News Wednesday June 9, 2021

16 Promised Parks
In the city of Colorado Springs, developers are required to provide land so that the city can build neighborhood and community parks. The problem? The city doesn’t have the funding to actually build and maintain the parks. Some neighborhoods have waited decades for their park. Land for Gray Hawk Park near North Gate was set aside 10+ years ago. Families are still hoping for playgrounds and sports courts.
 
Increasing TOPS from .1% to .25% and increasing the percentage of TOPS committed to building and maintaining parks would mean there would be three times the dollars for parks.
 
There’s a list of 16 promised parks scattered around our community. It’s time to keep promises made to families and build those parks!
TOSC Virtual Trail Mixer: Urban Trail Safety
Tue. June 15, 5:30 – 7:00 pm
 
The summer recreation season is heating up and TOSC wants to keep you safe! Join us for the next TOSC Trail Mixer: Urban Trail Safety with Cops and Rangers on June 15th, 5:30 to 6:30pm! This virtual program on Zoom will feature Officer Wesley Wilkerson from the CSPD who will share tips on how to protect bikes and property at trailheads and will also feature Bowen Gillings from the Garden of the Gods staff that will give you information on how to plan to stay safe once you are on the trails. Senior Ranger Jason Hagan from Cheyenne Mountain State Park will walk you through how to make an emergency plan for when you are outdoors and how to handle an emergency when it happens. This is a free event and open to the public!
 

PARK AND TRAIL News

Cheyenne Canon Parking Lot Facebook Response
Thank you for the amazing response and dialogue on the TOSC Facebook post that relayed information about the opening of the freshly paved Gold Camp-High Drive Parking Lot in North Cheyenne Canon Park. This post reached nearly 100,000 people and received over 250 comments. A lot of the posts expressed excitement for having 94 striped parking spots while others looked forward to the more orderly parking experience the new lot should bring. Many posts featured concerns for the project. Some commenters mourned the loss of the rustic charm the old lot brought while others questioned if this was a wise use of funds. Others expressed concern for the storm runoff that will be created by the asphalt lot and where that water will end up. TOSC will work to find answers to the most frequently asked questions and find out why the project was needed.
Pedal Our Past Trail Profile – Southeast Colorado Springs
 
As we roll into the Summer of 2021 so many things that have happened before seem to have a different spin on them, Bike Month included. For this year, the planning team created a unique set of routes that take in our many miles of urban trail network, creating loops in 5 distinct regions of Colorado Springs and it is being called Pedal Our Past.
 
At the beginning of the month, the organizers went out along the urban trail and on-street network to install the historic point of interest signage that will enable riders to discover fascinating details about the history of Colorado Springs, both old and new. In Southeast Colorado Springs, staff from TOSC and volunteers from the RISE (Resilient, Inspired, Strong, and Engaged) Coalition enjoyed a ride along the 6.2 mile route stopping at 13 different points along the way to install the signage. One of the highlights is the Panorama Park renovation project, the largest neighborhood park revitalization in the 150 year long history of Colorado Springs, certainly history-in-the-making while we look back during the sesquicentennial! 
 
You can see the Southeast Colorado Springs route profile with additional information by visiting here:
 
 
Each week the City will be profiling one of the loops and we will continue to share details about the routes and the many points of interest that fall along our urban trails. This is a wonderful opportunity to get together with a few friends or family members and discover many of the #hiddeninplainsight treasures that our urban trail system allows safe, enjoyable connections to throughout Colorado Springs. 
 
For additional information about Pedal Our Past and how you can plan for your own Bike Month historic loop ride, you can visit the City web page: https://coloradosprings.gov/pedalourpast 
 
To hear Mayor Johhn Suthers talk about General Palmers vision and how the Pedal Our Past can help you connect to that in a very personal and healthy way, enjoy this clip produced by the event media partner, KOAA
 
Volunteer Opportunities
 
Your help is needed on our trails! In the next month, there are over 30 opportunities to volunteer in your Pikes Peak Region public lands and in the community (you can find these workdays and more on the TOSC Open Space Volunteer Calendar). The Friends of Stratton Open Space need volunteers for their evening work session on June 10th. On Saturday, June 8th, you can help the Friends of Cheyenne Canon repair tables, help Medicine Wheel do trail work and rehab in Palmer Park or assist the Friends of the Equestrian Skills Course in Bear Creek Regional Park. The Trails and Open Space Coalition needs more Volunteer Trail Ambassadors for our Colorado Springs Open Spaces. There will be in-person trainings on June 17th and June 24th.
 

TOSC

TOSC Member Bike Ride – LEGACY LOOP
Saturday June 19 at 9:00am
 
We are thrilled to start hosting Membership Hikes and Bike Rides again. If you are a TOSC Member, we’d like to invite you to join us for a 3-hour gentle Legacy Loop Bike Ride, where we will experience the beauty and history of Colorado Springs. We will explore the Pikes Peak Greenway and Shooks Run Trail and visit various points of interest along the way, including urban art and some of the newest trail connections. Space is limited, so please only register if you are confident that you will attend. If you are not a member and want to learn how, contact Beth at beth@trailsandopenspaces.org
Thanking our Donors with a Unique Hike
 
This past Saturday, Hiking Bob hosted an exclusive Cheyenne Mountain “Top-Down” hike as a way to thank some of TOSC’s Benefactor, Conservationist and Summit Society level members. Thanks to the generosity of Nick and Rocky Mountain Ride, the group caught a ride to the top of Cheyenne Mountain and was treated to a guided 9 (ish) mile hike down the mountain via the Mountain Loop, Dragon’s Backbone and Dixon Trails. Special Thanks to Hiking Bob and Rocky Mountain Ride for making this hike possible.
Did you know that TOSC offers a DOG MEMBERSHIP?
 
That’s right!  When you sign up to become a member, your favorite trail companion can become a Dog Member for an additional $10. And your pooch will receive a TOSC bandana to show their commitment to our trails, parks and open spaces. Meet Izzy, one of our current dog members.
 
Name: My name is Isabella but everyone calls me Izzy.
 
Tell us something about yourself: I am NOT a “stay at home” dog. Every chance I get I’m chasing sticks in parks and open spaces or exploring our trail system. Though I hate baths I love water and swim whenever possible. Love to chase bunnies, squirrels and birds but have yet to catch one.
 
What do our parks mean to you? Our parks and trails are my “raison d’etre” ( no French Poodles in my lineage). A day without a romp in a park is bleak indeed.
 
Why should your canine friends consider supporting TOSC? Other dogs should consider TOSC memberships because TOSC is working to make our parks and trails better for everyone, including dogs, with their advocacy and stewardship. They’re committed to leashing up our Community Leaders and getting a ballot measure on the November ballot that would increase TOPS funding. That could mean more dog parks!
 
How long have you lived in the Pikes Peak Region? I’ve lived in this area 12 years after moving here as a puppy from Littleton CO.
 
What is your favorite trail/park? My favorite trail/park is whatever I’m on any given day!!!
Do You Know Where All the Dog Parks Are?
 
Because so many TOSC members also have furry friends, TOSC compiled a printed and online dog park brochure. Dogs love to visit new places with new smells and new doggy acquaintances.
 
The brochure provides detailed directions, photos of each park and the facilities at each park. The list of dog parks is extensive and includes parks in nearby Douglas and Teller Counties.

Community

Pikes Outdoor Recreation Alliance Launches
Respect in the Outdoors Campaign
 
The Pikes Peak region, along with the rest of the Front Range, has experienced significant growth in outdoor recreation use, with a number of new users over the past few years which has only been magnified as a result of the pandemic. The great news is that so many are experiencing the tremendous benefits to their health and well-being by spending time outdoors and our communities are enjoying the economic benefits of a strong outdoor economy. The bad news is that this increased volume and some poor outdoor ethics is diminishing the experiences of all users and having negative impacts to our natural and recreational resources.
 
PPORA is bringing land managers, industry, and community partners together to focus on education and awareness to help minimize negative impacts through a collaborative campaign.
 
Join the Campaign! The Resource Toolkit below is available for anyone who wants to help share the messaging and encourage our residents and visitors to show greater respect for the resource and one another. It includes videos, social posts, images, and more!
 
The central focus is RESPECT, expressed through Leave No Trace principles and we are bringing focus to each one as a weekly theme. See the calendar below for weeks and themes and click on the weekly images to access resources specific to that theme.
Let’s make a difference this season because we are STRONGER TOGETHER!
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Do you want to preserve and improve our outdoor spaces?

Become a member!

For as little as $30 Join the Coalition and advocate for the preservation, improvement and maintenance of our TRAILS, OPEN SPACES and PARKS.