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Guilford Foundation Awards $10,000 for Chittenden Park Improvements

The Guilford Foundation's mission is to help the community wherever help is needed. Most recently, the foundation announced a $10,000 grant that will improve access to a landmark Guilford park. The money will be distributed over three years to help the Connecticut Forest & Park Association (CFPA) construct a trail boardwalk and overlook platform at Chittenden Park.

Guilford Foundation Executive Director Liza Petra said one of the amazing aspects of the park is the fact that the New England Trail runs to and ends at Chittenden Park.

"The thing that's so cool is that it's a national trail and there's only 11 [national trails] in the whole country and it's right here in little old Guilford," said Petra, adding, "The town has been really interested in improving the access over at Chittenden Park and making sure that the shore and marshes are protected and allow some access, and [also] the timing of it is just so beautiful because it coincides with the town's 375th anniversary, so, for us, we're just thrilled to be able to help support it."

Petra said the purpose of the grant is to help the CFPA preserve, protect, and enhance the park by constructing more accessibility to the shore. She also said one of the advantages of this project is that the construction will enhance view points to areas including Faulkner's Island and Chaffinch Island Park.

The construction of the boardwalk and overlook will complete 16 miles of hiking in Guilford, which will facilitate visits from walkers, beachcombers, bird watchers, fishermen, hikers, and park visitors, simultaneously protecting the natural environment while creating an opportunity for visitors to experience the shoreline's natural beauty.

This project is a partnership between the CFPA, the Guilford Parks & Recreation Department, which manages the park, and the National Park Service.

Construction is slated to begin this summer, with a dedication event planned during the Guilford 375th Anniversary Celebration on June 2, 2014.

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