Outdoor Sports Center is talking the talk and putting its money behind where you walk the walk–the Norwalk River Valley Trail (NRVT). The long-standing local sporting goods retailer has set up a one-to-one matching grant challenge for the NRVT’s year-end fundraising campaign, “Join our Journey.”

Outdoor Sports will match every donation made to the NRVT from now through Dec. 20, up to $5,000. So, for example, with a donation of $50, the NRVT will receive $100 to continue to build more miles of trail.

In 2021, the NRVT is scheduled to build an additional three miles, with sections in Redding, Wilton and Norwalk. Planning has also begun on an addition to the Wilton East Loop, north of Skunk Lane. Additionally, the NRVT announced the authorization of a new trail section at Tarrywile Park in Danbury.

For every new portion of the trail, funds are needed for permits, wetlands approvals, state/local leases, engineering, trail design, and, of course, actual construction. The average cost of construction alone is $250 per foot. While the NRVT does receive grants from the government and foundations, much of the funding comes from local individuals.

Donations can be made on NRVT’s new website or mailed to:

Friends of the NRVT, Inc.
PO Box 174
Georgetown, CT 06829

“We are so pleased that our friends at Outdoor Sports Center in Wilton are supporting new miles of the NRVT. This year, COVID showed us how important it is to get outside and now there are many new fans of the trail,” said Beth Merrill, NRVT’s executive director. “Donating to the NRVT is a gift that comes back to you in the form of new trail to explore and enjoy. We’re so grateful for Outdoor Sports Center’s support.”

When completed, the NRVT will be a 30-mile trail running from Calf Pasture Beach in Norwalk, though the towns of Wilton, Ridgefield, and Redding, and terminating at Rogers Park in Danbury. Currently, The NRVT is eight miles of well-loved and frequently visited trail, with sections currently in Norwalk and Wilton only. There are still 22 miles more to build.

Outdoor Sports Center is located at 80 Danbury Rd., Wilton. , just 1.7 miles south of a NRVT trailhead (Rt. 7/Wolfpit Rd). And when the NRVT is completed, a section of the trail will be just across the road from the store.

During the first three months of the Coronavirus pandemic, the NRVT trail use spiked by over 260%.