Author Archives: Tim Blagden

sample CLSRT raffle ticket

2024 Raffle – Tickets $25 each or 5 for $100

Now’s your chance to score an incredible electric assist gravel bike and other prizes in the Concord-Lake Sunapee Rail Trail Raffle. Donations are $25 per ticket, or 5 for $100. Limited to 2500 tickets. The raffle drawing will be held May 19, 2024 at 3pm at Cafe One East in Warner, NH. You do not need to be present at the drawing to win.

Check back here for additional prizes leading up to the raffle drawing.

Tickets can be purchased online using the PayPal buttons below:

$25 Tickets:

$100 for 5 Tickets:

Bianchi Impulso E-Allroad GRX 600 electric gravel bike

Electric assist gravel bike
You will want to ride all the rail trails and gravel bike rides with this Bianchi Impulso E-Allroad GRX 600. A gorgeous bike donated by S&W Sports with a value at the time of donation of $3,099.
This bike is a size medium.

One Week in a private condo in North Conway, NH.

Go on a balloon ride!
Take to the skies at sunrise for a spectacular  experience that lasts approximately one hour ~ Sailing in three dimensions!  The complete excursion is approximately 3 hours. The flight experience concludes with a Champagne or Sparkling Cider Toast.
(Weather dependent and passengers must be physically fit to participate and get in the basket safely)
$600 value
Voucher good for one year.

Spend a day on the Atlantic Ocean!
From home port of Manchester-by-the-Sea you can go to Gloucester, through the Annisquam canal to Crane’s Beach, or down to Marblehead or Boston. If the weather is right a trip to Provincetown to whale watch is possible. The boat comes with a captain and can accommodate up to 4 guests.

2-Day Weekend in a private condo in North Conway, NH

Kearsarge classic gravel ride image

Two complimentary tickets to the Kearsarge Klassic gravel ride on August 10, 2024.

Gift certificate to Reeds North restaurant, Warner NH.

Velcro signature socks

Velocio signature socks
Colors vary. 5 pair donated by Granite State Wheelers bicycle club. Representative image shown.

CLSRT 2024 Calendar of Events

  • All board meetings are on Mondays. All start at 6:30PM.
    Board meetings are open to the public.
  • Also, not in bold, are other places where we have a presence. Come by and say hello.
  • January 22nd – Board Meeting Orr & Reno, 45 S Main St, Concord NH
  • Feb 5th – Concord School Board meeting (donation of bikes for K-1 P.E. Classes) 38 Liberty St, Concord
  • Feb 7th – Presentation to Warner Conservation Comm, Warner Town Hall 7:00 PM
  • Feb 14th – Concord Conservation Commission 7:00 PM 41 Green St. Concord
  • Feb 21st – Concord Planning Board 7:00 PM City Council Chambers, 37 Green St, Concord
  • February 19th – Board Meeting Pillsbury Free Library, 18 E Main St, Warner, NH
  •   March 13th – Warner Town Meeting Town Hall. Warner, NH 6:00 PM
  • March 18th – Board Meeting Hopkinton Town Library, 61 Houston Dr, Hopkinton, NH
  • National Bike Summit March 19-21 Washington DC
  • April 15th – Board Meeting & Annual Meeting Sugar River Bank, 2 W Main St, Warner, NH
  •   May 18th – Spring Into Warner CLSRT Tent from 9:00 – 3:00.
  •   May 18th – CNHBC Bike Swap 8-5. S&W Sports 296 S Main St, Concord, NH
  •   May 19th – CNHBC Bike Swap 8-1S&W Sports 296 S Main St, Concord, NH
  • May 19th 3:00 PM CLSRT Raffle Drawing at Cafe One East.
  • May 20th – Board Meeting Brown Memorial Library, 78 W Main, Bradford NH
  • June 17th –  Veterans Hall, 944 Rt 103, Newbury, NH
  •   June 20th – Market Days Main St Concord NH CLSRT Tent from 10:00 -10:00
  •   June 21st – Market Days Main St Concord NH CLSRT Tent from 10:00 -10:00
  •   June 22nd – Market Days Main St Concord NH CLSRT Tent from 10:00 – 8:00
  • July 15th – Board Meeting Riverhill Grange, 32 Horse Hill Rd, Concord, NH
  •   August 10th – Kearsarge Klassic Rest Stop Potter Place Andover 7:00 – 11:00 CLSRT Tent
  • August 19th – Board Meeting Main Street Bookends, 16 E Main St, Warner, NH
  •   Sept 7th – Pedaling for Payson Elm Brook Park Hopkinton 7-11 CLSRT Tent
  • Sept 16th – Board Meeting Contoocook Depot, 896 Main St., Contoocook, NH
  •   October 12th – Warner Fall Foliage Festival CLSRT Tent Cafe One East 9-4
  •   October 13th – Warner Fall Foliage Festival CLSRT Tent Cafe One East 9-4
  • October 21 –  Board Meeting Bradford Elementary School 163 Old Warner Rd, Bradford
  • November 18 – Board Meeting Orr & Reno, 45 S Main Concord NH 
  • December 16th – Board Meeting Warner Town Hall (Upstairs) 5 E Main St, Warner

2023 CLSRT Tent Events

We like to share information about the trail and do that throughout the year.

Spring Into Warner, Market Days, Kearsarge Klassic, Sierra Club Event, Pedaling for Payson, Warner Fall Foliage Festival

Spring Into Warner

The weekend after Mothers Day is a busy one for us. We try to support both Spring Into Warner and the CNHBC Bike Swap at S&W Sports in Concord. This year our tent was up at Spring Into Warner.

Market Days in Concord

Intown Concord puts on a fantastic event in June where Main St is closed to traffic and people from all over the region turn out to see what Concord has to offer. Come see us in 2024 at Market Days.

Kearsarge Klassic

The Kearsarge Klassic is a gravel ride put on by GRVL.NET each August. It starts and finishes at Cafe One East in downtown Warner, NH. We look forward to staffing the rest stop at Potter Place along the Northern Rail Trail in Andover. We talk with the 300 participants about how we are working to deliver a similar great riding experience with our trail. And the grilled PB & Bacon sandwiches are a rider favorite.

Sierra Club Rail Trail Event

In early September we co-hosted an event on the Concord section of the CLSRT. It was a chance for people to come to the trail for a short talk with Q&A followed by either a walk to the beaver deceiver or a bike ride on the rail trail.

Pedaling for Payson

This September event raises money for support for cancer patients at Concord Hospital. They have road courses, gravel courses and a mountain bike course. This year part of the course was on the Stevens Rail Trail section of the CLSRT. We really enjoyed talking with everyone and hope to be back next year.

Warner Fall Foliage Festival

Each Columbus Day weekend in October the Town of Warner holds is Fall Foliage Festival. You can find us on the front lawn of Cafe One East.

Bicycles for the Kearsarge School District

In 2023 a group consisting of the Warner Police Department (managers of the Rosa Valpey Trust Fund), Central NH Bicycle Coalition, the Bike-Walk Alliance of NH, S&W Sports, Cyr Lumber and the Friends of the Concord-Lake Sunapee Rail Trail donated a fleet of bicycles and related gear to the Kearsarge Regional School District so the PE teachers in the four elementary schools could teach all the kids in Kindergarten and first grade how to ride bikes. The fleet of bikes rotate from one school to the next. The result is every child in the seven town district will be taught how to ride in school.

In five weeks, with two classes per week, kids went from never having been on a bike to riding on a rail trail. See how they started on balance bikes – bikes with no pedals! – and then progress to riding with pedals. No training wheels involved.

We believe kids all learning to ride together with everyone using the same equipment creates a positive first introduction to cycling. We hope that fosters a desire to do more biking once the unit completes. The kids were having an absolute blast on this day and the teachers and staff supervising reported the unit had been very well received by everyone.

Area families looking for bicycles can take advantage of the annual spring bike swap sponsored by Central NH Bicycle Coalition every May – the weekend after Mothers Day. There are also multiple bike shops in Concord (S&W Sports, Trek) and many across the state.

Concord School District is next.

The Friends of the Concord-Lake Sunapee Rail Trail and Central NH Bicycle Coalition are working to bring this learn to ride program to the Concord School District. Like Kearsarge, the Concord School District has 4 elementary schools which can share a fleet of bikes. This keeps the bikes in use during more of the school year. We anticipate this will roll out in Concord in 2024.

As a rail trail organization we strive to provide safe and convenient places to become more comfortable riding a bike. We hope to see many young riders and their families on the trail in the years ahead.

We should stress that at the very beginning of the process we asked the school districts if this was something they were interested in pursuing. We worked closely with the districts in a supporting role to deliver a solution that met their needs. Sincere thanks to the folks in the districts for their time and encouragement.

Action Request for the Exit 9 Project

Approximate boundaries of the Exit 9 Project.
Approximate boundaries of the Exit 9 Project.

We are hoping people will send a polite message to the Warner Selectboard between now and Sept 5th at 6:30 PM when the Selectboard will meet to decide to work with us on a $1.5 million dollar project to build a trail near I-89 Exit 9 and the businesses near there. Click here for the Call to Action You can select either the Warner Resident or Non-resident response. You can edit the text with your own thoughts or just click to send.

Market Days 2023 – June 22, 23, 24

We look forward to seeing you at Market Days in Concord June 22, 23, 24 from 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM. This year our booth is at the corner of Pleasant St and S Main St, right in front of Pitchfork Records.

If you want to join us for a couple of hours sign up for a shift at Its so much fun describing all the projects and progress we have going on.

And we just extended the trail surface in Concord last week with more construction planned for this year in multiple towns.

Public Meeting 2/27/23 at 7:00 PM at Warner Town Hall

The Friends of the Concord-Lake Sunapee Rail Trail were awarded $1.2 million as part of the Federal Appropriations bill that passed Congress at the end of December 2022. The money is to go toward a project involving 2 new bridges and getting from one side of I-89 to the other near Exit 9 in Warner. Thanks are owed to Representative Annie Kuster who put the request into the federal budget.

This project is significant because it aims to create a safe and beautiful way to get from the west side of the interstate to the east side where there are lots of businesses near the roundabout and lots more businesses and destinations in the village of Warner. This project will provide a way to be off of Route 103 using sections of trail and low speed, low traffic side roads to reach the village.

A couple of key points:

  • Despite having a concept plan and most of the funding in place, the project has not yet begun. Its almost at step 1. Come learn about the process and the key moments we need you to show up if this project is going to keep progressing.
  • The matching funds, all $300,000 are being raised by donation, not by taxation.
  • For pictures of the project click here.

Town of Hopkinton Awarded Trail Grant

A very approximate view of how the trail will go from the Kiosk to Kearsarge Ave.

Persistence pays off! Both the Friends of the Concord-Lake Sunapee Rail Trail and the Town of Hopkinton had applied to the NH Bureau of Trails for Recreational Trails Program funding for this project in previous years. In 2022 the Town applied again and this time received the grant. The partnership calls for the town to be supplying the in-kind labor and materials for this project while the Friends of the Concord-Lake Sunapee Rail Trail is providing the cash match of approximately $4,500.

This project creates a safe traffic separated connection from Houston Fields to the new sidewalks along Kearsarge Ave so students at the middle and high school have an easier more direct way to reach the library and playing fields. It also creates a walking loop using Pine St, Kearsarge Ave, and Houston Fields.

The Town of Hopkinton received its official notice to proceed in the second half of June 2023. Construction began mid October of 2023.

NH CDFA Tax Credits

December of 2023 Update: We’ve been granted additional NH-CDFA Tax Credits! These are additional funds for Concord. NH Businesses, please consider supporting the Friends of the Concord-Lake Sunapee Rail Trail using Tax Credits.

Here’s a short video we produced.

December 31, 2022 Update: Our full allocation of Tax Credits has been purchased! Thank you to all the NH businesses that supported us.

The Friends of the Concord-Lake Sunapee Rail Trail is fortunate to have been selected by the New Hampshire Community Development Finance Authority for a Tax Credit award of $200,000 to help construct a 1.25 mile section of trail in Concord.

The portion in orange above is supported by Tax credits.

These tax credits can be used by businesses to pay the New Hampshire Business Profits Tax, The New Hampshire Business Enterprise Tax or the New Hampshire Insurance Premiums Tax. If your business pays any of these taxes to the state of New Hampshire please contact Tim Blagden ( or George Hunton ( or 603-717-9116) at New Hampshire Community Finance Development Authority.

NH CDFA Tax Credits are a way to have more community impact with the very limited funds a business has to invest back into the community. A lot more impact. This is not just another way to make a donation to a worthy cause. They multiply the impact of your dollars and provide you with additional flexibility. They are simple to use. But they are for businesses only. Over 600 unique businesses have used NH CDFA Tax credits since 2016. Many come back again and again once they discover the impact they have.

Our project in Concord will complete the longest single section of trail we’ve built to date. Its a great section of trail taking users from Fisherville Rd (Rt 3 in Concord) to the RiverHill section of the city by the Contoocook River. Riverhill Market, Contoocook Kayak & Canoe, Murray Farms Greenhouse, Friends of Forgotten Children, the River Hill Grange and more are all near the west end of this project.

These businesses have already decided to help us with NH CDFA Tax Credits. We hope you will join them.