Auction raises funds for area trails

The Friends of Madison County Parks & Trails (FMCPT) completed the Madison County portion of the Ohio To Erie Trail in December, but their work is not done.

The non-profit group has plans to develop connectors and park areas along the trail. To do that, they need to continue to raise matching money for construction grants. They hope for repeat success with their sixth annual auction, set for May 3 at the Madison County Senior Center, 280 W. High St., London.

The Senior Center will open at 8 a.m. at which time coffee and doughnuts will be available. The silent auction will run from 9 a.m. to noon. The live auction starts at 10; lunch will be available at 11; and a bicycle raffling drawing is set for 2 p.m. The day will include a 50-50 raffle, as well. Tim Beathard & Associates will donate the auctioneering services.

Featured auction items include: auto-graphed footballs from The Ohio State University and the Pittsburgh Steelers; an office copier; original artwork by local artists; gift certificates and sports event tickets, including tickets to the OSU vs. Minnesota football game; an airplane ride; a child’s wooden rocking llama; and more.

“We’re focusing more this year on newer and gently used items,” said Wayne Roberts, FMCPT president, noting that a riding lawn mower and piano also may be among the items up for bid. “We still will take items up to the last day.”

Proceeds from the auction will help to fund the group’s long-range projects:

• to connect the western and eastern ends of the trail through London;

• to open a park and parking area on Center Street for public access to the trail and a future nature preserve;

• to develop a connector trail to Madison Lake State Park;

• to design a signed road route from Route 40 in West Jefferson to the Wilson Road entrance of the main trail;

• and to create a connector trail from Choctaw Lake and Summerford to the main trail.

“These projects are very early on. We have no specific routes yet, but we do have letters of support from government agencies as we talk to property owners,” Roberts said. “We’re trying to build up support for the idea of these trails.”

Roberts noted that FMCPT is always looking for interested individuals to be part of project committees. The group meets at 7 p.m. on the third Wednesday of each month at the Madison County Senior Center. For more information, go to, call 740-852-0077, or send e-mail to

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