Courtesy of the Hudson Valley Rail Trail
Chestnuts will be roasting, marshmallows will be toasting, and wagon drawn hayrides will be happening in Highland during the Hudson Valley Rail Trail
’s 20th annual WinterFest. The family event brings together over twenty regional restaurants to present their best batches of chili and compete for the “Best of Fest” People’s Choice Award in both meat and vegetarian categories. With games like broom ball and bean bag toss, craft projects hosted in the heated Lowe’s Project Tent, and time to enjoy the snowy landscape of the Hudson Valley Rail Trail, the festival is great for kids and families.
The four-mile Hudson Valley Rail Trail includes a wetlands complex with Class A protected trout stream, views of Illinois Mountain, and an original 19th century rail bed. You can hike, bike, roller blade, cross-country ski, snow shoe, or horseback ride it. It was born when the rail bridge burned in a mysterious fire in the 1970s, and rail traffic was redirected. A right-of-way easement bought by technology companies for high speed internet in the 1990s paid for the beginning of the rail trail system, which is working to expand and connect with other trail systems and sporting trails. It’s supported by the Town of Lloyd and developed in part with funds from the Greenway Conservancy.
The Hudson Valley Rail Trail’s 20th Annual WinterFest at the Hudson Valley Rail Trail Depot at 101 New Paltz Road in Highland: Saturday January 14, 2017; 11 am to 2 pm; $2 per person, children ages six and under are free, and taste one chili for fifty cents or taste them all for $8. Additional food and beverages are available at the Hudson Valley Rail Trail Grille. Call 1-781-640-0881 for more info or visit their Facebook for updates.
The Hudson Valley Rail Trail Association, the non-profit organization dedicated to creating, maintaining, promoting and improving the Hudson Valley Rail Trail, sponsors a number of events throughout the year, and all proceeds go to trail maintenance, improvements, expansions, grant matching funds, and publicity.