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Snowshoe Series at Androscoggin Riverlands begins Saturday

The Androscoggin Land Trust will host three snowshoe outings at the Androscoggin Riverlands to highlight the cultural and natural aspects of Maine’s fifth largest state park, just 20 minutes from Downtown Lewiston-Auburn. Take part in one or all of a three-part series exploring the Riverlands and learning about its natural and cultural history.

Each event will begin at the park entrance off Center Bridge Road in Turner and be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., highlighting a different aspect of the conservation land. These events are free and open to the public.

February 11: Legends of the Riverlands. Learn about what life used to be like at the Riverlands in the 1800s, when a small village, saw mill and schools existed along the river’s banks. In the 1920s, the village was destroyed to make way for the rising water behind the new Gulf Island Dam. Join the search for the homestead foundations that still remain in the park.

February 25: Riverlands Winter Greens. Learn about the trees and shrubs at the Riverlands that provide food and shelter for the birds and animals.

March 3: Winter Wildlife in the Park. Maine Inland Fisheries and Wildlife biologist Joe Willey will join us to show how animals survive in winter and how to identify tracks in the snow. The biologists have suggested that the presence of dogs would not enhance this experience.

The gently graded trail is a two-mile loop. Trail maps will be available for participants. Please bring a pair of snowshoes and water and snacks for the journey. Due to the support of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, a limited number of snowshoes will be available to borrow on February 11 and February 25. Please contact Margi Huber at the Androscoggin Land Trust to reserve them at 782-2302 or mhuber@androscogginlandtrust.org.

The Androscoggin Riverlands, owned by the State of Maine, encompasses nearly 2,600 acres in Turner and Leeds that was initially conserved by a group of local citizens concerned that the rivershore views and traditional recreation uses would be lost to residential development when the former timberland went up for sale. Upon successfully conserving this land, the Riverlands group and others formed the Androscoggin Land Trust in 1989.

“Having a park like this so close to the Lewiston-Auburn community gives so many children a great opportunity to get outdoors and experience a little bit of wilderness,” said ALT Outreach Coordinator, Margi Huber. “In addition to these being events open to the general public, each trip will be a special field trip for children from Lewiston-Auburn.”

With grant support from the Environmental Funders Network, Bangor Savings Bank Foundation and the Ferguson Foundation, ALT will be helping the Boys and Girls Club of Lewiston-Auburn and the Tree Street Youth Program of Lewiston venture to the Riverlands this winter.

The Androscoggin Land Trust protects important natural areas, traditional landscapes and outdoor experiences within the Androscoggin River watershed by promoting stewardship and supporting a network of public and privately held conservation land. ALT conserves nearly 4,850 acres of land, including over 10 miles of riverfront along the Androscoggin River.

 

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