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Blue Hill, ME

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2018

Project Category: Trails

Description: This project set out to create age-friendly trails in Blue Hill. Efforts included constructing an accessible walking path and installing benches along it to give older adults and people with mobility challenges a place to rest. Part of the town's larger Connectivity Plan, organizers hoped the trails would encourage intergenerational activities and give residents opportunities for physical activity. The route runs through Blue Hill's downtown, allowing people to walk to local amenities and shops.

Glidden, IA

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2019

Project Category: Trails

Description: Glidden's Northland Park features a mile-long trail system that winds through natural grasslands, a butterfly garden, picnic areas and more. But the park sits across a major roadway from another popular site -- the city's aquatic center. To improve connectivity, City officials set out to create a way to walk from one to the other. They installed more than 600 square feet of additional sidewalk and created a crosswalk across Highway 30, complete with flashing crossing signs to alert drivers of pedestrians.

Sullivan, ME

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Trails

Description: Sullivan has a network of hiking trials but lacked options for people with mobility challenges. To give residents of all ages and abilities a place to walk, Age-Friendly Sullivan installed an accessible walking trail at the Sorrento-Sullivan Recreation Center. First, volunteers worked to prepare an underused area on the rec center's property, creating drainage culverts and mowing grass. Then they spread crushed gravel to create a hard, flat trail surface. Before, the recreation center offered several amenities aimed at children and youth, including a playground, basketball courts and a skate park. The trail represents an offering people of all ages -- including older adults -- can use. Since creating the trail, the age-friendly initiative has worked with partners to add benches, fitness equipment and a story walk along the route.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Projects

Portland, ME

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2022

Project Category: Entrepreneurship and improved economic resilience

Description: This project piloted an age-friendly business designation in Portland. The designation encourages local businesses to adopt practices that accommodate older adult customers. Participating businesses receive a certificate, as well as window decals advertising their status as an age-friendly business. Additionally, the Ramp Up for Accessibility project provided portable ramps and wireless doorbells to locations that are open to the public.

Portland, OR

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Entrepreneurship and improved economic resilience

Description: Following COVID-19 shutdowns, Alberta Main Street wanted to encourage residents to visit small businesses in the Alberta District. To increase foot traffic in the neighborhood, they hosted a series of community events. Christmas, Halloween and other holiday-themed gatherings drew large crowds to the district. Additionally, they launched a monthly Last Thursday series, which showcased local artists' work and offered activities for families with children. Organizers worked to ensure each event celebrated the neighborhoods' diversity and culture, as well as its African American business owners. Alberta Main Street hopes future events help shield legacy businesses from displacement. In the future, they are also planning a grant program to help owners historically overlooked by traditional lenders.

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AARP Maine State Office

53 Baxter Boulevard
Suite 202
Portland, ME 04101
United States

Phone: 866-554-5380
Fax: 207-775-5727
Email: [email protected]