Category Archives: Uncategorized

Sculpture for the MRG

 

 

“Wheels”                                                    “Steel Umbrella”

Lebanon Recreation and AVA  Gallery are pleased to announce the results of our Call to Artists public art sculpture competition.  The winners: “Wheels” by artists Susan K. Johnson, Alicia Zbehlik and Kathy Petuck and “Steel Umbrella” by artists Justin O’Rourke and Margaret Jacobs

Winning sculptures will be fabricated by June 30th and installed by mid July in time for the Grand Opening of the Mascoma River Greenway in late July.

Special recognition is also extended to submitting artists for their thoughtful and creative designs:

  • Historical Collage Poles: Artists Cindy Heath, Margaret Sheehan and Carla Kimball
  • Lebanon Labyrinth: Artist Allison Zito
  • Railroad Spike Tree: Artist Greg Stott
  • Spikes and Spokes: Artist Debra Jayne
  • Stories to Tell: Artists Margit Berman and Jeremy McDonald
  • Walking on Nails: Artists Scott Wunderle, Patrick Jarvis, Courtney Venable, Lauren Ingersoll     
  • Water Stop: Artist Clive Maloney

These entries are currently on view at AVA Gallery

New, and Better, Way to Travel

AlanMRGWinterBridge

We enjoy hearing stories of how the MRG is being used, for getting to work, to the grocery store, to CCBA when a road is closed, or, in this case, getting home from the eye doctor.  Thanks to Alan Schnur for sharing his story!

My regular eye exam on the Miracle Mile in January required drops to be put in my eyes. I, therefore, could not drive, and needed an alternative way to reach my appointment and return home. I considered several options: 1) asking a friend to drive me, wait, and drive me home, 2) take a taxi, or 3) take the Advance Transit Red Line bus from Colburn Park to the Miracle Mile. I decided to take the AT bus to be sure I arrived on time.

After leaving the doctor’s office, wearing my sunglasses, I remembered an exciting previous experience trying to cross to the bus stop on Route 4 without a crosswalk. Not wishing to repeat that experience, I thought of the Mascoma River Greenway. It took a few tries to find the unmarked path near the Price Chopper parking lot that descends to the Greenway, but when I found the path, getting down to the trail was easy as the snow was already packed. Once on the Greenway, I could easily walk to the recently completed bridge over the Mascoma River, behind The Timken Company — the one with the fantastic view over the Mascoma River. It seemed quite a few people had been walking the trail as the path through the snow was nicely packed. After crossing the bridge, I reached the paved section of the Greenway and found it groomed for walkers (with half the trail left with the original snow cover for cross country skiers).

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It was a delightful walk through the quiet, peaceful, beautiful white wonderland. (And healthy too, since I was out in the open air and didn’t have to look around for anyone coughing or sneezing during the January high flu transmission season.) At my slow pace, it took about 40 minutes to reach the High Street end of the Greenway, with the time passing by very quickly. Almost too quickly.

The Mascoma River Greenway is now a fourth, and I think better option for going to my eye doctor. Once the snow melts, the trip will become even more convenient when traveling by bicycle. As promised, the Greenway is a great resource for the Lebanon community!

Alan Schnur

Lebanon

Call for Artists

Call to Artists flyerArtists are invited and encouraged to apply to participate in a program to design, fabricate, and install public sculptural artworks for long-term display along Lebanon’s Rail Trail.  Installations will be located on sites between the bridge over the Mascoma River at the downtown Lebanon tunnel (eastern end) and Glen Road in West Lebanon (western end).  Artists are encouraged to select themes related to Lebanon’s history, geography, natural environment, recreational activities, or railroad activities.  Winning artists will be granted temporary access to the studios in the AVA Gallery and Art Center’s new Bente Torjusen West Sculptural Studies Building at 9 Bank Street, Lebanon.

Interested artists can submit this Intent to Submit:Intent to submit fillable

See attached document for more details.Call to Artists_LebRailTrail

Check out a few examples of Spike Art!

Visit our Co-Organizer, AVA Gallery

First Snow!

A report from Rainie Kelly –
MRGrainieSnow
By the time my husband and I reached the Mascoma River Greenway for an early-morning walk in yesterday’s snow, it was evident that many outdoor enthusiasts had preceded us. We headed west from the Slayton Hill Bridge following the tracks of walkers, cross-country skiers, a fat-tired bike, and four-legged critters who had come out of the woods to take advantage of the ease of travel on the MRG. We also enjoyed conversation with a couple who recently relocated to Lebanon where they have easy access to the trail, as well as all the arts organizations around Colburn Park. Like us, they are looking forward to the day when the Mascoma River Greenway will connect with the Northern Rail Trail, providing safe passage through downtown Lebanon. (Round trip mileage from Slayton Hill Overpass westward to bridge over Mascoma River near Timken: 1.5 miles)
MRGSnowRainie

Meeting new folks on the trail

 

  

RainieLarry

Larry and Rainie Kelly

Rail Trail Angst

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Many of you may know Frank Gould, Co-Chair (with Paul Coats) of the MRG project, friendly MRG promoter at the Leb Farmers Market, and someone working hard to solve the problem of access at both ends of our Mascoma River Greenway .  .  . trying to make connections

Connections Count

The river twists itself,

coiled like an upset snake

beneath the railtrail bridge.

I watch it slither away,

beyond the oaks and maples

which shadow grasslands,

after slipping east through

neighborhoods and woods.

 

I walk beyond the bridge

along the rail corridor

where trains at one time

carried freight, passengers

and American life into

the valleys of our village.

Today, the trains are gone.

Its corridor is transformed,

 

derailed, cleared and paved;

a greenway to give locals

access to their community,

to their health, to their self,

to their American life.

Today they find this path

for comfort and calm,

for daily, scenic exercise.

 

They stroll their new-born;

bicycle with their kids;

walk to a grocery store

and home with filled bags.

They’ve found their walk

or ski to movies, to eat out,

or to their jobs and back.

Rush-hour traffic absent.

 

They visit friends they meet,

talk about the friendly walk,

and wonder why the trail

closes at dysfunction junction?

Why shopping malls exist

only well beyond trail’s end?

How might we reach out, they

ask, to unfold our community?

                        Frank Gould   2017

Thank You Donors

full page ad donorsFrom Sunday September 24 Valley News

 

Lebanon Seeks Input on Greenway Plans

20151116_162338By Tim Camerato

Valley News Staff Writer

Monday, March 28, 2017

Summer work should allow cyclists, runners and walkers to make use of the 4-mile path that will connect downtown and West Lebanon, said Frank Gould, who is co-chairman of the volunteer group working on the greenway. But the results of a downtown visioning survey could mean the path shares the roads downtown rather than going through a discontinued rail tunnel.

“I personally believe it is not a safe thing to do in the downtown area,” Gould said of possible road-sharing plans. “I think most of my committee agrees with that.”

Gould has been working on the greenway’s construction since leaving the state Legislature about four years ago. The idea’s been kicked around for decades, he said, but it wasn’t until the state offered use of an east-west railroad bed that work could begin.

Working alongside the city’s recreation and parks department, volunteers held workdays along the trail and raised more than $2.3 million for construction and paving.

Gould said their mission is to allow for easier movement between downtown and West Lebanon without having to worry about traffic or main roads. When Lebanon first became a city more than 50 years ago, he said, pedestrians didn’t have any easy options to go between the two neighborhoods, and that’s a challenge the city is still facing today.

“It’s going to tie our community from east to west,” Gould said.

Regardless of what the city decides for downtown, the proposed trail will begin where the Northern Rail Trail ends at Spencer Street. From there, it will follow the railroad bed, cross the Mascoma River several times and will come to an end near Seminary Hill. Paving is slated to begin next year, and the city has committed to plowing one side and will set cross-country ski tracks on the other.

But proposals for Lebanon’s downtown could hamper the greenway’s goal of being a separate space for pedestrians and cyclists. Of three alternative plans, only one allows for use of the rail tunnel.

Lebanon’s visioning study was introduced partially because, in 2014, the tunnel was dilapidated and in need of repairs. A city-owned parking lot above the tunnel was closed that fall and the city signed a contract for more than $300,000 with Massachusetts-based consulting firm Vanasse Hangen Brustlin to seek input about the future of downtown.

Working hand-in-hand, consultants and officials hosted a series of community discussions and released an online survey. More than 800 comments were gathered, which allowed the consultants to create three alternatives for downtown.

All three were shown to the public during a February meeting, according to Lebanon Planning and Zoning Director David Brooks. But even with all of the comments, the city still doesn’t feel that there’s a preferred option that most people feel comfortable with, he said.

Brooks said the city put consultants in a “holding pattern” and are asking people to participate in a second survey. He’s also making presentations and giving updates to city boards and businesses.

Gould is hoping that residents will respond to the survey and choose to keep the rail tunnel.

“The tunnel is paramount for safe transit through downtown Lebanon,” he said.

People can find the survey on the city’s website at planning.lebnh.net. Brooks is also scheduled to speak about visioning at 6:30 p.m. tonight at the Planning Board meeting in the City Hall Council Chambers.

Volunteers with the Mascoma River Greenway will also be presenting final construction plans from 5:30 to 7 p.m on April 7 in the City Hall Council Chambers.

Tim Camerato can be reached at tcamerato@vnews.com or 603-727-3223.