Greenway Conservancy Partnering With River Trails Cleanup For Earth Day Event
Published: April 14th, 2023
By: Kelli Miller

Greenway Conservancy partnering with River Trails Cleanup for Earth Day event Chenango Greenway Conservancy River Trail Cleanup volunteers give their thumbs up before hiking the trails to remove garbage and debris in 2022. (Submitted photo)

NORWICH — The Chenango River Trails Cleanup is scheduled from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Earth Day, April 22 at 33 Borden Avenue in Weiler Park, and is hosted again this year by the Chenango County Environmental Management Council (EMC), in partnership with the Chenango Greenway Conservancy, Chenango County Soil and Water Conservation District, and Friends of Rogers.

Chenango Greenway Conservancy Board Member and Chenango County Planning and Development Planner Matt Gladstone said, “We moved the clean up day to Earth Day as it’s earlier in the year, making it easier to remove garbage instead of trying to find it later in overgrown grass."

“Volunteers will meet at Weiler Park and then we’ll divide into groups for light trail monitoring, removing sticks, and picking up any left over garbage from last year. We’ve partnered with Casella Waste Management who are providing bags, pickers, and final removal of the garbage,” Gladstone said.

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“Greenway board member volunteers on the trail will include Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), engineers, and a trained veterinarian, who have many different skill sets amongst them and if needed, will handle any injured or deceased animal along the trail, moving people away to take care of the situation at hand.

“Our 2022 trail cleanup was very successful. We picked up 1,250 pounds of litter, which included tires and scrap metal that had found its way to the trails, by stream, or people littering along the trails,” he added.

Chenango County Department of Planning and Development Planner Allison Yacano said, “The trails are a vital part of our community. These trails provide recreational opportunities for avid outdoors people of all ages. By keeping the trails cleaned and maintained, it helps to keep the environment sustainable and able to be enjoyed for years to come."

“All waterways are connected in some sort of fashion. If trash gets into our waterways, both humans and animals suffer consequences. If we can step in before it gets that far, our small community like Chenango County can have a positive effect on larger communities in our region,” she added.

The Riverview property is a five-acre parcel, gifted in 2019 by Patsy Smith, as she wished the property be conserved as public and open space. Besides the trail clean up, additional projects on the property will include the installation of concrete benches, a new gravel parking area, and crushed-stone walking paths.

Chenango Greenway Conservancy Chairperson Sharon Pelosi said, “We’re a volunteer organization and are always excited to welcome new members and volunteers. Also, let us know if there is an issue out there, such as downed trees, as we have over 500 acres of property to keep up on and it can be a lot. You can report to us on the website at"

“One of this year's additional projects include the area of Three Amigos, located on East River Road, behind the veterinarian clinic, where we’ve partnered with Upper Susquehanna Coalition to restore wetlands and wetland habitats, retaining storm waters, and improving habitat.

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“We also partnered with the county and built a new entrance to the Stone Quarry off of Upper Ravine Road, and are hopeful to add one more parking area for service this year. Once the projects are complete, we look forward to celebrating in July with a grand opening to honor and thank Patsy Smith,” said Pelosi.

North and south trails such as Greenway Spur, Snake Trail, The Switchback, Upper Ravine, Bunker Hill and Poison Ivy Connection are just a few of the trails to be found at the Chenango Greenway. Trails are open dawn to dusk.

This year's third annual New York State Mountain Bike Series for adults will occur in August as well.

According to, past achievements include an article in the June 2009 NYS Conservationist magazine noticing a handful of successful local efforts in creating recreational trails in communities, and volunteers helping to construct and maintain eight trail miles along the Chenango River.

Also included on the Chenango Greenway site are past recipients of the award. Past award winners include the New York Recreational Trail Grant and the 2010 recipient of a Kodak American Greenways Grant sponsoring a regional trail conference that focused on creating the Chenango Canal Heritage Trail.

History of this greatly used recreational destination go back to the early 1900s, when West Hill was an industrial stone quarry, largely barren of trees and other green spaces. After the quarry closed, nature returned and transformed the scarred landscape into one of the most probable areas for hiking, biking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, bird watching, and being one with nature.

For river cleanup registration forms and additional information, contact