Marshfield, Vermont


Recreation Planning Updates

RERC Workshop
RERC Workshop

In 2022, the Town of Marshfield was selected as one of twenty-five communities from across the United States to get technical assistance through the Recreation Economy for Rural Communities Program. This program funded technical assistance from local consultants to help developed a comprehensive recreation plan for Marshfield.

On Friday evening, January 27th and Saturday, January 28, 2023, more than 50 people met to discuss ideas and aspirations for Marshfield’s recreation!  An action plan is being being developed this spring to enhance and promote outdoor recreation in Marshfield, develop economic opportunities tied to our village core and working lands, to retain and attract residents, all while maintaining our rural character and stewardship ethic. A draft copy of the plan can be found below. It will be updated and finalized by mid-June 2023.

Recreation projects currently underway include:

Extend the Old School House Commons Walking Trail

An extension of the existing walking trail is proposed to be added on an undeveloped, forested portion of the OSC properties. This trail will cross the Marshfield Creek over an old VAST bridge and loop around towards the Winooski River before heading back to the existing walking trail. Another spur is proposed to loop up towards the Marshfield Creek waterfalls. The work is proposed to be done this summer by volunteers. A grant application for trail building tools and benches has been submitted. A map of the approximate trail location can be here.

Construct a 24' x 36' Picnic Shelter

A picnic shelter will be built in 2023 adjacent to the community gardens. The shelter will be available for events and will be open for use by residents. The library anticipates to use the shelter for outdoor education events. The shelter is being funded through $23,000 in outside funding and through ARPA funds. A location map can be found here. Additional grant funds are being sought to add ADA picnic tables and an ADA grill.

Enhance Signage at Twinfield School Trails and Add a Community Event

Twinfield Union School, sits on 80 acres, much of which is forested and includes trails. The trails are used for outdoor education at the school and are also open to the public.

A goal is to provide better access to and more information about existing recreational assets at Twinfield School. Signage is proposed that will include trail maps and information about various community recreation opportunities at the school. In addition, the school and Riders of Plainfield and Marshfield will co-host a day of outdoor adventure for students, their families, and the community that would include mountain bike rides, hikes, and frisbee golf (the school has a course installed already), along with an outdoor pizza party using the school’s pizza oven and adjacent school garden. A grant has been secured to help cover costs.

Resurface Railroad Bed (Cross Vermont Trail) from Bemis Farm Road to Bailey Pond Road

The railroad bed currently is both rough and sandy in this 1.1 mile section and lacks proper drainage. It is proposed to grade and add staymat to this section of the railbed to make it more usable for walkers and bicyclists. The Select Board has committed the road crew to do this work. The Cross Vermont Trail Association has secured a $10,000 grant for the work. About $20,000 is estimated for materials. A grant application for additional funding has been submitted. This work is proposed to be completed in 2023.

Resurfacing 1200 feet of the Walking Path at OSC

This project involves grading and adding staymat to 1200 feet of the OSC walking trail from the gardens and looping back around to the other end of the parking lot. This would allow a portion of the walking trail to be ADA-compliant. A grant application for funding has been submitted. This work could occur in 2023, depending upon available grant funding. A map of the proposed ADA trail can be found here.

Improvements and Snow Clearing on Jake Martin Parking at Stranahan Forest

The Stranahan Committee is investigating possible options to make it possible to clear snow on the Jake Martin parking lot. This would allow for increased parking for winter use of the town forest.

Create a Trail Network on Land Owned and Leased by Forest Farmers

This project involves creating trails on a 2200-acre parcel under public easement through the Forest Legacy Program. The parcel is located adjacent to the railroad bed near Bailey Pond and Turtlehead Pond. This summer will include assessing existing work roads for trail use and investigating developing a trail across to Nasmith Road. Most of this project will take several years to complete due to coordination with the landowner, the Vermont Department of Forestry, and the need for grant funding. The Cross Vermont Trail Association is coordinating this project in conjunction with town volunteers.

Create a Cohesive Plan for Information Kiosks and Signs to Host Information on Recreation and Other Assets in Marshfield

This project involves developing a comprehensive inventory of recreational opportunities in and near Marshfield and then developing a plan for kiosks and signs at various locations with information on these opportunities. Printed maps may also be part of this effort. This will allow residents and visitors to better understand what recreational opportunities exists in Marshfield and the surrounding area. This will enhance the recreation economy that is important to local retail stores and lodging establishments. Technical assistance from the National Park Service Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Program has been secured to help with this task. The inventory and planning is expected to occur in 2023. The signage and related materials are expected to be completed in 2024, dependent upon available funding.