The Wisconsin-Illinois Fox River Water Trail Initiative is seeking to improve how people engage with and enjoy the Fox River along its entire length. The group is issuing an invitation to participate in data collection to better identify needs and opportunities associated with this effort. Here is the message from Karen Ann Miller, AICP, Executive Planner, Kane County Development Department and Co-Chair, of the Trail Initiative.
Hello Fox River Stakeholders!
You may have heard of a little project going on in and around your community. It’s a project that will enhance recreational opportunities, garner national recognition and be an economic development driver for municipalities and counties along the Fox River. The Wisconsin-Illinois Fox River Water Trail Initiative began when individuals attending the Fox River Summit in 2014 learned about the National Park Service (NPS) Water Trail System. In the summer of 2015 these individuals met to discuss their interest in working together to develop a water trail for the Fox River that may someday be designated as part of the NPS Water Trail System. The benefits of such a designation include national recognition, a listing on the National Park Service website with interactive maps and other information for paddlers, support for conservation and other efforts to protect the trail.
The group, the Core Development Team, applied for and is receiving technical assistance from the NPS’ Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program to develop the Wisconsin-Illinois Fox River Water Trail Initiative.
The Core Development Team has been busy collecting existing data regarding canoe/kayak access points including signage, parking, and amenities on land at the access location. Data collection on river segments regarding the journey experience such as time expected to travel a segment, hazards, dams and portages, and experience level is also needed. This data will be used to develop maps of the Fox River, a public website and plan for suggested future improvements.
We need your help to collect data in Illinois during this paddling season! Collection forms that can be accessed electronically through Google Drive or as paper forms have been developed, along with instructions for data collection volunteers.
If you are interested in becoming involved in this exciting initiative to develop a water trail for the Fox River please see the instructions attached to this email and contact Karen Ann Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Please sign-up to receive updates on the Wisconsin-Illinois Fox River Water Trail Initiative through the Fox River Ecosystem Partnership monthly Downstream newsletter at www.foxriverecosystem.org.
We hope you will join us on this exciting venture!
Karen Ann Miller, AICP
Kane County Development Dept.
Wisconsin-Illinois Fox River Water Trail Initiative
719 S. Batavia Ave.
Geneva, IL 60134