The Simon Kenton Pathfinders (SKP) will participate in the national Rails to Trails event “Celebrate Trails Day” on Saturday, April 24, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The event will be held at the Urbana Depot on Miami Street, the trail head of the Simon Kenton Trail.
Celebrate Trails Day was created by the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) to promote local multi-use recreational trails. The Simon Kenton Pathfinders, an all-volunteer local nonprofit, built, maintains and promotes the Simon Kenton Trail in Champaign and Logan counties.
The RTC has helped local communities throughout the nation build and connect over 2,400 miles of rail-trails with another 8,000 miles currently in planning stages or under construction. Southwest Ohio has the largest amount of dedicated and paved trails in the country with nearly 400 miles of interconnected trails and more in the works.
Built in phases since 2003, the Simon Kenton Trail connects with the Little Miami Trail in downtown Springfield to the south and extends north to Bellefontaine. In addition, there is a spur to the Champaign Family YMCA in Urbana.
The mission of the SKP is to provide a safe place to cycle, run and walk while promoting healthy lifestyles.
Thanks to the Mary Rutan Hospital and Foundation, SKP will give free bicycle helmets to children accompanied by an adult at Saturday’s event. These will be on a first-come basis and are sized for elementary-junior high age.
All are welcome to the event, where they can learn about the trail and get maps, membership materials and helmets for their children and grandchildren. The event will be held rain or shine. The Pathfinders will be at the white tent in the Depot parking lot or, in case of rain, under the porch on the west side of the building.