2018 “Do 6” Award Winners

PA Route 6 National Heritage Area has announced the winners of this year’s “Do 6” Awards. These individuals, organizations, businesses, and corporations exemplify the mission of the PA Route 6 Alliance to protect, preserve, and enhance the scenic, cultural, historical, and recreational resources of Pennsylvania’s northern tier. To find out more about the winners listed below, click here.

Heritage Partnership Award
Winner: Bradford County Veterans Memorial Park Association

Heritage Tourism Award
Winner: Venango General Store

Artisan Of The Year
Winner: Curt Weinhold, Photographer

Heritage Leadership Award
Winner: Dan Glotz, Warren County Planner

Heritage Community Of The Year
Winner: White Mills, Wayne County

 

The First 9/11 Trail Ride Was Completed in 23 Days

Starting on April 11 (at the Pentagon), the September 11 National Memorial Trail Alliance led the first-ever complete bike ride connecting the three 9-11 memorial locations. The inaugural ride encompassed 23-days and
covered almost 1,300 miles. The small group of core riders, all Board Members, followed the current mapped route, increased awareness of the Trail, and supported the local communities currently making improvements on segments of the alignment.

“After many years of dedicated volunteer efforts and support in dozens of communities, we’re looking forward to sharing a Trail designed to commemorate the tragic events of 9/11 and to celebrate what’s best about America,” said Thomas Baxter, Executive Director of the Sept. 11th National Memorial Trail.

Events and press activities were set up each day with local partners provided opportunities to learn more about the September 11th National Memorial Trail. The Organization’s Board Members with the most direct ties to each memorial were involved with activities at the Pentagon Memorial, Flight 93 National Memorial, and the September 11 National Memorial and Museum in New York City. During the ride, the group biked on a range of local and regional trails that make up the 911 Trail, visited National and State parks, and stopped at other locations on the route that honor the memory of those who lost their lives that day.

Tim Brown, 911 Trail Board, Retired FDNY Firefighter, and founding member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security “After September 11th, in every firehouse around NYC, the words “Never Forget” became the mantra. These words have special meaning to us, but in particular, they mean Never Forget the individual lives that were lost that day. Never Forget who they each were. Never Forget their parents, their spouses, their children their legacy. So when you ride or walk this Trail, keep these people in your thoughts and prayers. Never Forget.”

You can find the same trail routes that they took here and complete the 23-day trail route yourself! 

*Click on the map above to view a larger version. 

Financial Trail Ride Supporters
REI, Point Park University, Crystal Steel Fabricators, Dominion Energy, CycleLife HQ, PA DCNR, Alta Planning + Design, Laird Recreation & Land Planning, C&O Canal Trust, Doylestown Bike Works, Rothrock Outfitters, Capital Trails Coalition, The Circuit, National Park Service, New Jersey State Park Service, New Jersey Forest Fire Service, Morris County Parks, National 9-11 Memorial and Museum, Friends of Liberty State Park, New Jersey Bike & Walk Coalition, Great Allegheny Passage, Main Line Canal Greenway, Schuylkill River Greenways, East Coast Greenway, Delaware and Lehigh National Heritage Corridor, Morris Area Freewheelers Foundation, Washington-Rochambeau National Historic Trail, Maryland DOT/MARC, Berlin (PA) Borough, Northampton County (PA).

 

Sheepskin Trail Continues to Develop

Point Marion, PA (May 7, 2018)  The Fayette County Commissioners were joined by many officials, volunteers, and partner organizations this morning to break ground on the Point Marion Segment Project of the Sheepskin Trail.  Construction of this segment, the southernmost of the trail, will complete 1.7 miles of the Sheepskin Trail beginning at the West Virginia border, north through Springhill Township, and into Point Marion Borough to the Cheat River.  Following its completion, the Point Marion Segment Project will provide a direct connection to the 48-mile Mon River Trail System in West Virginia. 

“This is an important first step in opening the door to the positive economic impacts a recreational attraction like this trail can provide to our communities and Fayette County,” said Fayette County Commissioner Vince Vicites.  “By connecting to the established trail systems to the south, we’re looking to replicate the success stories we’ve seen occurring in other communities in the region who have embraced the economic opportunities trails and their users provide.”   

Construction of the Point Marion Segment Project will include installation of trail head and gateway signs, bollards, gates, road crossing signs and striping, split rail fencing, trail surface and landscaping, parking and trail access, including ADA accessibility.  “In addition to the economic benefits, the segment provides opportunities for our residents to be active, use an alternative transportation option, and take advantage of the existing borough and state recreational amenities located along this greenway,” said Fayette County Commissioner Dave Lohr.  “We’re only 9 miles from the economic hub of Morgantown, and more investments will be made to provide services to trail users and visitors alike.”

Adding to the celebratory event was the announcement that Fayette County has secured funding to construct the Sheepskin Trail’s Nilan Road Segment Project through the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission’s (SPC) Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside (TA) Program.  Working with their Metropolitan Planning Organization partners at SPC, Fayette County and its Sheepskin Trail development partner, the National Road Heritage Corridor, secured $906,360 in TA Program funding to construct approximately two additional miles of the trail from the end point of the Point Marion Segment Project, across the Cheat River and eastward along the abandoned Baltimore & Ohio rail line in Springhill Township.  This segment, running parallel with Nilan Road, will offer trail users opportunities to view remnants of and learn about the Cheat River Coke Works. Fayette County was previously awarded $96,000 in funding though SPC’s SMART Transportation Program to complete the design and engineering phases of the Nilan Road Segment Project

“The collaboration, teamwork, and partnerships at the local, state, and regional levels are an essential reason we’re here today celebrating this achievement,” said Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Bureau of Recreation and Conservation Director Tom Ford.  “The trail has been identified as a key gap in our state and national trail system, and we are thrilled to start construction on this piece.”

Once completed, the 34-mile Sheepskin Trail will fill a missing link to a nationally significant trail system, connecting the WV Mon River Trail System at its southern terminus to the Great Allegheny Passage at the northern terminus near Dunbar.  Crossing through the heart of Fayette County, the trail will connect schools, recreational facilities and municipal parks, and will link together the Youghiogheny, Monongahela, and Cheat River watersheds – creating a significant greenway of historical, cultural and natural resources.  The trail will alternate between a “rail-trail” and a “rail-with-trail” system following the old Penn Central line, the old Baltimore & Ohio/CSX line, and an active short line, the Southwest Pennsylvania Railroad. When completed, the trail will connect many communities within Fayette County such as Dunbar, Mount Braddock, Lemont Furnace, Uniontown, Hopwood, Fairchance, Smithfield, Cornish, Outcrop, Gans, Lake Lynn and Point Marion.

“Fayette County and its residents are really fortunate to have the quality and amount of interested partners working together to complete all 34 miles of the Sheepskin”, echoed Fayette County Commissioner Angela Zimmerlink. “I appreciate the efforts of the project partners as they continue to promote transportation alternatives, which are essential for creating more livable communities and growing the region’s economy.” 

SPC’s TA Program provides funding for programs and projects including on- and off-road pedestrian and bicycle facilities; infrastructure projects for improving non-driver access to public transportation and enhanced mobility; community improvement activities; environmental mitigation; recreational trail program projects; and, safe routes to school projects.

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The Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission (SPC) is the region’s forum for collaboration, planning and public decision-making. As the designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the ten-county region including the City of Pittsburgh and the counties of Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Lawrence, Washington, and Westmoreland, SPC is responsible for planning and prioritizing the use of all state and federal transportation funds allocated to the region. As the Local Development District (LDD) and Economic Development District for Southwestern Pennsylvania (as designated by the U.S. Appalachian Regional Commission and the U.S. Department of Commerce), SPC establishes regional economic development priorities and provides a wide range of public services to the region.

The National Road Heritage Corridor (NRHC) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and one of 12 heritage areas under the DCNR Pennsylvania Heritage Area Program.  This designation represents recognition of the Historic National Road’s – the Nation’s first federally funded highway built in the early1800’s –  wealth of historic, cultural, scenic and recreational resources and amenities. The NRHC works with local, state and national partners to develop and enhance the visitor experience along the corridor and in the region to create opportunity for economic impact and growth through tourism and greater well being and livability for residents.

In late 2010, the Fayette County Commissioners adopted a resolution naming the National Road Heritage Corridor (NRHC) its Sheepskin Trail development management partner. Since that time, the NRHC has been working to identify and secure funding to continue the design, land acquisition and construction of this important recreational asset.

Preservation Workshop and Awards in Pleasantville

The Pleasantville Presbyterian Church at 145 East State Street in Pleasantville will be the site for this year’s Preservation Workshop and Awards on Saturday, May 19, hosted by the Oil Region Alliance.

The Workshop will include morning and afternoon sessions on historic preservation topics, such as historic metal truss bridges in Pennsylvania, historic district guidelines, gravemarker preservation at Neilltown Church Cemetery, preservation efforts at Historic Pithole City, architectural walking tours, and much more.

The Preservation Awards ceremony will begin at 5:00 p.m. with dinner. Six local groups and property owners will be presented with awards to recognize their efforts in the preservation of historic properties throughout the Oil Region.

Full-day registration for the Workshop and Awards, including lunch and dinner, is $40/person for Oil Region Alliance members and $50/person for non-members. High school and college students may attend the workshop sessions and lunch for $10/person. Programs with registration forms are available at www.oilregion.org and the Oil Region Alliance office at 217 Elm Street, Oil City. Registration for lunch and/or dinner is due May 10 by submission of registration forms to Jennifer Burden at Oil Region Alliance, 217 Elm Street, Oil City 16301 or at jburden@oilregion.org.

For more information about the event, please contact Ms. Burden at 677-3152, Extension 116 or jburden@oilregion.org.

Celebrate Pennsylvania Small Business Week in PA’s Heritage Areas

This year Pennsylvania Small Business Week is April 29 – May 5th. It is a part of a nation-wide event recognizing the contributions of Pennsylvania’s small business owners to our communities and economy. Pennsylvania is home to one million small businesses that employ 2.5 million people.

Explore one (or more) of PA’s 12 heritage areas this week and support a few of the many small businesses that are scattered throughout. Check out our interactive map to help map out your destinations.

Celebrate Earth Day with Rivers of Steel

Pittsburgh’s rivers are teeming with life and many of these organisms cannot be seen with the naked eye. Spend some time at the Rivers of Steel National Heritage Area’s booths at these Earth Day events and visit with their staff. You’ll observe freshwater plankton under a microscope and learn more about their region’s freshwater ecosystems.

Pittsburgh Earth Day – Paint the Square Green
Friday, April 20, 11 am – 6 pm @ Market Square

Pittsburgh Parks Earth Day
Saturday, April 21, 12 – 4 pm @ the Frick Environmental Center

Earth Day Clean-up

Celebrate Earth Day with Susquehanna Heritage at the Zimmerman Center for Heritage on April 22nd, 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm. Help plant native plant species at their rain garden, participate in a riverfront clean-up, or remove invasive plant species along their trail to Native Lands County Park. It’s a great chance to spend a Spring day along the river, make the Zimmerman Centar an even nicer place to visit and learn how to identify native and invasive plants. Come dressed for outside fun and bring along gloves. Extra gloves will be available, and they will have snacks and drinks on hand.

Advanced registration requested. There are no fees for this event. Register online HERE, or call (717) 252-0229 ext. 7 or email mgansel@susquehnnaheritage.org.

Venango County Free Museum Day

This is an opportunity to get to know your local Venango County Museums. On Saturday, April 14 from 10 am to 4 pm the museums listed below will be open to the public at no charge in the Oil Region National Heritage Area. This is an opportunity to bring your family out and discover these gems of the local community. Please contact the museums for directions and additional information.

DeBence Antique Music World

The Venango Museum of Art, Science, & Industry

The Venango County Historical Society

Celebrate 5th Fridays with HeritagePA

Spring is about to be sprung! Shake off your cabin fever by exploring through PA’s 12 heritage areas. Use this extra Friday to take in the history, heritage, and creativity of Pennsylvania while supporting local businesses and organizations. For some ideas, check out these four events below happening along the National Road, PA Route 6, Delaware & Lehigh, and Oil Region heritage areas.

National Road Heritage Corridor:
Visit the Towns Along the National Road & Shop Local

PA Route 6 Heritage Corridor:
Discover Local Art at the Artisan Trail Traveling Exhibit

Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor:
Get Your Tail on the Trail

Oil Region National Heritage Area:
Explore the Drake Well Museum and Park

Here are the upcoming 5th Fridays happening through 2018: June 29, 2018; August 31, 2018; November 30, 2018. Look out for more information and events on these dates in the future. 

The 14th Annual Maple Weekend: March 17 – 18

The 14th Annual Maple Weekend, March 17 – 18, 2018, in Potter and Tioga Counties is a tribute to maple you won’t want to miss. Download the brochure to map out your route through the 17 maple farms that are participating this year throughout the Lumber Heritage Region and PA Route 6 Heritage Corridor. Each farm offers free demonstrations, tours, sampling, and much more. Discover the different types of processes used in maple sugaring and all kinds of maple products. For more information, click here.