Rockwell donates land to TFF, auction fundraiser Sunday
Thursday, August 15, 2013 2:56 AM
Rockwell Collins, Inc. in Decorah has donated land for the Trails From Freeport (TFF) project.
Rockwell Collins has donated two acres of land adjoining its Freeport facility to the Trails From Freeport (TFF) project. Above, from left, TFF Board members Dale Putnam and Jerry Weis, Tom Hauber, a TFF Board member and environmental, safety and health specialist at Rockwell, Rockwell Plant Manager Sarah Theiler, and TFF Board members Heidi Rockweiler and Cindy Simpson. (Decorah Newspapers photo by Sarah Strandberg)
TFF is raising money to build a trail from the village of Freeport to the Trout Run Trail near Walmart. Currently Freeport residents must ride their bikes or walk along county road A-52, the county's busiest road outside the city of Decorah, to access the Trout Run Trail that encircles the city of Decorah.
"The TFF Board is extremely excited to have received a donation of land from Rockwell Collins. Approximately two acres of land adjoining the Rockwell Collins Freeport area facility in Decorah will now be a part of the future trail connecting Freeport safely to the Trout Run Trail," said Board member Dale Putnam.
The donated property allows for an easy connection between the trailhead in Freeport Park to the area leading up to and crossing River Road, he said.
"This donation and the involvement by Rockwell Collins is without a doubt the right thing to do. Numerous employees currently bike to work and take walks in the area while on break. Now individuals will be able to use the trail offering a safe, accessible option for our employees, along with other businesses and residents in the Freeport area," said Tom Hauber, environmental, safety and health specialist at Rockwell Collins in Decorah and a TFF Board member.
TFF has raised $130,000 through local fundraising over the past year, toward a goal of $190,000. Grant funds have been sought as part of a $2.2 million Transportation Investment General Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant application.
If the grant is approved, the new trail section would be extended north to the Haugen Hummel subdivision. The grant also would pay for redoing 2.46 miles of River Road from Moellers Drive to Drake Hill Road and establish a total of 2.52 miles of asphalt trail.
TFF Board member Heidi Rockweiler said if the Tiger grant is awarded, the grant terms would require construction to take place next year.
"Because of the TIGER grant, we have a shot at having double the trail. We would love to include that community," she said of Haugen Hummel.
If the grant isn't successful, TFF plans to break ground this fall.
TFF's next fundraiser is an auction Sunday, Aug. 18, at American Auction Sales and Ag Supply east of Decorah off Highway 9. The auction begins at 11 a.m. and lunch will be available. Proceeds from both the auction and lunch stand will go toward the trail.
A preview of auction items is 9 a.m. -noon, Saturday, Aug. 17.
"We have a lot of nice things ... there's a wide variety," Rockweiler said.
A partial listing of auction items appeared in an advertisement in the Tuesday, Aug. 13, Public Opinion and this week's Dollar Stretcher.
Rockweiler said TFF Board members have been humbled by the support for the trail project.
"We're very appreciative for everything the Decorah area has done," she said.
Donations for the trail project can be sent to Northeast Iowa RC&D, in care of Trails from Freeport, PO Box 125, Decorah, IA 52101.