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Millennium Reserve Tour with National Park Service director Jon Jarvis, a set on Flickr.
 Before you read further: GITy Up! registration closes June 30. Get it done! Enjoyed touring the IDNR’s Millennium Reserve projects with National Park Service director Jon Jarvis yesterday. Jon’s a lifer NPS employee who’s had nearly every job with the agency: he’s cut trail, led visitor tours, been a park biologist, fought forest fires and dragged tires out of creeks. You want him to be in charge of America’s best idea. Jon’s been touring projects included in the president’s America’s Great Outdoors initiative. One of them is also in the Millennium Reserve: the Cal-Sag Trail. NPS Rivers, Trails & Conservation Assistance coordinator Diane Banta invited me along to talk to Jon about it.
He’s a trails guy all the way through, knows well how transformative they can be and how dang hard to get built. On both counts, Jon recognizes that the Cal-Sag Trail is a phenomenon: the transformation of the Cal-Sag corridor will be game changing. And the speed of its development is unheard of in Illinois—the Cal-Sag Trail Coalition’s first meeting was Fall of 2004. If construction dollars come through Enhancements or TIGER, ribbon cutting could be Fall 2013. Enjoy the pics! And the puppies!
Orienteering. NPS director Jon Jarvis in the navy sportcoatJerry Adelmann explaining why a port authority owns a golf courseThe port authority's understandably touchy about the golf courseJon Jarvis (from right), IDNR's Diane Tecic, Openlands' Jerry Adelmann, and Chicago Park District's Zhanna Yermakov at Big Marsh.

Millennium Reserve Tour with National Park Service director Jon Jarvis, a set on Flickr.

Before you read further: GITy Up! registration closes June 30. Get it done!

Enjoyed touring the IDNR’s Millennium Reserve projects with National Park Service director Jon Jarvis yesterday. Jon’s a lifer NPS employee who’s had nearly every job with the agency: he’s cut trail, led visitor tours, been a park biologist, fought forest fires and dragged tires out of creeks. You want him to be in charge of America’s best idea.

Jon’s been touring projects included in the president’s America’s Great Outdoors initiative. One of them is also in the Millennium Reserve: the Cal-Sag Trail. NPS Rivers, Trails & Conservation Assistance coordinator Diane Banta invited me along to talk to Jon about it.

He’s a trails guy all the way through, knows well how transformative they can be and how dang hard to get built. On both counts, Jon recognizes that the Cal-Sag Trail is a phenomenon: the transformation of the Cal-Sag corridor will be game changing. And the speed of its development is unheard of in Illinois—the Cal-Sag Trail Coalition’s first meeting was Fall of 2004. If construction dollars come through Enhancements or TIGER, ribbon cutting could be Fall 2013.

Enjoy the pics! And the puppies!

Meeting National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis today

NPS Director John Jarvis

We’re big fans of Director Jarvis, and we’re honored to tour Chicagoland’s Burnham Greenway and the Cal-Sag Trail with him and NPS River & Trails’ Diane Banta today. Both trails are part of America’s Great Outdoors, the Obama administration’s initiative to create more opportunity for healthy, active outdoor living.

Also, Making Trails Count! project passed a mini-milestone today—our first $1000 raised! Trails for Illinois and our Making Trails Count partners—Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, University of Illinois Office of Recreation and Park Resources, and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, are raring to change the game of trail building in Illinois.

Add to the momentum—imagine what raising trails as a state priority worth to you. Then become a Making Trails Count partner!

Online fundraising for Making Trails Count for Illinois!

National Park Service Rivers & Trails Conservation Assistance Program invests $1000 in our vision

Every home a trailhead!

The National Park Service’s Rivers and Trails Conservation Assistance program has invested $1000 in our vision of an interconnected network of trails across the state of Illinois.

We have long benefited from the expertise and energy of the program’s State
Coordinator
, and the partnership that has developed with the RTCA program.

We’ll use these dollars for outreach. We are experienced, creative, and
on-fire over trails…but the trail advocacy, planning and programming help
we can bring to counties and communities is largely unknown across this
very large state.

Add your support to NPS’s!

This is very much a ground floor investment in a grand opportunity to raise
the quality of life in Illinois, to make every home a trailhead. We look forward to the work ahead with the National Park Service to make Illinois a great trails state!