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Trail system to open!

Sarah Harrington

(6/19) After 10 years of work, Emmitsburg will be hosting a Grand Opening of the town’s new trails. This event will take place at the town’s Community Day on June 27th.

Over the 10 years the town has created trails for visitors and residents to use via bike rides, hikes, or walks. 9 years ago the trails were deemed suitable after a feasibility study was conducted. The study was done in conjunction with the town and Mount St. Mary’s University.

Board of Commissioners President, Tim O’Donnell hopes that the trails can ultimately be connected to the town; this would allow residents and visitors to park at the community park and access the trails from there. The current trails are located around Rainbow Lake. O’Donnell wants the trails to be an asset to the town. The trails provide economic benefits as well as provide great leisure spots for residents and visitors.

The town currently has 15 miles of natural surface trails. The trails are used for Mountain biking, hiking, and walks. O’Donnell observes many neighbors and friends out enjoying the trails often.

The town has been working hard to maintain the trails and keep them in shape. The trails weather well which is fortunate for the town because it means that maintenance does not take a lot of time or resources. When the trails do require maintenance, the town is not short on help. The town has 200 volunteer hours already completed. The town has received help with maintaining the trails from local Girl Scout troops as well as people from all over. According to O’Donnell people have traveled from Vermont and Colorado to aid in volunteer hours.

Financially the town has received help from many sources to complete the trail project. The town received a private donation from the Single-track Future Foundation for $3,000. The town has received support from the Mid-Atlantic off Road Enthusiast. This company offered to provide the town with any resources they can.

With the success of the trail project, O’Donnell has received several invitations to speak at other town meetings, such as Brunswick, to share what Emmitsburg has learned from the process. O’Donnell admitted that the project has made Emmitsburg a role model town.

The town is focusing on creating a new family trail. The new trail will be an intro to mountain biking trail. O’Donnell describes the trail as a "Family friendly" trail.

The town will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony for the trails in the morning on June 27th. The ceremony includes giveaways such as T-Shirts and other goodies. O’Donnell is expecting a great turnout.

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