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Keystone College Trail History


The Woodlands Campus has been an integral part of the Keystone campus and an invaluable asset to the local community. Thousands of people have hiked the trails to experience nature at is finest, and have enjoyed wonderful opportunities for fishing, photography, and simply relaxing. 

Trail Construction

In 1976, the Keystone College Science Club built the first trail, The Nokomis, on the Woodlands Campus. In 1980, trail maintenance was taken over by the Nokomis Project, a summer program for pre-college students that was under the leadership of Professor Howard Jennings. Following the Nokomis Project, Keystone College students maintained the trails until 2004, when maintenance was taken over by the Keystone College Environmental Education Institute (KceeI).

Streamside / Riparian Trail

Original funding was sponsored in part by the Mid-Atlantic Center for Urban and Community Forestry under the Direction of Professor Howard Jennings. The original project was written and designed by Ernest Keller, Director of the Lackawanna County Conservation District and Tim Eichner, Keystone College graduate. Additional enhancements were made possible by an additional Growing Greener Grant. The 2009 Trail & Guide Revisions were completed by Samantha Watkins, Keystone College graduate, and edited by Nora Dillon, Assistant Director of the Keystone College Environmental Education Institute.

Nokomis Forest Stewardship Trail

Construction of the trail has been ongoing since 1981 as part of the Nokomis program. From 1980-1989 Professor Howard Jennings directed Nokomis, a Keystone summer program for pre-college students modeled after the very successful Youth Conservation Corps.            

Following the flood of January 1996, the Weekender Student Government, led by Mary Oswego and Kathy Krebs, spearheaded a community effort to rebuild the suspension bridge. Al Urban supervised the construction team of past and present students, and community members. Their efforts re-opened the back campus and its trails for all to enjoy again. The original 135ft suspension bridge was built in 1986 by the Nokomis program.

In the summer of 2009, under the Direction of Professor Howard Jennings, the original Nokomis Trail was combined with the Forest Stewardship Trail to produce the current guide. Revisions were done by Samantha Watkins and edited by Nora Dillon. The original Forest Stewardship trail was funded in part by the NEPA Urban and Community Forestry Program. Current revisions sponsored in part by the Lackawanna Heritage Valley Authority in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the National Park Service.

Water Discovery Trail

This project was made possible by the support of the Willary Foundation and Keystone College, under the Direction of Professor Howard Jennings. The trail guide was created by Dr. Jerry Skinner of Keystone College. Project coordinators included Tim Eichner, Leigh Jennings and Robert Karuzie, with additional support from Kurt Schmidt, Tom Stanbro, Ernie Keller, Director of the Lackawanna County Conservation District, and Shane Kleiner, Director Wyoming County Conservation District. The 2009 Trail & Guide revisions were completed by Samantha Watkins, Keystone graduate, and edited by Nora Dillon, Assistant Director of the Keystone College Environmental Education Institute. Revisions were sponsored in part by the Lackawanna Heritage Valley Authority in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the National Park Service.

Tree Identification Walk

Keystone's Tree Identification Walk was prepared September 1994 and revised in 1999 and 2009. Funding for this project was made possible through the United States Department of Education Title 3 Grant and Activity One - For improving Science and Mathematics Curricula. The project was prepared and designed by Garret L. Jobson, revised in 1999 by Tim Eichner, and revised in 2009 by Thomas J. McLane.

 

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