From Parkhurst to Darling Field, Explore Using the FJ&G Rail Trail; New Spur Planned to Take Travelers to the Downtown Core
Take a calming journey through the City of Gloversville by using the FJ&G Rail Trail and visit the region’s history by stopping at Parkhurst Field, Trail Station Park, and Darling Field. The estimated 3-miles of the City of Gloversville’s portion of the trail (total of 9 through both the cities of Johnstown and Gloversville and another 2 near Broadalbin) will take travelers through some beautiful nature scenes, including glimpses of deer and ducks.
FJ&G Rail Trail’s creation story begins in the mid-1990s as Fulton
County began converting the unused tracks once owned by the Fonda, Johnstown & Gloversville (FJ&G) Railroad to a scenic recreation area. The thoroughfare brought vacationers to the foothills of the Adirondacks, made stops for baseball games in Gloversville, and picked up and dropped off freight for the local tanneries. Eventually, the rail line closed in the 1980s and the ideas began to revitalize the path for tourism. Since the conversion to a recreational pathway, walkers, hikers, bicyclists, rollerbladers and cross-country skiers have enjoyed time outside, utilizing the trail from parking lots located at Trail Station Park on West Fulton Street and off Harrison Street, near the baseball ball fields.
On their travels, they could catch a baseball game at Parkhurst Field and learn the history of baseball greats such as Cy Young playing in Gloversville. The park was home to exhibition games that featured teams such as the Brooklyn Royal Giants and it has always been in use since the Gloversville Little League began to play on the grounds in 1955 and continues to do so to this day.
At the other end of Gloversville, near the rail trail, lies Darling Field, once owned by the local school district. The front entrance off Kingsboro Avenue has recently had some upgrades with beautiful gardens leading to the archway entrance. Passing by the back fields when on the trail, travelers can either come off the trail and watch soccer games or stop and play a pickup game of tennis or basketball at the nearby courts. The first two courts could also be used for pickleball, one of the fastest growing sports in America.
The stop at Trail Station Park now includes a splash pad that has been a great hit with the
youth of the area. The pad was the first phase of the expansion of Trail Station Park with funding through a $365,000 grant from the Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation (OPRHP). The expansion nearly doubled the size of the park with amenities and landscaping over a large area that was formerly a parking lot. The next phase of the project, funded through the $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative grant (DRI), will include a new 80’ x 20’ building to house restrooms, a kitchen area, and a large indoor space for special events.
Soon Trail Station Park will also be home to a new offshoot path from the FJ&G Rail Trail Gloversville’s Downton Corridor so travelers can explore the city’s core, do some shopping, and grab a bite to eat during their journey. Also funded through the DRI, $441,000 will be dedicated to creating a more welcoming environment for visitors and residents by providing improved sidewalks, street trees for shade and pedestrian lighting at key locations downtown. Church Street, which is a key connector for the FJ&G Rail Trail to Downtown Corridor, will receive improvements, including a two-way bicycle track on the southside.
Work on this path has already begun. When the splash pad was erected, the short-arched footbridge that crossed Cayadutta Creek at Trail Station Park was replaced with a longer, flatter bridge that could accommodate bicycle traffic.
Gloversville is the perfect small city for traversing, Find the hidden gems in Downtown Gloversville when using this trail.
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