Public Info

Nature Lovers and Hiking Enthusiasts Invited to Join Union County’s Trail Steward Program

Union County’s volunteer Adopt-a-Trail Stewards help preserve miles of rustic trails that wind through County parks, like this one in the Watchung Reservation.

Union County, NJ — The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders invites residents to join the Adopt-a-Trail volunteer program and help with trail conservation and preservation projects in Union County parks.

“Our Adopt-a-Trail Stewards enable visitors to enjoy miles of rustic trails in our County parks,” said Freeholder Chairman Sergio Granados. “Their work truly has a ripple effect on the whole community, and they set a wonderful example of giving back.”

Residents can find out more about the program and learn basic trail conservation skills by attending a beginner training session on Saturday, November 10 at the Trailside Nature & Science Center in Mountainside, from 8:30 a.m. until 10:15 a.m.

The beginner session is free but pre-registration is required online at Light refreshments will be served.

At the training session, beginners will learn the basics of trail maintenance and stewardship, including how to read a trail map and follow a blazed trail.

After the beginner session, current Adopt-a-Trail Stewards will hold their annual General Meeting. Beginners who would like to become Adopt-a-Trail Stewards must stay for this session, which begins at 10:30 a.m. and concludes at 1:15 p.m.

The General Meeting will include updates on current trail projects and a presentation by Peter Dolan of the New York – New Jersey Trail Conference. Titled “Making and Maintaining Trails That Last,” the presentation will address the many factors involved in creating sustainable trails.

All Adopt-a-Trail Stewards are required to attend an annual meeting, and commit to monitoring and maintaining their trail for a minimum of two years. Trail Stewards are also required to submit quarterly reports.

Residents who cannot make a two-year commitment as Trail Stewards are welcome to join a scheduled Saturday Trail Work Day.

Saturday Trail Work Days take place from 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., once a month from March to December, depending on weather. No experience is necessary. Saturday Trail Work projects are supervised by staff. The next two scheduled dates are Saturday, November 3 and Saturday, December 1.

For more information about becoming an Adopt-a-Park Trail Steward, or to sign up for a Saturday Trail Work Day, email Betty Ann Kelly, Union County Department of Parks and Recreation, or call 908-789-3683.

For all Union County programs and services visit, call the Public Info Line, 877-424-1234, email or use the online Contact Form.

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For all Union County programs and services visit, call the Public Info Line, 877-424-1234, email or use the online Contact Form.

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