The South Branch Trail’s Clark’s Pond entrance. On Saturday, Sept. 26, at 10 a.m., the South Portland Land Trust will be holding a grand opening ceremony for the South Branch Trail, located alongside the trail’s Philbrook Avenue entrance. The ceremony coincides with the 27th annual National Public Lands Day. Catherine Bart photo

SOUTH PORTLAND — To celebrate National Environmental Education Foundation’s Public Lands Day, the South Portland Land Trust is holding a grand opening ceremony for the South Branch Trail’s completion on Sept. 26.

The ceremony will begin at 10 a.m. at the trail’s entrance alongside Philbrook Avenue, opposite of the JC Penney store at the Maine Mall. Mayor Katherine Lewis will attend for the ribbon-cutting, and CDC guidelines will be followed.

“While the first half of the South Branch Trail was built several years ago, the land trust doubled the length of the trail last October when the Maine Conservation Corps increased the length to one mile,” said the land trust in a written statement. “South Portland Land Trust volunteers made many improvements to the trail during the past year, including adding 13 bog bridges and a new signage system.”

Lucas Lefebvre, an Eagle Scoute candidate, has designed and installed the new signage on the South Branch Trail, said Richard Rottkov, president of the land trust.

The South Branch Trail has been expanded to a mile-long route, after the South Portland Land Trust and Marine Conservation Corps were able to lengthen the trail with an easement last October. Catherine Bart photo

According to the trust website, the trail has two entrances, one located beside the Cinemagic theater at 333 Clarks Pond Parkway, and the Philbrook Avenue entrance. Built in an urban area, the trail is surrounded by vegetation, featuring two ponds, four bridges, crosses two creeks, and has no road crossings.

“Myself and others enjoy it because you don’t have to go back the way you came,” Rottkov said.

Rottkov said that the trail has been open for a while, but the land trust wanted to hold a ceremony that was connected to National Public Lands Day.

“To encourage people to join in and visit their public lands, NPLD is a fee-free day for all federal public lands and many state parks,” the land trust said. “Whether you volunteer on NPLD, enjoy some boating, hiking, fishing, or camping, or simply learn more about your public lands and the plants and wildlife that live there, we invite you to take this day to enjoy the great outdoors and celebrate the lands that give us so much.”

The South Branch Trail. Catherine Bart photo

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