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Eastern Trail Alliance eyes expansion

Group’s goal is to extend trail south from Kennebunk to Kittery

The Kennebunk Post - By Alex Acquisto,Staff Writer

The Eastern Trail Alliance and Southern Eastern Trail Alliance have begun to set new plans for expanding into motion.

Optimally, the off-road trail will continue from South Portland through Wells, North and South Berwick and Eliot, all the way down to Kittery. The alliance held an informational meeting Tuesday, March 26 in North Berwick to discuss expansion plans and feel out any opposition.

Formally designed in 1998 to follow the abandoned Eastern Railway, the Eastern Trail was constructed for runners, hikers, bikers and other general outdoor enthusiasts.

Nearly every year since the millennium, new paths have been forged between South Portland and Kennebunk.

“There was some reluctance in southern Maine about the trail — there was skepticism whether the trail would ever get built over the Kennebunk turnpike,” said Deborah Erickson Irons, director of Choose to Be Healthy Coalition and Eastern Trail Alliance trustee.

“People wondered, ‘Will we ever get the benefits of the trail down here?’ To the town’s credit, they have been patient and now they see that the trail is ready in Kennebunk. We’re over the hurdle of putting it over the turnpike,” she said.

“We’re seeking funding to extend the offroad trail from where it is in Kennebunk now, farther south,” said Erickson-Irons. “We wanted to start generating interest in the south, so we formed a small committee to focus on North Berwick and South Berwick.”

Read the full article online here.

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