SYRACUSE — A public ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled for the Conklin Bay Boardwalk and Trail. The ceremony will be conducted by the Syracuse-Wawasee Trail Committee at 11 a.m. Thursday, July 30, at the entrance to the Wawasee Area Conservancy Foundation headquarters on SR 13, south of Syracuse.
The ribbon-cutting represents a significant step forward for the trails committee. It received a grant in May 2019 from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources’ Next Level Trails program. Construction began in October. While the last section of the Conklin Bay boardwalk and trail was completed in March, the trail officially opened in May.
The new trail segment includes a third-of-a-mile boardwalk through the west side of the Rolland Wetland Conservation Area. Also, the boardwalk has three overlook areas and an observatory allowing nature enthusiasts the opportunity to view and enjoy a natural lake ecosystem. The trail’s concrete sidewalk continues south two-thirds of a mile along SR 13, past the WACF drive to North Grandview Drive.
The trail also connects visitors to WACF’s Levison-LaBrosse Education Center where they can explore three walking trails through preserved and reclaimed wetlands.
“The committee extends a huge thank you to its Conklin Bay donors for their support during this project that actually spans more than five years. We deeply appreciate their generosity, collaboration, encouragement and trust as we continue to make a connected community a reality,” said the trail committee’s President Kay Young.
The following top tier donors are:
• Next Level Trails, administered by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources
• Wawasee Area Conservancy Foundation
• Ruth Lilly Philanthropic Foundation
• Dekko Foundation
• K21 Foundation
• Miller Family Foundation
• Kosciusko County Convention and Visitors Bureau
• Laudeman Family Charitable Fund
• Janet and Max Laudeman