Putnamville's commitment to community involvement and to its partnership with People Pathways can be seen in eastern Putnam County and western Hendricks County via the installation of trail gates and rail fencing along the Vandalia Trail.
The PCF Physical Plant staff built the gates and offender Scott McKinney, of Shelbyville, used his talents to weld gate hinges.
Once construction of the gates was completed, PCF staff members Brian Archer, Charles Sage, Charles Knuf and Mike Riley volunteered their time and labor to install them.
"We combined creativity, skill and hard work on this project," People Pathways coordinator Joy Marley said. "These guys aren't just good, they're really good and we appreciate all that they've done."
In recognition of their contribution to the community, IDOC Commissioner Bruce Lemmon presented Archer, Knuf, Sage and Riley with a token of his appreciation, saying, "It's important that the Department of Correction gives back to the communities in which we live and operate. I'm very proud of your efforts."
There are many projects connected with the four miles designated as Putnam County's portion of the National Road Heritage Trail, among them is fence rail building.
In support of the People Pathway vision, PCF Superintendent Stanley Knight has authorized supervisors Greg Nichols, Bill Fisher, Roger Boillard and their offender work line to assist with the rail fence building project by tapering rails needed for fencing.
Purple, yellow and orange wild flowers, native to Indiana, have welcomed visitors and enhanced the beauty of the trails, thanks to a donation of wildflower seed from the prison's wildflower program.
In addition, PCF staff members have also volunteered numerous man hours clearing debris and trash from the area.
"We consider staff to be our most important asset," Knight commented. "Their dedication and commitment to community is just one of the reasons why."
People Pathways is a non-profit organization that functions under the umbrella of the National Road Heritage Trail Inc. and the Friends of the Parks Association of Putnam County Inc.