SHERIDAN – On the banks of Mill Creek below Jackson’s Garden a new nature trail now winds it’s way through cottonwoods and brush thanks to a group of Montana Conservation Corps volunteers from Bozeman.
The group of nearly 20 volunteers was in Sheridan last week for two days to build the trail with pulaskis, pickaxes and saws. The effort was part of a National AmeriCorps week, said Marguerite Jodry, the garden’s AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer who has been working with the garden for nearly a year.
Katie Karas was the leader of the group from Bozeman. She hails from Maryland, but is out in Montana for the season to be a youth leader for the conservation corps.
Excursions, like the one to Sheridan, are part of the training leaders with the corps go through each spring in preparation for the summer field season, Karas said.
“During our training we’ve been doing a lot of projects for area non-profits,” she said.
Jackson’s Garden is a community garden that was donated to the Sheridan community by Les Jackson and his late wife Betty. The garden’s mission is to “sustainably support gardening for production, education, and the enjoyment of our community.”
“Things are really taking off I would say,” Jodry said.
The garden offers a variety of educational opportunities and different events for the public. It also offers working memberships, which have doubled since last year, she said.
“Working members contribute 10 hours a month and receive a share of produce,” Jodry said.
The idea for the nature trail has been in the works for some time, she said.
“The trail is going to be used for nature walks that we’ll kind of organize and advertise with the community and through the schools,” Jodry said.
The trail essentially runs the length of the garden’s property along Mill Creek where the river bottom is wide enough to accommodate the primitive trail.
Beyond the trail, the garden and its board of directors is working on planning summer events and is anxiously awaiting the arrival of a greenhouse in the next few weeks.
For more information, go to their website.