Western Montana Community Makes Interpretive Project at Travelers’ Rest a Reality
(Lolo, MT) – Montana State Parks (stateparks.mt.gov) announced today that construction has begun on the Crossroads Interpretive Plaza at Travelers’ Rest State Park. The project, first proposed over a year ago had been stalled due to insufficient funding. However, a group of local individuals led by Jackson Contractor Group of Missoula have stepped forward to make the project a reality.
Some funding had been secured from private donations through the non-profit Travelers’ Rest Preservation and Heritage Association (TRPHA) and a bequest to the park. When those funds didn’t match the estimated cost of the project, TRPHA approached Jackson Contractor Group. Jackson then coordinated a serious of donated or reduced products, labor and materials to complete the plaza.
“This project will become the centerpiece of so many visits to the park,” said Travelers’ Rest State Park Manager Loren Flynn. “It will be the gathering spot for the beginning of school field trips, a great spot for a photo to share on social media and a reminder to all of us that the trails that led Lewis and Clark to this place were used by people since time immemorial.” TRPHA Executive Director Molly Stockdale added, “our role as non-profit partner to the park is to assist in projects that add value to our visitors experience to Travelers’ Rest – especially in these times when funding for State Parks continues to decline.”
Hattie Redmon, Proposal Coordinator for Jackson Contractor Group and member of the TRPHA Board of Directors commented, “We get to work on a lot of cool projects being in the construction industry. But projects that improve the communities where we live and work, like the interpretive plaza, are why we do what we do.”
In addition to the private individuals who supported the project, TRPHA and Jackson secured support from the following businesses:
“We’re continually thankful for the support of the community to help us reach our potential,” said Flynn. Because much of the labor is volunteer, the project will span the next 3-4 weeks with significant work taking place on Saturdays. The plaza is slated to be open to the public by May 1, in time for the busy spring field trip season. The park remains open, although park visitors are reminded to be careful in the construction zone.
Travelers’ Rest State Park, located in Lolo, Montana, is the only archaeologically verified campsite of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. For centuries Native Americans; including the Salish, Pend d’Oreille and Nez Perce, used the area as a campsite and trail junction. With Lolo Creek running through the park, Travelers’ Rest Sate Park is an idyllic spot for nature walks and bird watching.
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Travelers’ Rest State Park