Promoting Trails &
Greenways in Indiana

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Thank you to everyone who attended our 2021 Virtual Luncheon!

Annual Greenways Foundation Virtual Luncheon

Together, we highlighted accomplishments in trail development, such as our grants to trail organizations and other projects we have planned in support of trails, greenways and blueways. In addition, we recognized some outstanding leaders of the trails movement in Indiana.


Outstanding Trail Advocate

Bob Carrico has been a member of the Friends of the Pumpkinvine board from 1995 to the present — more than 26 years. During that time, he has been a key member of the Pumpkinvine Bike Ride committee, planning routes, painting turn signals, setting up tents at SAGs, and storing ride equipment like coolers in his basement. The bike ride has raised more than $150,000 during his time on that committee, funds that have been critical for purchasing land, and as matching funds for federal grants. He has served the Friends as webmaster, vice president, secretary, and trail operations manager.

wildflower garden along multi-use trail

One of Bob Carrico’s many wildflower gardens greets people on the Pumpkinvine Trail.

Bob fills cracks in the trail’s 15-mile asphalt surface to prevent them from getting larger, helps clear downed trees, and plants wildflowers. He also has been a member of the Pumpkinvine Advisory Committee, the interagency group made up of the head of the trails four managing agencies that meets every other month to formulate common trail policies and discuss any trail issues.

For his great efforts and civic-mindedness, the Greenways Foundation is proud to award Bob Carrico as our Outstanding Trail Advocate for 2021.


Outstanding Trail Project

In the early 2000s, five municipalities in Northwest Indiana and Northeast Illinois along an abandoned rail corridor came together to plan for a 15-mile rail-trail called the Pennsy Greenway. Over the years, the trail became the first bi-state facility in the area, with connections planned north to downtown Chicago via its Lakefront Trail.


Schererville residents enjoy the cross-community connection.

The Town of Schererville accounts for the largest share of the trail with over 7.5 miles and opened the first phase in 2011, with funding secured soon after for the second and third phases, both of which opened in 2020. The Pennsy is included in the American Discovery Trail, the Great American Rail-Trail, and Indiana DNR’s Visionary Trail Network. It connects to a number of adjacent neighborhoods and uses a historic railroad tunnel.

In recognition of the efforts of the Town of Schererville to establish vital off-road connections for its citizens, the Greenways Foundation is proud to award the Pennsy Greenway as our Outstanding Trail Project for 2021.


Outstanding Trail Group

Three Rivers Velo Sport (3RVS) has served Allen County, Indiana for more than 50 years, providing touring, mountain bike, racing, and slow-roll rides for 300 members annually. In 2019, 3RVS signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the City of Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department, to take over the maintenance, improvements, and programming for 10 miles of natural surface mountain bike and hiking trails in Franke Park.

large group of bicycle riders

Riders ready for a 3RVS event.

The group’s volunteers participate in monthly work days to maintain safe riding, hiking, and running conditions on the trail. This includes trimming vegetation, removing low-hanging branches, raking and clearing debris, and repairing and maintaining drainage.

3RVS serves as an organizer for Cyclo-Cross, and Monday Mountain Bike Activities, and other special events, and works with Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation to place signage and closures, to ensure public safety. They are also an annual sponsor of the Trek the Trails Rides organized by the City of Fort Wayne and Fort Wayne Trails.

In recognition of their community commitment, the Greenways Foundation is proud to honor Three Rivers Velo Sport as our Outstanding Trail Group for 2021.


Outstanding Public Official

State Representative Carey Hamilton was first elected to the Indiana House of Representatives in 2016 to represent Indiana House District 87. She has served as a nonprofit executive and worked in the environmental field for more than 20 years, managing various policy development initiatives and public outreach programs.

woman with a bicycle and wearing a helmet

Representative Hamilton is both a trail supporter and a trail user.

Rep. Hamilton served as a program manager for the Indiana Department of Environmental Management and as their first leader of Indiana’s Greening the Government Program. She then served as Executive Director of the Indiana Recycling Coalition for nine years.

Since being elected to the legislature, Rep. Hamilton has taken an active role in advancing trail access to all Hoosiers. In 2017, she helped establish the Indiana Bicycle Trails Task Force, and served along with Rep. Wes Culver on the 18-member group. The result of the Task Force was a report issued in 2019 with strategies to expand the state’s trail network and identified innovative financing to achieve these goals.

This has led to Rep. Hamilton’s crowning achievement in 2020 with the creation of Indiana’s first Legislative Trails Caucus. The Greenways Foundation began work to create this Caucus in late 2019 with a call-out to interested legislators. Immediately Rep. Hamilton responded and was able to secure bicameral and bipartisan support from other legislators.

For her accomplishments on behalf of the State of Indiana, the Greenways Foundation proudly awards Representative Carey Hamilton as our Outstanding Public Official for 2021.


Outstanding Corporation

The Welborn Baptist Foundation is a frontrunner in trails and wellness advocacy within the Evansville region. WBF has increased trails opportunities for physical activity and active living, and is a regional leader supporting trails building, trails advocacy, and trails initiatives in Southwest Indiana. WBF facilitates partnerships and collaborations between nonprofits, businesses and municipalities, bringing the community together.

woman running beside a river

The Welborn Baptist Foundation is a community leader for healthy living and trails.

Over the years, WBF’s continued trails support has covered their service area, which is comprised of eight counties in Southwest Indiana region, five counties in Southeast Illinois, and in Henderson County, Kentucky. WBF’s dedication to the community not only assists in trail building, but also important trails programming support, funding nonprofits that provide experiences for local Trailblazers which would not be possible otherwise.

For their civic mindedness and dedication to community health and wellness, the Greenways Foundation is proud to award the Welborn Baptist Foundation as our Outstanding Corporation for 2021.


Outstanding Local Government

The Northeast Indiana Regional Coordinating Council is a voluntary organization of local governments, and acts as both the regional planning authority for nine counties, as well as the metropolitan planning organization for the Fort Wayne-New Haven-Allen County metropolitan area.

trail bridge over a street

A Pufferbelly Trail bridge spans a busy city street.

NIRCC works closely with municipal planners to develop proposed trails that connect to the largest possible populations in 11 Northeast Indana counties and prepared a comprehensive branding initiative for the regional trail system. The council developed a regional trail system name, logo and signage design/sign templates for trail identification, trail gateways, trail information and other wayfinding signs. Logos for specific trail sections were also created. NIRCC has secured resources to develop, promote, and manage the implementation of the branding initiative, called United Trails.

For their significant accomplishments in advancing trails now and into the future, the Greenways Foundation is proud to award the Northeast Indiana Regional Coordinating Council as our Outstanding Local Government for 2021.


2021 Greenways Legacy Award

Our most special award is decided by the Greenways Foundation Board of Directors and is meant to recognize an individual who has demonstrated unusual passion and dedication for trails. This year, we are pleased to honor Diana Virgil, who has been one of the driving forces behind the development of the B & O Trail for the past 20 or so years. With the help of her husband, Hal, and through her work as one of the founding members of the B & O Trail Association, Diana has raised more than $14 million for the project.

walkers and joggers on a trail

The busy B & O Trail has grown largely because of Diana’s leadership.

For her unwavering dedication and inspiring leadership, the Greenways Foundation is pleased to honor Diana Virgil with our Greenways Legacy Award for 2021.