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The Day - Sound & Country - - WALKING, CYCLING AND PADDLING -


This year marks the 20th an­niver­sary ofWalk­to­ber, which was for­merly known asWalk­ingWeek­end. Each year, about 100 guided and self-guided tours are or­ga­nized in the dozens of towns that make up the Quinebaug and Shetucket rivers val­ley Na­tional Her­itage Cor­ri­dor— the area that’s be­come pop­u­larly known as The Last Green Val­ley be­cause of its large swaths of un­de­vel­oped lands.

Many of those tours take vis­i­tors through some of the for­mer mill towns and mills that once thrived dur­ing the coun­try’s In­dus­trial Revo­lu­tion, as well as through his­toric farms, build­ings and vil­lages.

The walks be­gin on Fri­day, Oct. 1, with “Dear Old Down­town Daniel­son,” the quaint vil­lage in Killingly that re­mains a com­mer­cially vi­able down­town made up of lo­cal busi­nesses.

Walk­to­ber ends on Satur­day, Oct. 30, with three sep­a­rate tours, one in the Good­win For­est in Chap­lin, an­other at theWaldo House Mu­seum in Scot­land and a tour of the his­toric water­front in down­town Nor­wich.

That fi­nal walk in Nor­wich, Walk­to­ber of­fi­cials say, was one of the first tours to make up the itin­er­ary of walks whenWalk­ingWeek­end first launched in 1990. Lo­cal His­to­rian Dale Plum­mer will lead the walk that will start along the mouth of the Shetucket River.

Other tours that will make up this year’sWalk­to­ber sched­ule in­clude an Oct. 3 tour of the Rob­bins & Kennedy ceme­ter­ies in Vol­un­town to hear about the lives of some 39 CivilWar vet­er­ans buried there; a look at a cen­turies-old farm in Ash­ford on Oct. 2 that is be­ing brought back to its orig­i­nal farm­stead roots; a ca­noe tour of Mans­field Hol­low and the Natchaug River on Oct. 3; and a chil­dren’s hike, on Oct. 8, on the in­ner trails of theWoods at Long Pond in Brim­field, Mass.

Walk­to­ber or­ga­niz­ers rec­om­mend that those tak­ing part in any of the tours dress in lay­ers and wear com­fort­able shoes, bring in­sect re­pel­lant and be aware of the age-ap­pro­pri­ate­ness of each walk. While dogs are wel­come on some walks, or­ga­niz­ers cau­tion that only leashed dogs, and those that are friendly and vac­ci­nated, are al­lowed.

The tours are con­ducted rain or shine, un­less the guide de­ter­mines that con­di­tions are not safe or op­ti­mal for the tour.

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