2016 Volunteer Recognition & Trail Symposium


 Save the Date for the

 2016 Volunteer Recognition & Trail Symposium


 Saturday, November 5

 11:00AM - 5:00PM

 At Ramapo College of New Jersey

Alumni Lounges*

505 Ramapo Valley Road, Mahwah, NJ 07430


Nobody loves trails quite like our volunteers. That’s why the Trail Conference is hosting our very first Trail Symposium, an all-day celebration of the outdoors and those who give their time to help connect people with nature, on Saturday, Nov. 5.

The day kicks off at 11 a.m. at Ramapo College of New Jersey, adjacent to our headquarters in Mahwah, N.J., with a salute to our incredible volunteers. Join us in honoring the people who have gone above and beyond in their work for trails during the Trail Conference’s Annual Awards. The presentation and luncheon will include a keynote speaker, Melissa Abramson, Manager of REI Outdoor Programs and Outreach. Stay the afternoon for workshops and a chance to catch up with old friends and make new ones! Click here for details and registration!

*A map of Ramapo College’s campus is available here. Please allow approximately 10 minutes to walk from the parking area to the Alumni Lounges, both highlighted on the campus map.


10:30-11:00AM…Registration & Networking

11:00AM -1:00PM…Volunteer Appreciation, Keynote, & Luncheon

1:15PM-5:00PM…Workshop Sessions


Workshops: Session 1 (1:15 – 3 p.m.)

A)     Panel Discussion: How to Meet the Changing Needs of Trail Users

Join our panel of experts as they discuss their on-the-trail experiences and reflect on the changing demographics and needs of trail users. 

Panelists: Melissa Abramson, REI Outdoor Programs and Outreach Manager

Brandee Chapman, NJDEP State Trails Coordinator

Chris Connolly, Trail Chair

Richard Zayas, Breakneck Ridge Trail Steward

Room: SC157


B)     Using the Avenza Maps App on the Trail with Jeremy Apgar, Trail Conference Cartographer

Learn how to use our digital maps on the trail, either as a volunteer working on the ground or a hiker enjoying a walk in the woods. Participants will be encouraged to share the interesting ways they’ve used the app’s abundant features. This presentation will potentially include an outdoor component to allow exploration of the app in real-time. Be sure to bring a phone or tablet to get the most out of this workshop.

Room: SC156


Workshops: Session 2 (3:15 – 5 p.m.)

A)     CPR/AED Certification Course with James Garvey, Certified Instructor  

Join CPR/AED instructor James Garvey for a Heartsaver Adult & Child CPR/AED certification course. This course will certify you for 2 years to perform CPR/AED life-saving measures. Registration is limited to 20 participants.

Room: SC156


B)     Long Pond Iron Works Site Visit with Peter Dolan, Trail Conference NJ Program Coordinator

When Hurricane Irene destroyed the bridge across the Wanaque River in 2012, the Highlands Trail between historic Long Pond Ironworks and Ringwood State Park was severed. After years of hurdles, construction has finally begun to restore meaningful hiking access to one of the most historically significant areas in northern New Jersey. Peter Dolan will describe the project, professional trail builder Eddie Walsh will showcase the construction in progress, and a member of the Friends of Long Pond Ironworks will provide historical interpretation as we walk to and from the site (an easy 15-minute walk each way).

Meet up location: Because of limited space at the trailhead, a shuttle bus will be available from the parking area of Ramapo College (at the intersection of campus roads Rhodora & Ironwood Roads, at the main parking lot). The bus will depart campus at approximately 3:20PM and return when the site visit is over, at approximately 5:30PM.


C)     “Know When to Hold ‘Em”: Playing Your Cards Against Trail Erosion with Erik Mickelson, Trail Conference Field Manager

“The secret to [a trail] survivin' is knowin' what to throw away, and knowin' what to keep.” This trail talk and walk of the Ramapo Valley County Reservation, led by Erik Mickelson, will discuss and examine trail erosion and different cards to play “when the dealin’s done.” Erik will not sing, and there are no plans to "fold, or run," but we hope attendees will "walk away" with "an ace to keep."

Meet up location: People attending this workshop will meet Erik Mickelson at the Ramapo Valley County Reservation trailhead Kiosk, located at the parking area.


Click here for details and registration!


November 5th, 2016 from 11:00 AM to  5:00 PM
Ramapo College of New Jersey - Trustee's Pavilion
505 Ramapo Valley Road
Mahwah, NJ
United States
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