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Atwood Park Silent Sports Trail System Groundbreaking Ceremony

NEW MILFORD, IL –A new adventure close to home will begin on Friday, May 3, 2019 at 1:00 p.m. with a groundbreaking ceremony for the Atwood Park Silent Sports Trail System.

Those attending should enter the park at 7074 Rydberg Road, where staff will direct to parking. This redevelopment project will enhance “silent sports,” which include hiking, mountain biking, trail running, snowshoeing, and cross country skiing.

Phase 1 of the trail system includes approximately five miles of multi-use natural surface trails for beginner and intermediate users, a parking area, trail signage, and a bike wash/repair station. Once completed, the entire project will include approximately 20 miles of interconnecting trails on both the north and south sides of the Kishwaukee river. Multi-use trails will introduce new hikers, bikers, and cross country skiers to the natural beauty of Seth B. Atwood Park, and provide the opportunity to incorporate silent sports into camp and residential education programming at Atwood Park.

During its community-led Master Plan process, the Rockford Park District heard that investing in trails, open space, and recreation paths is very important to citizens. This groundbreaking is the start of a citizen-driven project reflecting that request. Phase 1 of this project is funded by a grant from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), the Atwood Foundation, and more than 40 individual donors. By utilizing private donations and grant money for Phase 1, the District is minimizing reliance on tax dollars.

The Rockford Park District Board of Commissioners approved a construction contract with N-TRAK Group, LLC, which includes Terra Firma Trails, LLC, a trail builder subcontractor. Atwood Silent Sports Trail Phase 1 is expected to be completed in summer, 2019.

Seth B. Atwood Park is located just south of Rockford in New Milford, Illinois, at 7074 Rydberg Road. The park was once the site of the Camp Grant artillery range, and many remnant structures remain. Atwood Park is also the location of Atwood Center, home of the Rockford Park District’s Outdoor Recreation and Education Department and the award-winning Birds of Prey facility.

Mike Costello