The year has seen the Highlands Trail Foundation extend warm welcomes to a new board member and extend fond farewells to dear departing friends. The board of directors is now 14 members strong. Our new director is Sarah Forbes of Montrose.
HTF reluctantly accepted the resignation of Emily Whitaker from the board. Emily has decided to leave the green hills of West Virginia for the bluegrass of Kentucky. We wish to thank her for her dedicated service thru the years and wish her well in all her future endeavors.
The HTF will host four events in 2017. The 3rd annual Ramps & Rail + Trail Ride, rechristened the Rail trail ramble for 2017, will be held in conjunction with the Ramps & Rail Festival in Elkins April 29. Riders will not only enjoy a guided trip on the Allegheny Highlands Trail but also return in time to experience ramp delicacies and crafts at the festival in the Town Square. Montrose is the location of the 7th annual Allegheny Highlands Trail Bluegrass Festival. The event, tentatively scheduled for July 22, will feature the best of West Virginia’s bluegrass and a pulled pork BBQ meal at the community park.
We are very excited to continue a new event on the AHT in August as we will welcome back runners to the second annual Allegheny Highlands Trail 20 Miler. The event will begin at Gilman with the finish in Parsons with a starting time of. The ever-popular Blackwater Canyon Bike Ride will be held in conjunction with Tucker County’s Leaf Peepers Festival Sept. 23. This guided ride down the beautiful Blackwater Canyon begins in Thomas and ends with a picnic provided by the City of Parsons at Mill Race Park.
The Highlands Trail Foundation is grateful for the support of the many sponsors that make these events possible. We hope you can participate in some, if not all, of these excellent events. For more information, registration and ticketing, visit www.highlandstrail.org/events.
Many friends and supporters have inquired about route selection for the Elkins Rail-Trail Connector project which will complete the AHT from Highland Park to the Elkins Depot. The West Virginia Division of Highways has approved the one-bridge route and constructions hould begin this summer! The bridge will cross US 219 north of the Railroad Avenue intersection. Design will accommodate possible addition of a second bridge by another entity at a later date should funds become available. With the trail completed to downtown Elkins, efforts can now be turned towards extending the trail along the Blackwater Canyon.
Membership and participation in events support the HTF’s ongoing work to provide quality recreational trail opportunities in the Potomac Highlands of West Virginia. Your 2016 membership is now expired. We sincerely hope that you will renew it for 2017. Renewals may be made by check mailed to the above address or by credit card at www.highlandstrail.org/support/membership.
Thank you for your continued membership and support of the Highlands Trail Foundation,