News Wednesday November 16, 2022

Colorado Counties & Towns Support Their Open Space


  • Douglas Co. renewed its .17% sales tax for 15 years by 88% of the vote. It will raise $217 million!
  • Routt County will continue property tax funding to conserve water, wildlife and working ranches with 85% voting yes!
  • Windsor passed a first time sales tax increase of .25% with 59% of the vote to preserve open space for the next 20 years!

Kudos to those voters and to the Trust for Public Land (TPL) staff who contributed to their success! TPL will be supporting COS efforts to get our TOPS program extended.

It expires in 2025.


The Threat of Development- Bluestem Open Space


Like most of the TOPS stories, this one begins with the encroachment of development. Members of the Parks Advisory Board recognized the importance of short grass prairie to wildlife such as the pronghorn, burrowing owl and black tailed prairie dog and the degree to which this easily developable land was being gobbled up at a rapid pace. As a result, the Parks Advisory Board decided to use the relatively new TOPS Program funding to acquire and protect the 646 acres surrounding Big Johnson Reservoir.

Check out our story map to learn more about Bluestem Open Space.

ConnectCOS Transportation Plan  


The draft ConnectCOS Transportation Plan was released this week and the City of Colorado Springs is asking residents to review it and provide their feedback by Tuesday, December 6th. This plan, the first city-wide transportation planning effort in nearly 20 years covers all modes of travel. It takes into account non-motorized travel along our robust urban trail system and the role that it plays in providing high-quality, safe, and beautiful connections all throughout the city. TOSC has been a stakeholder throughout the two-year process and we’re encouraged to see how many of the 175 proposed projects will include connections to the off-street urban trail network.

To review the plan and provide comments digitally, please visit the project webpage.

Leave no Trace –

It’s not just for Grown-ups!


Ute Pass Elementary School is the only public school in the country to earn LNT Accredited Youth Program Status! 6th Graders become immersed in outdoor education and environmental learning and their passion led to this distinction. Meeting the required 11 different standards, students learned how to minimize their impact and become stewards of our precious public lands. Here’s what the kids say: Mirka – “It’s good to learn about Leave no Trace because we get to learn how to help the environment while we are going on trips and outside.” Lachlan – “ It shows how the program lives up to its name. Trying to go backpacking and other class trips while learning Leave no Trace has been interesting and totally different than when I go with my family.” Congrats to Ute Pass Elementary School and their Mountain Academy of Arts and Sciences.


Why Give?

We know you like our weekly Trail Talk, and count on trail updates, public planning opportunities and look to TOSC to be your eyes, ears and voice when Trails, Parks and Open Space are at risk. Now we need YOU!

Please consider making a Give contribution at an amount comfortable for you. Give Here!

Join us at one of our Give events tonight and/or next. And thank you!

FRIENDSgive!ING is a collaboration between 4 local non-profits and involves beer-tasting and live music! Join TONIGHT at Black Forest Community Club at 12530 Black Forest Rd. Admission is free. Guests who donate to all 4 groups can win great door prizes. Learn how these groups (including TOSC) are improving our quality of life!

Enjoy great beer at Seven’s Gate Taproom this Tuesday November 22nd . It’s Charity Pint Night from 4-7 and TOSC is the winner! $1 from every pint sold supports our work. Come join us! Located across the street from Cerberus Brewing Company and serving Cerberus Beer and other excellent pilsners and ales!

Community Art Project at Thorndale Park


Last Sunday, a group of TOSC supporters headed out on a fun, themed Westside bike ride that was billed as a hidden in plain sight tour. The first stop was at Thorndale Park, where local resident and Organization of Westside Neighbors (OWN) board member Nicole Riggio was working on a very cool community-driven art project adorning the fence around the newly renovated court facilities. This project was funded by a grant from both OWN and the Cultural Office of the Pikes Peak Region (COPPeR) and we applaud all involved for bringing color and life to the park and neighborhood. We encourage local residents to be stewards of their local parks in many ways, be it via an established friends group, picking up poop if you find it while out on a hike, or by developing a small approved project that adds value to the space. Well done Nicole and neighbors!

Glad You Asked!


Recently, a follower of TOSC asked for details on what was going on with trees being cut down and large equipment being used along the Rockrimmon Trail (also known as the Delmonico Trail) in northwest Colorado Springs. The answer is that fire mitigation is going on in that area. The most recent fire mitigation project took place along the section of trail next to Golden Hills Park. The CSFD Wildfire Mitigation Crews thinned the gamble oak in the area, trimmed low hanging branches on ponderosa and created more defensible space to mitigate the dangers of an urban wildfire in that area. Wildfire mitigation work has been ongoing all along the Rockrimmon Trail and in the larger Rockrimmon neighborhood over the past few months.

Learn More About the CSFD Wildfire Mitigation Program


2022 Canya Cañon Trail Race and Family Hike

Virtual: Sat. Nov 12 – Fri. Nov 25


The Friends of Cheyenne Cañon are hosting the virtual Canya Cañon Trail Race and Family Hike. This 11.5 mile route features a challenging grand tour of North Cheyenne Cañon Park’s trails that participants can complete on their own time. This is one of FoCC’s big annual fundraisers. Back in October, FoCC’s Halloween Costume Carnival fundraiser was canceled due to wildfire activity near the park. Participation in this event will help fund future projects in the park!

More Information Cheyenne Canon Race


Liquid Lecture

Mash Mechanics Brew Co.

Wed. Nov 16th, 6:00-700 pm


Join us for $1 off pints at Mash Mechanix! Mile High Youth Corps Regional Manager (Land Conservation) CJ Runge will discuss Youth, Community, and the Environment. Please RSVP to: For more details.

Friends of Fox Run Fundraiser

Green District Night

Wed. Nov 16th, 3:00-7:00pm


Support the Friends of Fox Run by dining with the Green District on November 16th from 3pm to 7pm. 30% of each total will be donated to the Friends Group to support their mission of education and trail work in Fox Run Regional Park. Orders can be made in person at the Spectrum Loop location in Colorado Springs or ordered online using promo code FoxRunPark.

Acacia Tree Lighting Ceremony

Fri Nov 18, 6:00 – 8:00 PM


Be a part of the holiday tree lighting festivities in the middle of Acacia Park! Santa will be present to meet with families and take photos. Support local food trucks and consider ice skating at the 2022 Skate in the Park rink. Kick off your holiday season with this family favorite. Free Community Event. Find more details here.

Blackpackers- Hiker Trash Prom

Sat. Dec 3rd, 5:30pm – 10pm

This year marks a significant milestone in Blackpackers history. It is our first annual fundraiser and we are hosting it at the beautiful Clay Venues in Downtown Colorado Springs. At this year’s “Hiker Trash” prom you can expect live local music, dancing, food and beverage, drinks from local breweries and wineries, speakers, and a silent auction. Together, we’ll raise a glass in celebration of our progress toward making outdoor recreation more accessible to all members of our community. We are also thrilled to share with you more details about upcoming Blackpackers’ programming in 2023. Purchase tickets here.

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