For Release Immediately - July 2, 2012
Segment Adopters Mobilized for the First Time
CINCINNATI — July 2, 2012 — Early on Saturday morning, June 30, after a violent storm, the Segment Adopters of the Friends of the Little Miami State Park (FLMSP) mobilized to deal with the emergency. The damage was significant. On Friday night after the storm, eight Ohio State parks were without power and Shannon Hoffer of Ohio State Parks estimated that the Little Miami State Park had at least one tree down every mile.
FLMSP was more than ready. In September of 2011, they had divided the 50-mile long trail into 24 "segments"; as of January of 2012 all 24 segments had one or more Segment Adopters.
This was the first time our Segment Adopters had been mobilized for an emergency, and the group tackled the problem efficiently over the 50-miles length of the trail. First out, Don & Judy Mills, Paul Leiter, and Chris Potensky rode the trail providing real-time intel about trail conditions to Aaron Rourke, Adopt-a-Trail Coordinator who was command and control for the day.
Paul Morgan, Rick and Emily Forrester, Jim and Maxine Fischer started at the southern end of the trail with a chainsaw and headed north. At 3:00 pm Don Hahn relieved Paul Morgan. This crew cut up and removed eight trees.
On Saturday, Steve Hobart rode the trail south from Branch Hill New Guinea to Milford noting and reporting two downed trees. On Sunday Steve returned to clear the trail of debris for the one mile from Branch Hill-New Guinea Road to Beech Road.
Even though Morgans Campground had 20 of its own trees down, Dirk Morgan, his tractor, chainsaw, and blower started at Ft. Ancient and worked south to Stubbs Mill cutting up and removing over nine trees.
Bill and Debra Ash were on their Ft. Ancient to Strout Road segment doing what they could with hand tools and deferring the chainsaw work to Dirk Morgan.
Moving to the north, Richard Feldmann and his bowsaw were able to cut up and remove three eight-inch diameter trees and reconnoiter the nine miles from Hedges Road to New Burlington Road, inventorying trail conditions for other Segment Adopters.
Dennis and Kathy Lewis and another couple started at Hedges Road, just south of Xenia, and worked one and a half hours to open the trail 2.7 miles to Richland Road --- all with hand tools.
There were likely other anonymous volunteers along the trail doing what they could to restore the trail to a passable and safe condition.
When Saturday began, 20 of the 24 segments were partially or completely impassable; by the end of the day this number had been reduced to eight.
Shannon Hoffer has informed us that Ohio State Parks will have a "full court press" Monday, July 2nd, on the Little Miami State Park with chippers, chainsaws, and trucks to remove the debris.
To all, the FLMSP says, "Thank you". From where we sit, it worked the way it was supposed to work.
Shannon Hoffer of Ohio State Parks says "this is the future of the Little Miami State Park --- the State of Ohio, working with friends groups, to go above and beyond. There are still people without power in the region, but the bike trail is open. I want to personally thank the Friends of the Little Miami State Park --- I have never had this kind of coordinated interaction with volunteers in my career."