Another $42,500 has been secured to help fund costs associated with the Bourne Rail Trail. The funding was obtained as a result of participation by the Friends of the Bourne Rail Trail in the 15th-annual Buzzards Bay Watershed Ride.
The Buzzards Bay Watershed Ride is a fundraiser benefiting the work of the Buzzards Bay Coalition to restore and protect clean water in Buzzards Bay. The annual bike ride was held on October 3 and, to date, it has raised a total of $392,947 for the Coalition and its efforts.
A press release from the Friends of the Bourne Rail Trail noted that its team, the Bourne Rail Trail Blazers, “were recognized as the top fundraising team at $45,840.” The team surpassed its matching goal of $42,500, the release stated.
“This means that in addition to providing significant funding for the important work of the Buzzards Bay Coalition, the Friends secured a gift of $42,500 to continue our efforts in expediting the design of the Bourne Rail Trail,” the release said.
The Friends also reported that Blazers team member Kenneth Cheitlin was the event’s top individual fundraiser, having raised $12,096. Mr. Cheitlin noted that this was the fourth year that the Blazers participated in the Watershed Ride.
Mr. Cheitlin is also a member of the Bourne Town Administrator’s Advisory Committee on Pedestrian Bicycle Pathway, the group charged with overseeing installation of a 6.5-mile extension of the Shining Sea Bikeway from North Falmouth to the Cape Cod Canal. He said that participation in the Watershed Ride has provided the opportunity to “increase awareness of the effort to create the Bourne Rail Trail.”
“People from all over the region and beyond hear about the Bourne Rail Trail and, thanks to the Coalition permitting us a booth at the after-party, we have the opportunity to speak to many interested people about the details of the project,” he said.
Mr. Cheitlin pointed out that the rail trail will improve road safety, benefit local businesses and real estate values, and “be a first-class amenity for residents and visitors to the Upper Cape.”
The Watershed Ride offers three routes of differing lengths that wind through farmland, coastal villages, cities, cranberry bogs and back roads between Rhode Island and Cape Cod.
It begins in Little Compton, Rhode Island before quickly crossing over into Massachusetts and passing through Westport, Dartmouth, New Bedford, Fairhaven, Acushnet, Mattapoisett, Rochester, Wareham, Bourne and Falmouth before ending in Woods Hole.
There are three separate start lines: A 100-mile start line begins at Sakonnet Point in Little Compton; a 75-mile start line begins at Horseneck Beach State Reservation in Westport; and a 35-mile start line begins at Eastover Farm in Rochester.
Fundraising for the Buzzards Bay Watershed Ride will remain open through Sunday, October 17.