Walk Off Those Cookies December Walk

Thanks to all who joined our successful “Walk off those Holiday Cookies” December group walk on the SNETT. This was another walk with an enthusiastic crowd (15 people and 2 dogs) as we braved some morning ice on the Grove Street and Lake Street sections and trekked all to way to Center Street in Bellingham.

The group as we reached Center Street trailhead in Bellingham, MA.

Once the late morning sun arrived the trail was very navigable with the few icy spots clearly visible. The walkers who brought slip on ice crampons seemed especially enthusiastic!

Some icy spots between Lake and Center Streets in Bellingham, MA.

On today’s walk we had two founding members, Mark and Raianne, of the Massachusetts Walking Tour group who related how they promote local arts and culture throughout Massachusetts. Their Walking Tour came through the SNETT and Franklin in 2017. If you have missed it, keep an eye out for their big, annual June event. Perhaps when our Prospect Street tunnel project is complete we can entice them back for a celebratory concert!

Dogs are always welcome on our walks.

The January group walk will be held on Monday, January 20th (MLK Holiday) at 10am. Starting from Grove Street parking lot in Franklin. Happy New Year and hope you can join us on our January group walk on the SNETT!

Spring Street info kiosk dedication

On November 3rd, 2019 group of FBRTC members gathered to honor the memory of our late member David Barber. Dave’s wife, Audrey Barber, received a commemorative plague from our committee that was placed inside the kiosk Dave built near Spring Street to honor his memory, service and dedication to the SNETT and many other New England rail trails.

Audrey Barber with FBRTC members at the Spring St kiosk.
Audrey Barber with the commemorative plague.
Dave Barber (left) with volunteers installing the kiosk near Spring St, Franklin – October 2017.

November Walk – #optoutside

Excellent turnout for our November ‘Walk Off That Turkey’ SNETT group walk! We had our most adventurous group to date as we walked the trail from Grove St in Franklin all the way to Center St in Bellingham (and back). This group that wouldn’t stop logged 5.2 miles worth of steps as the sunshine and scenery kept enticing us forward. We encountered many users of the SNETT including walkers, joggers and runners. It seemed like everyone who owned a black dog was out enjoying the trail today! We also noticed the Kindness Rocks display (near Center St trailhead) – it could use a few more stones with notes of kindness or encouragement :). We hope you can join us for our December walk, so keep your eyes on the calendar here or on our Facebook events page.

#GivingTuesday – Donate Today

Join the global generosity movement to do good in your own community. The #GivingTuesday this year is on December 3rd and we would love to have your financial support, so that we can apply for larger matching grants to help improve the SNETT rail trail, to be able to do more pop-up StoryWalks®, to provide exciting member-only events and so much more.

Please donate/become a member today. Thank you! https://www.franklinbellinghamrailtrail.org/join-support/

Note: Many companies will match your gift.

SNETT Fall views

It does not have to be sunny to enjoy beautiful fall views on the SNETT. Do you have photos to share? Email us at FBRTCommittee@gmail.com and we will be happy to post them on our Facebook page.

Lovely views of farmland not far from Center St. in Bellingham, MA.
Beautiful fall scenery along the SNETT between Lake and Center Streets in Bellingham, MA.
Dog walker near Lake St. walking toward Center St. in Bellingham, MA.
SNETT at Lake St. parking lot in Bellingham, MA.
SNETT near Prospect St. in Franklin, MA.

October group walk recap

This month’s trail walk on the SNETT was extra entertaining as the wooded path featured a StoryWalk(R) book. The group strolled the Bellingham section of the SNETT starting at the Center St trailhead. Along the way kids and adults took turns reading the placard pages of “The Golden Acorn”. (Spoiler Alert: Basically friendship is the biggest reward!). Within the group was even a family represented by four generations! Autumn colors are really starting to bloom on the SNETT, so be sure to make time to visit.

We would like to thank our volunteer Darren Marino for organizing and leading the monthly group walks and we hope you can join us for our November one too. Keep an eye on the events on our website and/or our Facebook page for more details. See you on the trail!

October happenings

We have a busy month ahead of us and we hope you can connect with us at one of our events. Please see the list below and click the link for more details.

October 5, 2019 – Harvest Festival, Franklin MA, 12-5pm – booth #11 near Rockland Trust

October 8, 2019 – FBRTC Monthly Meeting, 7:30pm, Franklin YMCA. Public always welcome!

October 12-15, 2019 – Pop-up StoryWalk® on the SNETT – Center Street trailhead in Bellingham, MA. Please note the date/time changes due to the weather!

October 14, 2019 – Group Walk on the SNETT – 10am, Center Street trailhead in Bellingham.

October 26, 2019 – SNETT Fall Clean Up – 9am-12pm – Lake Street trailhead in Bellingham, MA.

You can always find us on Facebook too!

Happy Fall!

BIG NEWS! – Prospect st. tunnel funding approved!!

We are excited to announce that funding of the Prospect Street tunnel on the SNETT rail trail in Franklin, MA has been approved!!!

State Rep. Jeff Roy (D-Franklin) and Rep. Mike Soter (R-Bellingham) shared this great news with the Franklin & Rail Trail Committee members, guests and visitors at our Tuesday’s meeting on September 10, 2019.

State Rep. Jeff Roy delivering the news about funding approval to FBRTC and community members.

The project will go out to bid in November 2019 and should be completed by the end of the summer/early fall of 2020.

The funding of this project is a result of many years of collective effort by FBRTC members, state legislators, DCR officials, Franklin and Bellingham Town officials and residents.

Town and State Officials present at the meeting (left to right): James Kupfer (Bellingham Town Planner), Cary Vandenakker (DCR Representative), Rep. Mike Soter (Bellingham), Melanie Hamblen (Franklin Town Councilor), Rep. Jeff Roy (Franklin), Marc Kaplan (FBRTC president)

“The Franklin & Bellingham Rail Trail Committee (FBRTC) is proud to be the community advocate for the SNETT and the funding of the Prospect Street tunnel project,” said Marc Kaplan, FBRTC president. “The tunnel project solves a major impasse on the SNETT and creates a seamless connection between the towns of Franklin and Bellingham. When completed, the tunnel will help realize our mission of making a universally accessible trail for all ages and abilities and will improve the quality of life for residents. We would like to thank Representatives Roy and Soter and Senators Spilka and Rausch, as well as Franklin and Bellingham Town administrators for their leadership to secure funding for this important project, and the DCR for their tireless work and direct assistance in developing the SNETT rail trail.”

We cannot forget to also thank the Franklin Odd Fellows – the Franklin & Bellingham Rail Trail Committee was originally formed in January 2009 as their community project!

We are so looking forward to see this project come to a completion!

Conceptual rendering (courtesy of DCR) of the tunnel (above), current state of the trail (below).

For additional, detailed information, please visit the following resources:

State Rep. Jeffrey Roy Blog

Milford Daily News