Posted by Stephanie Johnson on Jan 10, 2021
Peabody Marks 100th Anniversary with Trail Improvements
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, several opportunities to stage a groundbreaking ceremony for the Rotary Club of Peabody’s recreational trail improvements were shut down. But it didn’t stop the movement.
The year 2020 marked the Peabody Club’s 100th anniversary, and while the year of celebrations did not turn out the way it was originally planned, the Club was able to work with the City of Peabody and its Parks and Recreation department to invest in several improvements in the city’s network of recreational trails. Among the augmentations in the works committed to over the course of the year is a multi-use water fountain on the Crowley Spur. A water line has recently been installed by the city about 150 yards from the trail’s connection with the Danvers Rail Trail, and the club has committed to the fountain, benches, and beautification to welcome rail trail users to Peabody.
Aside from the 0.7-mile Crowley Spur that connects Lowell Street to the Danvers trail, Peabody has the 4.4-mile Independence Greenway that goes from the North Shore Mall to the Ipswich River in Middleton, and the South Peabody Bike Path that abuts Spring Pond. The Rotary Club of Peabody has committed to investing in barrels, bicycle maintenance stations, benches, and kiosks that promise to educate trail users about the area, its natural resources, and its historical significance. 
The East Coast Greenway, which aspires to complete an off-road connection from Maine to Florida and attracts visitors from throughout the country, includes the Crowley Spur and a mile and a half of the Independence Greenway. 
“I’m proud to be part of a club that values enhancing the community’s ability to get outside and be active,” said Rotary Club treasurer and 2-time Olympic Trials Marathon qualifier Dan Vassallo. “The trails in Peabody are among the city’s greatest assets, and I’m thrilled that our club is committed to making the trails even more attractive to our residents and visitors.”

The Club still plans to commemorate its centennial project, but it will have to wait until its 101st year, amid warmer weather, thawed ground, and better public health conditions.