Arundel Conservation Trust celebrated its second annual meeting on March 5 at the Arundel Cottage Preserve. It was a joyous celebration of community and the progress made on conservation trust trails. Over 50 attendees gathered to hear the latest trust news and enjoy refreshments while getting to know each other.

Bud Danis and Dave Jourdan are awarded Arundel Conservation Trust’s 2020 Volunteer of the Year Award by Tanja Schoenbrod, ACT trailmaster, and Joan Hull, ACT president. From left, Bud Danis, Tanja Schoenbrod, Joan Hull and Dave Jourdan. Courtesy photo

Reports were given highlighting the many accomplishments throughout the past year including; the opening of Arundel Conservation’s first trail – Welch Woods on River Road, dramatic increases in membership and volunteers, federal recognition of the trust as an independent nonprofit organization, completion of the first trail connecting the town hall property on Limerick Road to the Eastern Trail, and results of fundraising efforts showing a solid financial standing. Additionally, over the past year Arundel Conservation Trust decreased the original loan to buy the Limerick Road Property of $175,000 to a current balance of $45,000.

Exciting plans for 2020 were unveiled including completing addition trails on the trust’s Limerick Road property, investigations into the development of specialized biking trails and the hope to improve access to the Cluff Preserve on Sinnott Road.

The highlight of the evening was the awards of Community Hero and Volunteers of the Year.

Roger Taschereau, Arundel director of public works receives Arundel Conservation Trust’s 2020 Community Hero Award. Courtesy photo

Roger Taschereau, Arundel’s public works director received the Community Hero Award for his support and help in building the connection to the Eastern Trail. By coordinating town maintenance trips on the Eastern Trail with the trust’s trail building schedule he was able to facilitate deliveries of building supplies to the site that saved hours of backbreaking work for our volunteers. He also was a superb resource regarding appropriate supplies and building techniques. Whenever we had a new building challenge Roger and his crew were there to help us find a way to make things happen. Arundel Conservation Trust and the town of Arundel are very lucky to have him as part of our community.

The first of our Volunteer of the Year Awards went to Bud Danis and Dave Jourdan. They head up the trail-building efforts of the Kennebunkport Conservation Trust and have taught us at Arundel Conservation Trust everything we know about trail building. They have both spent countless hours teaching, mentoring and building trails with us every day with a volunteer crew on the trail. Their help and support has been invaluable from the beginning of our efforts.

The second volunteer award went to the Rush Family headed by Catherine and Sam Rush and their four children, David (14), Molly (10), Lila (7), and “Big Little Sam” (4). They were some of our first volunteers and have been on every trail-building crew since. From clearing brush, raking, toting lumber to screwing treads to boardwalks and bridges they are some of the most dedicated and hardest workers we have.

There was also a special recognition of Boy Scout Jacob Pisani, of Troop 330, who planned and supervised the building of a 40-foot bridge over a stream to help connect to the Eastern Trail as his Eagle Scout project.

The Rush family receives the Arundel Conservation Trust’s special 2020 Volunteers of the Year Award presented by Tanja Schoenbrod, ACT trailmaster and Joan Hull ACT president. From left, Molly Rush(10), Tanja Schoenbrod, Joan Hull, Catherine Rush, Little Big Sam (4), David Rush (13), Lila Rush (7) and Sam Rush. Courtesy photo

The evening ended with a video showcasing Arundel Conservation Trust’s many events throughout the year as well as action shots of the mighty Trailblazers volunteer crews building trails. To see the video and learn more about ACT, visit our website at www.arundeltrust.org.

Joan Hull is president of the Arundel Conservation Trust. She can be reached at [email protected]

Comments are not available on this story.