Support Conover Rd Bikeway Multi-Purpose Trail Project

Thursday, August 11 by joegorun

http://www.westwindsornj.org/conover-road.html.

Help make West Windsor more accessible and safe for walking, running and biking to Conover Fields, Mercer Lake, PNRA Rowing Center and Mercer Park by showing support for the Conover Rd multi-purpose paved trail project. It will connect the trail at S Post Rd, Conover Fields, and all of the neighborhoods until Galston Dr.

Submit your comments online by Friday, August 19 at:http://www.westwindsornj.org/conover-road.html and select ContactUs Form.

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National Trails Day June 1st

Thursday, May 30 by ezeitler

PrintSaturday, June 1st is National Trails Day, where people all over the country will be getting out to enjoy and build up our trails. We’re lucky to have so many great trails in the parks and along the waterways in NJ and if you go out any time from sunrise to sunset, the crowds will tell you how popular they are for both recreation and transport. Where do you wish we had a trail where we don’t? I know the extension of the Trolley Line Trail as part of the Knight Trail is one item on the wish list of the students in West Windsor and Plainsboro. Where else would a trail help you to get around more safely and comfortably, or help you to get out and about walking and hiking?

For those wanting to get out on National Trails Day, here are some of the events happening in our area in celebration of National Trails Day:

Help build a new trail at Scotts Corner Conservation Area

Help the NJ Audubon Society maintain the trails in the Plainsboro Preserve

Run from Trenton to Piscataway on the D&R Canal Towpath. They start around 5 AM for the 34.1 mile run! Those who “only” want to run 20 miles start at Rocky Hill.

For all the events in New Jersey from the shore to the Delaware Water Gap and to search PA, NY, etc

WWBPA will be at the Farmers’ Market on June 1st to celebrate their 10th anniversary. Stop by our booth and say hi before you head out hiking, walking and biking!

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It’s Movie Time!

Wednesday, January 9 by JerryFoster

Not from the movie but from the AT in Maine

Join us Saturday January 26 at 7:30pm for a showing of TREK: A Journey on the Appalachian Trail, at the West Windsor Arts Center. Admission is free for WWBPA or WWAC members, $5 otherwise.

The movie tells “the story of four young men and the people they meet as they attempt to hike the 2,168 miles of the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. Shot and edited by the hikers themselves, this documentary is one of the most accurate portrayals of the thru-hiker lifestyle that has been produced to date. Spanning 14 states and five months, this critically-acclaimed film will inspire you to follow your own dreams, no matter what the odds.

Here’s more about the movie and the trailer.

The West Windsor Arts Center is at the corner of Alexander and Scott, the box office opens at 7pm – hope to see you there!

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Volunteers Clear More Trails

Saturday, December 8 by silvia

Thanks to 20 volunteers who came with handsaws, loppers, chainsaws and more on Saturday, Dec. 1, the Millstone Preserve trails, the Millstone West trails and the last of the Rogers Preserve trails are now cleared of fallen trees and other Sandy damage. Our group ranged from a kindergartener armed with small loppers who attacked those invasive thorny green vines to a longtime resident in his 80s who helped cut branches with his handsaw. The group also included two other elementary school students and two high schoolers. Three volunteers with chainsaws allowed us to clear the biggest trees, and our own “lumberjack” even got Santa to deliver his Christmas chainsaw early.

It is amazing what such a group can do in less than two hours!

We also are thankful for some neighborhood “trail elves” who cleared some trees in Millstone Preserve before we arrived and the five volunteers who stayed for an extra two hours to remove more downed trees.

We left most of the leaves on the ground to fight against mud and soil erosion, so please let us know if you find some trails difficult.

Trails in the Rogers Arboretum and Zaitz Preserve still need to be cleared. We plan to tackle Rogers Arboretum at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 15, weather permitting. Join us in the arboretum parking lot on Clarksville Road. Once again, we will aim to finish by 12:30 p.m.

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Help Clear the Millstone Trail

Friday, November 30 by silvia

As West Windsor’s public works department concentrates on clearing our roads of Sandy’s debris, members of the all-volunteer West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance are tackling the many trails in town, which also suffered heavy damage. Volunteers have already cleared the popular dog-run trail at Community Park and much of the Rogers Preserve trails, where countless large trees were toppled by the winds.
This Saturday, Dec. 1, we will be at Millstone Preserve. Join us at the Millstone Preserve parking lot on Millstone Road at 10:30 a.m. with loppers, chain saws, hand saws, gloves and whatever other equipment you think might help. Children are welcome with an adult and can help pick up smaller branches.

We will finish by 12:30 p.m. If we have enough people and time permits, we may also start on the Millstone West trail off Joanne Street.

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Our Trails Are Slowly Being Cleared

Friday, November 23 by silvia

We’re making progress in clearing our trails of fallen trees after Sandy.

Three WWBPA volunteers cleared the fallen trees off the dog run trail in Community Park. There were several trees blocking the popular blacktop trail and a great deal of debris and leaves on the pathway. It is now clear for all to use.
One day later, a large crew of volunteers tackled the down trees in the Rogers Preserve trails. One section was so bad that we had to re-route the trail around a large fallen tree. Even so, most of the Preserve is now cleared, with only a couple of very large trees yet to be cut. These will be tackled soon, but they are passable with a little effort. Many thanks to all who helped, particularly to Phil, the “Minnesota lumberjack” who impressed us with his chainsaw skills. Some of us had never seen a giant rootball and stump settle back into place oh-so-slowly when cut right.
We will keep you updated as we clear more of the open space trails in West Windsor. If anyone wishes to join us on our next “work day”, please send an email to wwbikeped@gmail.com. We’ll also send out an email to our members. Feel free to bring a friend. The more people who help, the faster we can get our trails back to normal.

A trail is cleared

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The Wrath of Sandy

Thursday, November 15 by silvia

Sandy’s damage in West Windsor extended to our trails. Take a look:

Help make it possible for friends, family and neighbors to enjoy an after-Thanksgiving walk through the woods by joining us this Saturday to help clear part of Rogers Preserve. We will meet at the Clarksville Road entrance at 10:30 a.m. Please bring gloves and tools: rake, loppers, hand saw, gas-powered chain saw — whatever you have.

All are welcome, and all help is appreciated.

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Our Trail-to-Trail Community Bike Ride (and Walk)

Monday, September 24 by silvia

Join the West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance for its sixth annual Community Bike Ride on Oct. 6 (rain date Oct 7) as we head down the D&R Canal towpath to discover how it connects to other bicycling and walking routes.

Our eight-mile ride will leave from Turning Basin Park (Alexander Road and the canal) and head to Brearley House in Lawrence (located on the 20-mile Lawrence Hopewell Trail). We’ll stop there for refreshments and some give-aways, plus hear about the Lawrence Hopewell Trail and the East Coast Greenway before turning back.

This is the last in our series of free family-friendly bike rides for 2012. Meet at the park at 2:15 p.m.; the ride leaves at 2:30 p.m. No preregistration is necessary; just bring a bike in good working order and a helmet. Children under 13 should be accompanied by an adult.

This year, we are adding a walking option, from Port Mercer Canal House. Gather at the parking lot at 2:15 p.m. (departure time is 2:30 p.m.) for the 1.3-mile walk to Brearley House. Because of road construction, the parking lot is only accessible from Route 1, not Princeton.

The ride is so-sponsored by the Lawrence Hopewell Trail, Sustainable Lawrence and the Princeton Pedestrian and Bicycle Advisory Committee.

About two dozen people, many of them new faces, joined us on Sept. 15 for a five-mile loop from Community Park down the Trolley Line Trail to Penn-Lyle Road and past High School South back to the park. Thanks for coming along for the ride!

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Happy 75th Birthday, Appalachian Trail

Friday, August 24 by JerryFoster

The Appalachian Trail Conservancy recently celebrated the 75th anniversary of the completion of the trail, which runs almost 2200 miles from Springer Mountain, GA to Mount Katahdin, ME.

According to the AT Conservancy’s web site:

The A.T. was completed 75 years ago on August 14, 1937. This task took over 15 years to complete and involved thousands of volunteers, agency partners, local Trail maintaining clubs and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. The A.T. is one of the longest continuously marked footpaths in the world, measuring roughly 2,180 miles in length. The Trail goes through fourteen states along the crests and valleys of the Appalachian mountain range from the southern terminus at Springer Mountain, Georgia, to the Trail’s northern terminus at Katahdin, Maine.

It has been estimated that 2-3 million people visit the Trail every year and about 1,800–2,000 people attempt to “thru-hike” the Trail. People from across the globe are drawn to the A.T. for a variety of reasons: to reconnect with nature, to escape the stress of city life, to meet new people or deepen old friendships, or to experience a simpler life.

The A.T. is a unit of the National Park System and is managed under a unique partnership between the public and private sectors that includes, among others, the National Park Service, the USDA Forest Service, an array of state agencies, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, and 31 local Trail-maintaining clubs.

 

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Let’s Clean Up Our Trails

Friday, August 3 by silvia

The West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance and Friends of West Windsor Open Space invite you to join us for some maintenance on the Rogers Arboretum and Rogers Preserve trails. We will beat the heat by meeting at 10 a.m. on Sunday, August 12 in the Rogers Arboretum parking lot on Clarksville Road. We will be clearing trails of brush, weeds and downed trees. If there are enough people, we will tackle Rogers Preserve as well. Otherwise we will do that next.

Bring clippers/loppers, rakes and weed-whackers or something else to take out the weeds. You may want to wear gloves and carry a bottle of water. Children are welcome with their parents. We’ll be done by noon.

Email wwbikeped@gmail.com with any questions, and feel free to bring some friends.

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JORBA Maintains Mercer County Park Trails

Wednesday, March 21 by JerryFoster

On a beautiful sunny (once the fog burned off) Saturday, 13 volunteers organized by the Jersey Off Road Bicycle Association (JORBA) met to re-route an eroded section of the Red Trail near the tennis courts in Mercer County Park. These  dedicated off-road bicyclists know that conservation and maintenance are part of responsible mountain biking. Thanks to Mick Tormey of West Windsor for organizing the work, and to all the volunteers from New Jersey and Pennsylvania who showed that they care about our trails!

Mountain bikers, check out the JORBA web site to find opportunities to maintain trails all over New Jersey. Public – private partnerships, like JORBA working with Mercer County Park officials, allow everyone to enjoy our public assets, and save our taxpayers a few dollars along the way.

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Work on Mountain-Bike Trails in Mercer County Park

Thursday, March 15 by silvia

From our friends at SMART/Jorba (the volunteers who maintain the off-road bike trails in Mercer County Park):

We will be holding our first trail day of the year on Saturday, March 17 and have a couple of projects planned. Depending on park approval we will be doing a re-route of the red trail east of the tennis courts. Building the trail and re-mediating the old damaged sections hould keep us busy for at least one trail day, if not more.
As is customary, we will meet at the Marina parking lot at 9 a.m. Please bring something to drink. We will have tools and gloves (some bug spray may not be a bad idea).

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Plainsboro and Hopewell Boro Discuss Biking and Walking

Tuesday, February 7 by JerryFoster

The WWBPA’s mission is “To promote bicycling and walking in West Windsor Township and neighboring communities,” and this past week we’ve worked with residents of Plainsboro and Hopewell Boro to encourage them to become more bicycle and pedestrian friendly.

On February 1, WWBPA trustees met with Plainsboro residents, a township official and interested WWBPA members at the Plainsboro Library to discuss the issues. Topics included biking on the road vs. paths, the upcoming closings of the Rt 1 circle at Washington and the jughandle at Harrison, bike commuters to the Forrestal campus, biking and walking connections to West Windsor on the PSE&G right of way and Cranbury Road, biking and walking to school and many others. Various ideas were presented on how best to encourage biking and walking, including a having a bike rodeo at the annual Founders Day event and organizing a community bike ride.

On February 6 at the Hopewell Borough Council meeting, a resident advocate invited bicyclists from the area to support bike lanes on CR 518. A dozen bicyclists, including a WWBPA trustee and 2 members, showed up to support  the bike lanes as well as a Complete Streets resolution for the borough and for Mercer County. Representatives from New Jersey Bike Walk Coalition,  Princeton Free Wheelers, Lawrence Hopewell Trail, New Jersey Bike Exchange and the Battle Against Hunger Ride also spoke in support. We hope to see Hopewell Borough adopt the next Complete Streets resolution in Mercer County!

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Trolley Line Trail Link Completed

Thursday, January 5 by JerryFoster

The missing link between the South Mill Road crossing of the Trolley Line Trail and the section bordering the Dataram property was finished just before Christmas – what a busy year for bicycle and pedestrian improvements! Thanks to the township and county for all their great work in 2011.

The subject of a previous post a few weeks ago, the crossing features a rapid flashing beacon (flashing strobe lights), high visibility crosswalk paint (the thickness of the stripes makes it easy to see) and a pedestrian-activated signal button for easy crossing.

One thing bicyclists in the bike lanes on South Mill Rd should keep in mind: If someone is crossing, the bicyclist must stop before the crosswalk, just as the cars must stop.  Enjoy the new trail;  now it’s easier than ever to get between Rabbit Hill Road and Penn Lyle Road on the Trolley Line Trail, including access to Community Park.

 

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Penn Lyle Road Improvements Completed

Thursday, December 15 by JerryFoster

It’s a challenge to keep up with all the improvements that have been completed this year, including the long-planned Penn Lyle Road project, which includes repaving, bike lanes and sidewalk connections. Thanks to the township for getting this done, even including porous pavement for the sidewalks!

Penn Lyle Road is a key connector between WW-P High School South and the bike lanes on Woodmere Way and Village Road, as well as to the Trolley Line Trail, a multi-use path that connects to Community Park and on to the bike lanes on Rabbit Hill Road, Bennington Drive and Southfield Road.

Including the new multi-use path along South Post Road, you can now bike from Mercer County Park, at either the Mercer Oaks Golf Course or at the Caspersen Rowing Center, to Village Elementary School or Grover Middle School, and on to McCaffrey’s grocery store, all via bike lanes or multi-use paths.  There are few gaps left in the biking or sidewalk network in the eastern part of the township.

Naturally, experienced bicyclists don’t regard these improvements as necessary, since they (we, actually) are comfortable driving our bikes in traffic, following the laws like anyone else on the road. For casual bicyclists, however, the bike lanes and paths provide the extra perception of safety that enables them to bike places they would not feel comfortable reaching without those facilities.

Please keep in mind that there are some things to watch out for when biking in a bike lane or on a path. Whenever there’s an intersection or driveway, many drivers  pay attention to the middle of the road to look for a car approaching, but may not look to the edge where the bike lane is, and so may not notice a bicyclist entering the intersection or driveway. Also, if cars are backed up, someone turning through a gap in the cars may not see an approaching bicyclist (or a pedestrian on the sidewalk at a driveway), since the driver is paying attention to the gap in cars but not yet to the space beyond. Just keep an eye out for these common causes of crashes, and you’ll be able to avoid them.

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Alexander Road S-Curve Completed

Wednesday, December 7 by JerryFoster

Among the amazing number of recent achievements, the Alexander S-Curve ranks high.  Starting at the Delaware and Raritan Canal, the new roadway includes bike lanes on both sides and a sidewalk on the south side of the road. The road was the site of a fatality several years ago, and the construction was delayed to avoid concurrence with the Meadow Road project. Thanks to the township for their very busy year and all the great results!

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Discovering Historic West Windsor By Bike

Sunday, November 27 by silvia

Riders learn more about "War of the Worlds"Eagle Scout Paul Ligeti sent us this report on our Nov. 13 ride along the route through town that he developed, mapped and marked. About 15 people participated–a perfect size given the stops along the way for explanations of the sites.

The rescheduled inaugural ride of the West Windsor Interpretive Historic Bike Trail took place on Nov. 13. Unlike the wintry weather of the original date, we were met with a mild, pleasant fall afternoon.  I was happy to see the riders enjoy the trail, which is the result of my Eagle Scout project in West Windsor’s Troop 66 and two years of work.  The 11 mile-long trail, which I designed with historical and traffic considerations in mind, winds through much of the town. My troop and I laid red plaques in front of many historically significant sites, including the Dutch Neck Presbyterian Church, the Schenck Farmstead and Grovers Mill.

The highlight of Sunday’s ride was a stop near  Grovers Mill to hear a local resident regale us with a vivid description of the days in his youth during the infamous October 1938 War of the Worlds radio broadcast. He also recounted subsequent commemorations of the event attended by the likes of governors and the writer of the original broadcast.

Anyone interested in riding the trail, or just learning more about the history of West Windsor, is invited to check out the website http://wwhistoricbiker.weebly.com/.  As an online companion to the trail, it provides a map of the route and historical background on the sites with the markers and dozens of others, as well.

Thank you WWBPA for arranging the inaugural ride.

And thank you, Paul, for creating it!

Riders meet at the kiosk in Dutch Neck that explains the trail

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South Post Road Multi-Use Trail Arrives

Wednesday, November 23 by JerryFoster

This past week saw the pavement laid on the new trail along South Post Road from Village Road to Conover Road. This trail will see heavy use by the rowers at Caspersen Rowing Center,  who do their warmup runs along this stretch of road, which borders the Mercer Oaks golf course. We also hope to see families use it as they head to the ballfields at the corner of Conover Road. Thanks to the township and county for working together on a grant for this trail!

Caspersen Rowing Center is run by the Princeton National Rowing Association (PNRA), which was recently named 2011 USRowing Club of the Year by USRowing, the United States’ governing organization for Olympic and World Cup rowing. Located on Mercer Lake in Mercer County Park,  Caspersen Rowing Center is an Olympic and U.S. Women’s National Team Training Center, home to the Mercer Junior Rowing Club for high school students and the Mercer Master’s  Rowing Program for adults, as well as to area private school rowing programs. Mercer’s programs have many members in common with the WWBPA, including this author’s spouse and daughter. More information can be found at rowpnra.org.

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Help Clear the Millstone Trails

Friday, September 16 by silvia

The WWBPA needs your help to clear the Millstone trails of the damage done by Irene.

Join us at 1 p.m. Sunday Sept. 25 in the Millstone Preserve parking lot (Millstone Road). Bring loppers, rakes, and (if you have one) a gas chain saw or trimmer. Don’t forget gloves and bug spray!

Consider it an extension of National Public Lands Day, which is Saturday, Sept. 24. Entrance fees at all national parks across the country will be waived that day. For list of national parks in New Jersey, click here. The day is also a huge nationwide volunteer event; help clean up and maintain our public lands (and that’s more than just the national parks. Several volunteer events are planned for our area; the list is here.

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Benches Wanted — Where?

Monday, September 12 by silvia

Where would you put public benches in West Windsor?

The WWBPA wants to install some benches around West Windsor.  Are there any places you wish you could have  a contemplative rest or  ease your weary feet before walking just that bit further?  Be it the Trolley Line Trail, one of our many wooded preserves, or somewhere else, we welcome your suggestions.

All ideas will be discussed by the WWBPA and with other interested parties.  We will keep you informed on progress. Suggestions welcomed on the style of benches too.

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Upcoming Events

March 9   ******* Annual Membership Meeting ******* 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Main Mtg Rm A). Guest Speaker TBA.

March      Membership Drive. Become a member/Renew your membership today and support our local community.

March 12  WWBPA participating at the St Anthony’s Health Fair 1:30-2:30pm in the gym at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Hightstown.

April 13     Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

April 15     Scholarship applications due for Graduating High School Seniors

May          Look for opening Season of WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

May 11     Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

Jun 8       Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

July 13     Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

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