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Committee Reports

February 2024
See what our committees have been up to over the last month.

A.T. Management

Most recent meeting: 2024-Mar-04 Next meeting: 2024-May-06 Recent projects and activities: wildlife transects and corridor monitoring are ongoing; trail projects will start up asap - season schedule has been set and is posted The committee voted to invest in funds to repair gravel in high-impact sections of the Upper Goose Pond Caretakers Rd Future projects and plans: 3 Greenagers projects are planned; Wilderness First Aid will be held this spring; Hop Brook project is moving ahead Volunteer recruitment needs: natural heritage monitors, corridor monitors, shelter coordinator, and 2025 committee vice chair

Bicycling

Committee Chair attended the February ExCom Meeting Completed draft calendar for 2024 biking season Listed April and May bike rides on ActDB Updated committee webpage for 2024 season Investigating participation in MassBike May monthly riding activities Distributing information to local bike shops about Intro classes to pass onto their bike customers

Communications

We placed an ad in Berkshire Magazine's Outdoor Rec Guide 413 and sponsored a two-page ad for the Berkshire Outdoor website Our website earned its best Google ranking so far at 7 The eblast generated four inquiries for volunteer positions on the Executive Committee and we are looking to vote in three new ExCom members as a result Facebook: 17 posts (top post: the NET flip book) Instagram: 15 posts (top post: 20s/30s cross country ski outing) Newsletters: 1393 messages sent Website: 1) published NET flip book 2) published wildlife quiz to promote World Wildlife Day 3) published Pathfinders page to promote Women's History Month 4) published two "chapter favorites" interactive maps 5) completed transition of all committees to hosted mailboxes

DEI

DEI Outdoors met with the AMC DEI Board and the DEI Interchapter Committee to share the information gathered from their fact-finding survey and interviews The DEI Speaker Series has scheduled 2 new Zoom events The 3rd annual Women's affinity weekend "Connecting Women, Connecting with Nature" has been scheduled for 2024-Jul-26 at Noble View The grand opening of the All Persons Trail at Noble View will held during FallFest on 05-Oct-2024. Our partner, Hilltown Community Family Center, has donated permanent StoryWalk® display boards for the trail. Planning continues for a wide variety of programs to be offered at this event DEI Outdoors have scheduled two learning opportunities: Practitioner Certificate Course, designed to equip you with the skills and knowledge to drive positive change in your organization or community, and AORE Inclusive Summit - Sharpen Your Skills & Make a Difference

Family Outings

Recent and upcoming StoryWalk® books at Noble View (a collaboration with the Hilltown Family Center) are "Let's Go! Animal Tracks in the Snow" (February), "Thanks to the Animals" by Allen J. Sockabasin (March), and "It's Spring" by Linda Glasser 16 people joined us on 03-Feb-2024 at Noble View for animal tracking with Jim Pelletier Hilltown Family Center has provided permanent StoryWalk® boards for installation by the professional trail crew on the new All Persons trail at Noble View in time for the October 5th opening 33 parents and children attended the Family Outings Skate and Pizza Party at Amelia Park in Westfield. Amelia Park gave us a free room for the party. We also set up a membership table for people to get information about our chapter A membership table for people to learn about Western MA was set up for Gateway Regional Open house with Community organizations in attendance on March 7th The Sweet Maple Syrup Hike at the Conwell Property in Worthington (to be followed by a pancake buffet at High Hopes Farm) is posted on ActDB

Hiking

Active hiking leaders: 35 Trips led in February 2024: Chicopee SP (2024-Feb-06); Mt Ascutney (2024-Feb-09); Mt Cube (2024-Feb-24); NCC to Rt 41 (2024-Feb-24); and Tannery Falls (2024-Feb-24)

NET Management

Next NET Committee meeting is 18-Mar-2024 NET Coordinator attended the annual Hike the Hill in Washington, DC with members of Congress to advocate for trail funding, conservation and equitable access Hiked with Rob Schechtman, Pioneer Valley Hiking Club (PVHC is the adopter of Sections 1 & 2) to assess the potential for tent platforms on property recently conserved by NPS Scheduled a site visit to Wendell SF Shelter with DCR. Shelter is in need of repairs and NET volunteers plan to perform the work with possible funding from DCR for materials Notified NET adopters of WFA training at Noble View in late April and Leadership Training on 24-Mar-2024 in Greenfield, MA Westfield Girl Scout Troop has been proposed to adopt Section 3 Spring Gathering confirmed for 13-Apr-2024 at Hitchcock Center for the Environment. Andrew Long (NPS liaison for the NET) will discuss trail funding and a recent change in NET designation stature NET adopters will partner with volunteer runners from the Seven Sisters Trail Race on Section 7 to clear the trail before the 04-May-2024 race

Paddling

Previous meeting: 2024-02-06; next meeting: 2024-04-17 Planning is currently underway for this season's paddling events, demos, leader training, workshops, and invasive pulls We are in need of more paddle leaders and committee members Six upcoming events are posted in ActDB

Training and Education

Chapter Leadership Skills Training is scheduled for 24-Mar-2024 in Greenfield, MA Online adult MHFA Training has been scheduled for several evenings in May; youth and in-person training undergoing schedueling now Volunteer Facilitator Training - for folks who are interested in improving facilitation skills - have been scheduled in NY and Boston Upcoming AMC SOLO WFA/WFR courses are on ActDB
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