The Year was 2000. All across Canada the question
had been asked by individuals and communities,
“What shall we do to mark the Millennium?” In
Arnprior, Ontario, the suggestions were legion. The
one, however, that rose to the fore came from the
Arnprior Rotary Club member Andy Andrews. The
suggestion was a walking trail. A walking trail that
would one day form an integral part of the Trans
Canada Trail, from Ottawa to North Bay, as this was
the original east ‐ west route.

Rotary members took this Trail idea to Town Council
who were in the process of setting up an
Environmental Committee to look at all Millennium
projects. Local volunteer Allison Armstrong accepted
the position of Chair and in time the scope of various
suggestions was narrowed down to the Trail and a
related Mural and Brochures. Members of the
community were soon co‐opted to the committee, and
walking clubs were approached for suggestions. Scouts
Canada under the leadership of Joe Camelon and the
Girl Guides represented by Jane Peters were recruited.
The Grade 12 Geography class at Arnprior and District
High School under the direction of Mr Terry Dawson
was given the task of mapping out the trails. The
Millennium Trails Project formed a part of the
curriculum for the Grade 12 Urban Geography Class in
the Fall of 1999.

As the Trails were being laid out there arose a need for
gravel, grading, wood chips and lumber. Local
contractors were approached. Thomas Cavanagh
Construction, M Sullivan & Son Construction, and
Gardner Tree Removal immediately responded. The
Town of Arnprior councillors and staff got behind
supporting the trails including committee member and
Town Councillor Anita Hamilton who helped to obtain
a Grant from the Canada Millennium Partnership to
help fund the project.

Then, one by one businesses and individuals
became involved and gave freely of their time,
talent, and resources to make the Trails a reality.
Having been freed of other responsibilities at
Eagle Air Conveying, Jane Peters cleaned up,
scanned, and corrected blueprints in order to
provide three maps of the Town highlighting the
Trails. Joe Camelon of the Scouts supervised the
building of the kiosks which are conveniently
located to display the maps for walkers. The kiosks
may be found at the Hydro Park, Robert Simpson
Park, on Division Street at the entrance to the
Grove, and at the Bell Tower on Madawaska
Boulevard.

Members of the Environmental Committee,
renamed the Millennium Trails Committee, turned
their attention to putting together a descriptive
brochure, not only outlining the Trails, but giving
an historical resume of many of the buildings
along the Trails. These were available to be picked
up at many area businesses and town buildings.
And are now available on the Town of Arnprior
Website. Symbols were then prepared, triangular
in shape, to identify the Trails Green for the Gillies
Trail, Yellow for the Heritage Trail, and Blue for the
MacLachlan Trail. All chosen to emphasize
Arnprior's history. These have now been put in
place. A beautiful wall mural, created and painted
by Tara Pocket shows the location of the Trails on
a Town Map, was erected by members of the
Rotary Club and friends on the north wall of the
Gallery Gift Shop on John Street North. The
scaffolding for that part of the project was
supplied by Stavanow Construction. Three framed
pictures, each depicting one of the Trails was
presented to Council and they have now been
mounted in the vestibule and stairway of the Town Hall.
 
The Arnprior Trails are a Millennium Project. One
man’s dream , that of Rotarian Andy Andrews, that
became a community millennium project. A project
greatly encouraged and assisted by Gerhard Peters,
President of The Arnprior Rotary Club. Time, talent,
energies and resources and permission to cross
boundaries plus the generous gift of resources and
personnel from Eagle Air Conveying, have
contributed to the completion of the Arnprior
Millennium Project. Every gift has been received
with much appreciation. The young men and
women of the Scouts and Guides agreed to make
the Trails their project for the future. They continue
the task of keeping the Trails clean.

On July 1st and as a very important part of The
Town of Arnprior's Millennium Canada Day
celebrations His Worship Mayor Leonard Shean
officially dedicated and opened the Arnprior Trails.
The Trails are now ours to enjoy and experience.