Thanks to West Milford's newest Eagle Scout, nature trail opens behind Apshawa School

| 28 Sep 2011 | 03:02

WEST MILFORD — On the way to becoming an Eagle Scout, Dan Gow has left a lasting impression on the community. “The PTA was looking for someone to help build a nature trail, and they put me in charge,” said Gow, of West Milford Troop 289. They picked the right young man for the job. Gow, a 17-year-old junior at West Milford High School, completed his Eagle Merits by leading in the construction of a nature trail at Apshawa Elementary School, which officially opened on Saturday, November 5. Built by almost 100 local students, parents, and scout troops, with donations by local businesses, the trail begins at the parking area behind the school. Nature lovers, students, and people just looking for a little solitude under the trees can access the trail by passing underneath a wooden trellis crafted by Dan and his father, Jim Gow. The trail winds its way through the woods, branching off to a butterfly garden and an observation area, and leading to an outdoor classroom and to the upper field. Handmade benches by Wendell Pfeiffer line the trail, inviting people to sit and relax. West Milford Mayor Joseph A. Di Donato cut the ribbon to open the trail, and commended Gow’s efforts, noting, “The persistence and dedication it takes to get to this level of leadership is extraordinary.” Everyone is encouraged to bring a spring bulb or two to plant along the trail. Memory paves are also available for purchase to help fund the trail’s upkeep and future additions. For order forms or more information, contact Shelley Hackett at 973-838-0197.