REI gives Austin trails a boost

Hill Country Conservancy Executive Director George Cofer hikes on the Violet Crown Trail near Brodie Lane and 290 West in 2015. The conservancy was one of six Austin organizations to receive a grant from REI. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN

Austin trails are getting a boost, thanks to grants from REI Co-op.

The outdoor retailer committed $75,000 to six local nonprofit organizations this week as part of its annual grant program.

The money goes to:

• The Austin Ridge Riders Mountain Bike Club gets $8,000 to help build the Country Club Creek Greenbelt Trail.
• The Hill Country Conservancy gets $10,000 to implement a volunteer program to support ongoing maintenance along the Violet Crown Trail.
• The Shoal Creek Conservancy lands $22,000 to extend the Shoal Creek Trail by 7 miles, connecting it to Lady Bird Lake.
• The Trail Foundation gets $10,000 to create a new public access boat ramp to Lady Bird Lake at the Holly Point Water Access Point.

• Keep Austin Beautiful receives $10,000 to support bi-monthly water and shoreline cleanups of Lady Bird Lake.
• American Rivers Inc. gets $15,000 to efforts to protect and restore rivers and conserve clean water in Austin.

“Our goal is to awaken a lifelong love for the outdoors in everyone,” said Marc Berejka, REI community and government affairs director, and REI Foundation president, in a press release. “One of the primary ways we do this is by stewarding and maintaining the outdoor spaces in the communities where our members and employees live, work and play. This year’s investment will help build and maintain trails, protect waterways and create access to outdoor recreation.”

Author: Pam LeBlanc

Pam LeBlanc writes about fitness and travel for the Austin American-Statesman. She has worked for the Statesman since 1998 and written her weekly fitness column, Fit City, since 2004.

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