VAL RIESS PARK TRAIL WINS NATIONAL AWARD
Val Riess Park Multi-Use Path was recently named by the American Trails' Coalition for Recreational Trails to receive the Tom Petri Annual Achievement Award in recognition of its outstanding use of trail funding.
As one of eight projects throughout the country receiving awards, the Val Riess Park Multi-Use Path was honored in the Community Linkage category for the milestone it represents to the community of St. Bernard as the parish turns from recovery to focus on projects to improve the quality of life for residents.
The award was presented at a ceremony and reception on Capitol Hill. Receiving the award on behalf of the parish was St. Bernard Parish Chief Administrative Officer, Michael Gorbaty. Also attending the ceremony were Susan Klees, local bicycle advocate representing Bike St. Bernard, and Deborah Jan Fagan, Grants Coordinator Consultant to St. Bernard Parish.
"Everyone in St. Bernard Parish should be proud of this prestigious honor because of what it signifies," said Parish President, David Peralta, "But it is only one of many projects the Administration and local advocates have been working on to move this parish forward." Susan Klees added, "There are many, many people, both in the Administration and throughout the community, who are responsible for the successful completion of this project. The Parish staff, engineers, and contractors worked very hard to ensure the project was completed before some of our funding expired, and the path truly is an asset to our parish."
The 0.9 mile lighted trail for pedestrians and bicycles was funded by the Federal Highway Administration Recreational Trails Program, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Land and Water Conservation Fund Program administered by the Louisiana Office of State Parks, the Murphy Oil Cy Pres Committee, and St. Bernard Parish Government. More on the project can be found on the American Trails website at http://www.americantrails.org/awards/CRT15awards/index.html.
Pictured at the Awards Ceremony in Washington, D.C., are (left to right) Derrick Crandall, President, American Recreation Federation; Michael Gorbaty, St. Bernard Parish Chief Administrative Officer; Susan Klees, Bike St. Bernard; Deborah Jan Fagan, Grants Coordinator Consultant to St. Bernard Parish; and Marianne Fowler, Senior Strategist for Policy Advocacy at Rails to Trail Conservancy.