booth at local events such as the Kittery Block Party, Senior Expo in Kennebunk, Wells HarborFest , and the Millfield Festival in North Berwick. We are currently seeking interested individuals to become members of the Eastern Trail Alliance.


Spreading the Word about the Eastern Trail

By ETA President Bob Hamblen

[Note: This article appeared in the Late Fall 2013 Newsletter. The full newsletter can be viewed in this pdf document]

In the next to last week of October I hit the jackpot. No trip to Foxwoods, or Oxford for that matter, involved. And I haven’t bought a Powerball ticket … uh, ever. Instead, I had the opportunity to chat about the Eastern Trail at three separate events, and this wasn’t a case of the ETA begging for a chance to set up a table so we could try to sell folks on the Trail.

Nope, the ETA was actually invited to attend three meetings and participate in panel discussions; these groups really wanted to hear about the Trail, even though, per a show of hands at the latter two events, the majority of attendees were already familiar with the ET.


Maine Lighthouse Ride Kitchen Volunteers

[Note: This article appeared in the Late Fall 2013 Newsletter. The full newsletter can be viewed in this pdf document]

This is the thing about a good meal: it’s like a play. If it’s done right, there’s an enormous amount of hustle and bustle behind the scenes, but all the audience usually sees—and enjoys--is the wonderfulness of the end product. As a result, those behind-the-scenes workers, whether they are costume designers or cooks, don’t always get the recognition they deserve. (all photos by Jim Bucar)

Patti PoolePatti PooleSo let’s hear it for the “lunch ladies” of the ETA’s Maine Lighthouse Ride!— as they jokingly refer to themselves. Though they often go unseen by many of the riders, without them the end of the ride would be a lot less organized, efficient and friendly, and the riders a heck of a lot hungrier.

In 2008 the MLR base of operations moved to Southern Maine Community College (SMCC). Since that time, their leader, Patti Poole, has volunteered to plan, coordinate, and help prepare the end-of-the-ride meal. Mind you, most of the time she was also acting as the overall Volunteer Coordinator, a job she gratefully passed on this past year. Luckily for Patti, and for the MLR, for several years she has had a regular crew of volunteers—Pat Buckley, Cookie Kalloch and Jean Dufour—to make the task, if not easy, fun and well organized.

Cookie KallochCookie Kalloch“We’re a well oiled machine,” Patti notes. “The core four of us have been doing it together for so long, we have it down.” Her crew says it’s Patti’s organizational skills that make it all run smoothly.

None of them remembers exactly when they started volunteering to help with the ETA, and they all became involved via different paths. Some came to the ETA via friends: for Patti it was Carole Brush, executive director of the ETA; Cookie thinks Jean brought her in; while Jean points to John Andrews, President Emeritus of the ETA, as her connection—a chain reaction of volunteerism. Others took a more direct route: Pat says she heard about a trail, thought it was a great idea, and called up the office to ask how she could help.


Sell-Out Crowd for 10th Anniversary Maine Lighthouse Ride

[Note: This article appeared in the Late Fall 2013 Newsletter. The full newsletter can be viewed in this pdf document]

Century Riders Waiting at Start of MLRCentury Riders Waiting at Start of MLRAfter ten years, the word is out— the Maine Lighthouse Ride is one of the most popular bicycle rides in New England! Of course it’s hard to argue with miles of beautiful Maine coastline, great weather, and plenty of friendly volunteers. Having capped the ride at 1,000 riders due to concerns from our host communities, the Maine Lighthouse Ride was a complete sell-out three weeks before the ride. Yes, we must be doing something right!

Sunrise at Start of RideSunrise at Start of RideThis year, we were ready for the crowds with a tent at Southern Maine Community College to accommodate the overflow from the dining room, lots of additional police assistance in Portland Head LightPortland Head LightSouth Portland and Scarborough, and even more Porta-Potties and volunteers than last year. We are happy to report a very safe ride, with only a few minor scrapes and bruises, and lots of smiling faces.


Community feels 'whole again' with Memorial Bridge opening

By Charles McMahon
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
August 09, 2013 2:00 AM

PORTSMOUTH — They came on foot and by bike, Segways, motorized carts, kayaks, Jet Skis, boats and even antique cars. Some brought their dogs, others brought their babies. Many carried cameras, hoping to capture the historic moment.

The opening of the Memorial Bridge on Thursday, a moment nearly two years in the making, drew a few thousand people to both downtown Portsmouth and Badger's Island in Kittery, Maine.

And by all accounts, from transportation officials to local elected officials to civilians and veterans alike, the sentiment was much the same.


Portsmouth, Kittery, two states celebrate new Memorial Bridge

By Deborah McDermott This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

August 09, 2013 2:00 AM

KITTERY, Maine — The sense of anticipation was palpable Thursday morning on Badger's Island. This was the day. This was the moment Memorial Bridge would open. People were smiling. Hugging. Slapping each other on the back.

What a day!

It was a day to celebrate one state, New Hampshire, working with its sister state, Maine. It was a day to commemorate the bond of the city of Portsmouth, N.H., with the town of Kittery. It was a day of community and pride, a historic day for a 21st-century bridge.


Saco youth take to two wheels

Bikes for Kids celebrates success with 25 new bicycles, helmets

By LIZ GOTTHELF, Staff Writer

Published:Friday, July 26, 2013 12:05 PM EDT

Children with the Saco Parks and Recreation summer camp ride newly donated bicycles on the John R. Andrews Eastern Trail Bridge in Saco Thursday morning.Children with the Saco Parks and Recreation summer camp ride newly donated bicycles on the John R. Andrews Eastern Trail Bridge in Saco Thursday morning. (LIZ GOTTHELF/Journal Tribune)SACO — Saco Parks and Recreation participants are now riding the Eastern Trail in style.

The Saco Bikes for Kids campaign, a local effort to promote use of the Eastern Trail and healthy lifestyles among youth, debuted 25 shiny, new bikes and helmets Thursday morning. Local parks and recreation summer campers took an inaugural ride on the Diamondback trail bikes at the John R. Andrews Eastern Trail pedestrian bridge.

The bikes and equipment, which will be used by children in the city’s parks and recreation program, were purchased from funds collected over the past year from 46 contributors, as well as a penny fundraiser organized by the children at Saco Parks   and Recreation.

Read the entire article online here.

LD 16 Trail Bond - Can You Help?

bcmlogoOur good friends at the Bicycle Coalition of Maine have allowed us to publish the contents of an email alert they sent out on June 24 to generate support for LD 16. Please read their information below and please help where you can!

Additional information on LD16 and resources to help you express your support is on the Bicycle Coalition's website.

The information below was sent by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. of the Bicycle Coalition of Maine:

Subject: We're counting on you to call your legislators in support of a Transportation Bond that includes dedicated funding for biking and walking projects


You can't get there from here:


You Can't Get There from Here: Eastern Trail connection between South Portland, Scarborough remains elusive, expensive

SCARBOROUGH — If the "Bridge Out" sign is not enough, the drop down to the Nonesuch River from where a bridge used to cross the river is a vivid reminder of the obstacles blocking the off-road linkage of the Eastern Trail to South Portland.

But as a $150,000 study funded by the Maine Department of Transportation progresses, Town Planner Dan Bacon and Eastern Trail Alliance President Bob Hamblen are aware the water crossing may be the easiest part of constructing a 1.5-mile trail section to the Wainwright Field Athletic Complex in South Portland.


Eastern Trail Alliance eyes expansion

Group’s goal is to extend trail south from Kennebunk to Kittery

The Kennebunk Post - By Alex Acquisto,Staff Writer

The Eastern Trail Alliance and Southern Eastern Trail Alliance have begun to set new plans for expanding into motion.

Optimally, the off-road trail will continue from South Portland through Wells, North and South Berwick and Eliot, all the way down to Kittery. The alliance held an informational meeting Tuesday, March 26 in North Berwick to discuss expansion plans and feel out any opposition.

Formally designed in 1998 to follow the abandoned Eastern Railway, the Eastern Trail was constructed for runners, hikers, bikers and other general outdoor enthusiasts.


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