The Crescent Trail Hiking Association and the Perinton Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Memorial Post 8495, are coordinating a special Veterans Day community hike at Howell Road Park in Perinton Sunday, November 11, 2018.
This short hike is open to the public with free admission and is a part of the CTHA’s monthly series of organized hikes along the Crescent Trail footpath system. Starting at 1:30 p.m., the event will give hikers a chance to experience the trail, talk with local veterans, and view U.S. military issue equipment and apparel such as a kevlar flak jacket, Kevlar helmet, load-bearing equipment, and various uniforms. For those looking for a challenge, they can even test out carrying a military-grade 70 pound Alice Pack while hiking the route.
The hike will start at the trailhead on the blue route located on the east side of Howell Road, just north of Princeton. Dave Schaeffer, a Korean War veteran and a founding member of CTHA, will welcome hikers and provide a brief introduction to Crescent Trail footpath system. The paths within Howell Road Park, a former Christmas tree farm, are a popular destination for hiking, cross-country skiing, and snow-shoeing. The park features mostly flat footpaths through a beautiful plantation of firs, pines and evergreens, and loops within adjacent wooded wetlands.
Commander of VFW Post 8495, Mike Cialini, will follow Schaeffer to speak briefly on what the VFW brings to the local veteran community and discuss the challenges veterans face when transitioning back to civilian life. VFW Post 8495 of the United States was chartered in 1946 by a group of returning WWII veterans and has since become the largest group of combat veterans in Monroe County. As a nonprofit veterans service organization, its programs work to support veterans, service members and their families, as well as communities worldwide.
Limited event parking is available at the trailhead, but attendees are also encouraged to pursue street parking alongside Howell Road and other adjacent areas as needed. While it will be a short, planned hike suitable for all ages, any veterans or hikers with time or physical limitations can notify hike leader, Mark Burgeson, in order to turn around at any point to retrace the route back to the trailhead. The majority of paths within the Crescent Trail system around Perinton are considered single-file dirt trails open to all pedestrian forms of recreation. The Crescent Trail footpaths do continue beyond Howell Road Park, leading to intersections with multi-use trails like the Erie Canalway Heritage Trail and a former interurban electric trolley line that Perinton converted from “rail to trail.”