A few days ago this community celebrated an “extension” and an “enhancement” on the same afternoon. On Dec. 12, a ribbon was cut on the Mohawk Extension project, a one-fifth mile addition to the former terminus at Mohawk Drive. Now the Greenway goes under the Mohawk Drive bridge and includes a direct connection for over 50 residents.
Thirty minutes later a group gathered at the new restroom off of Raider Drive to cut the ribbon there.
As part of the restroom dedication, a new “educational” component was also added to the Greenway. Education is the “enhancement” I’d like to talk about this week.
Education is a component of the Greenway experience that is not new, but is growing. A few years ago the Greenway board expressed a desire to place historical markers along the Greenway and board member Matthew Brown jumped on the chance to donate the first two. These attractive stone and marble pillars tell the story of our namesakes, Col. Benjamin Cleveland and Col. Edward Bradley.
Still in progress along the Greenway is the placement of identifiers of the more than 36 varieties of trees. Three-foot high wooden posts are visible, primarily between Cleveland High School and 25th Street. When the project is completed, these posts will display common and scientific names of the trees, as well as other interesting facts. I wish these identifiers were in place when I had to assemble a leaf collection my freshman year in high school!
Also in progress is the project I referenced at the restroom. The local United Way has sponsored the installation of a “Born Learning Trail,” a series of stages along a newly poured path circling the playground. Parents are encouraged to bring their young children to experience a number of activities, including physical, counting and observation exercises. Weather permitting, the Born Learning Trail will be completed before the end of the year.
A final “educational enhancement” is scheduled be in place by the time this column appears. Goal Academy, a nontraditional hybrid high school within the county school system, recently received a grant to install a “Before I Die” wall in Raider Drive Park. The concept has been sweeping the nation and the globe as large blackboards with the line, “Before I Die I want to…” listed several times on a large black board. Installed in public venues, individuals are invited to express their thoughts with chalk in a socially acceptable fashion. Students and faculty at Goal Academy will monitor the board.
The Greenway is now four miles long with plenty of places for more educational opportunities. Thanks to the groups and individuals who have donated to make these projects happen. If you or your organization has an idea for an educational addition to the Greenway, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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