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News Release    

September 18, 2008      

For Further Information Contact:
William R. Steinhaus, County Executive
(845) 486-2000

Trail Users Enjoy Recent Improvements to Harlem Valley Rail Trail
"Walk for A Cure" Event on Saturday, September 20th

Poughkeepsie…Dutchess County Executive William R. Steinhaus and County Parks Director Steve Olsen are pleased to welcome the Amenia Lions Club to the Harlem Valley Rail Trail as they host their 6th annual Walk for A Cure event on Saturday, September 20th starting at 10am to raise money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund. 

“Head on out to the Harlem Valley Rail Trail and participate in the Walk for A Cure event,” said County Executive Steinhaus.   “Spending time with family and friends out on the Harlem Valley Rail Trail, while at the same time raising money to help out a great cause, is certainly a wonderful way to spend a weekend day.” 

Participants in the Walk for A Cure event and other visitors will be able to enjoy recently completed improvements to the Harlem Valley Rail Trail.     The HVRT was recently realigned to cross Route 343 at a 90 degree angle.   This trail enhancement improves the sight distance for trail users and makes crossing the state highway safer.    New pavement markings on Route 343 and the HVRT also help to make the intersection more visible to both motorists and pedestrians.

Trail users will also benefit from recently updated and improved signage along the trail, replacing fading and damaged signs.   Other improvements to the HVRT are set to begin later this month including the replacement of aluminum gates and posts which limit access to the HVRT for motorized vehicles.

Plans continue for Phase IV of the HVRT, which will span approximately 8 miles and complete a key link in the Rail Trail between Millerton in northeastern Dutchess County and Ancram in southeastern Columbia County.   The Dutchess County Department of Public Works Engineering Team is currently working with New York State Department of Environmental Conversation (NYSDEC) and other state and federal agencies including the New York State Department of Transportation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Agency as they review alternatives for dealing with the many ecological challenges of this project.

Saturday’s Walk for A Cure event will start at the trail access point at Mechanic Street in Amenia.    Participants can choose between 1 and 2 mile walk options.   Pledge sheets are available at various local merchants in Amenia or by calling event coordinator Ernie Stoetzner at (845) 789-1065.

To learn more about all Dutchess County Parks including the Dutchess Rail Trail, visit


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