Here comes Walktober in The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor

Here comes Walktober in The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor

Here comes Walktober!

“I return with tautness gone, with delight in simple things heightened, with a sense of health and sanity and well-being. I feel more calm, more capable. I have been in contact with the enduring and the real. Cares have shrunk to proper proportions. For many of us a return to the out-of-doors is more than a pleasure; it is a basic need essential to physical, psychological, and emotional welfare.” From “A Walk Through the Year” by Edwin Way Teale

Walktober, the annual celebration of our extraordinary region known as The Last Green Valley (TGLV) National Heritage Corridor, kicks off next week. On Saturday, we start with a sunrise hike and conclude Nov. 6 with a sunset hike. In between are seven weeks of more than 210 unique experiences where you can find ways to explore the natural, historic and cultural wonders of one of the oldest National Heritage Corridors in the nation.

The Walktober brochure is out and available throughout the 35 towns of the heritage corridor at town halls, libraries and at many of our partners including those outside the corridor. You can also call TLGV at 860-774-3300 to get a list of locations in your town or to request a copy in the mail. You can also visit our website TheLastGreenValley.org and find our online guide under the What’s Going On menu. If you already have your guide, check the online calendar, too. More adventures arrived after the guide went to print and several have been updated with new times and additional information.

This is the 32nd year that this special opportunity has been offered in our region, but it would not be possible without the more than 120 partner organizations, TLGV members, rangers and volunteers who have created these adventures. I have been looking through the list of walk, hikes and experiences, and I can tell you I can’t remember a year with such wide variety. In my (somewhat biased opinion), Walktober 2022 promises to be the best one ever.

Historical organizations and museums represent most of the experiences offered with more than 85 in total. TLGV partner organizations and members are offering more than 60 programs and experiences, with TLGV town celebrations and program opportunities totaling more than 35. Our region’s land trusts, state forests and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers always participate in Walktober with 20 opportunities to visit and explore their properties. This year, TLGV rangers and staff have developed 20 unique walks and programs as well. In addition, there are 14 multi-day experiences, 11 farmers’ markets, and five virtual programs offered. Walktober 2022 clearly offers something for everyone.

The quote at the top of this column by Edwin Way Teale, our region’s most celebrated naturalist writer, couldn’t have described an experience and walk in the out-of-doors any better. I too experience a calming effect following a nice walk or vigorous hike and find my outdoor life essential to my very existence. Walktober is the perfect time to experience this for those who love the outdoors.

Walktober is of course more than experiencing nature. It is a true and timeless celebration of what makes our region special and why it was designated a National Heritage Corridor in 1994. If you do a little math, you will realize Walktober is actually older than the National Corridor. Created in 1991, Walking Weekend was designed to convince the leadership of the National Park Service and others in congress this region was worthy of designation as a National Heritage Corridor. It included 22 walks, and clearly, it worked. Not long after, the event became Walking Weekend(s) and then the Walktober we all know today.

We’ve managed to organize Walktober each year since 1991 and are thrilled that so many of our partners share in the passion for the heritage corridor that they are willing to help create this incredible series of events for residents and visitors from all over the country and the world. I hope you’ll partake in Walktober this year and enjoy a walk, hike, paddle, program and experience with us. I am confident you’ll find exciting opportunities to explore our beautiful region.

Join us, and together let us care for, enjoy, and pass on this place we call home — The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor.

Bill Reid is the chief ranger of The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor. He can be reached at bill@tlgv.org of 860-774-3300.

Exploring The Last Green Valley, Sunday, September 11, 2022

The Norwich Bulletin is granted first serial rights and associated electronic rights to publish the following article.  The Last Green Valley, Inc. retains all other rights to the work.

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