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Big Run Park walking trail to be dedicated May 7
|Messenger photo by Sandi Latimer
Hilltop resident Ann Nichols pauses at one of the six bridges on the south trail at Big Run Park. She plans to participate in the walk being offered by the Olentangy Owls on May 7 as Columbus Recreation and Parks cuts the ribbon for the new trail.
Columbus Recreation and Parks will inaugurate the walking trail at Big Run Park on May 7 in conjunction with the start of the 12th annual Discover Franklin County Summer Walking Series.
The public is invited to attend a 5:30 p.m. ribbon cutting and participate in the walk sponsored by the Olentangy Owls, a local walking club.
The park’s south trail is complete, and work is almost done on the north trail, said Rick Miller, a Recreation and Parks landscape architect.
Both trails begin at the shelter house. The south trail, which has steps and six wooden bridges, is 2,460 feet. The north trail, where gravel is being put down, is 2,600 feet long. The park’s entrance is off of Clime Road.
The trails were constructed with grant money and in-kind work, Miller said. He explained that a former employee who headed up nature trail development saw an opportunity for grants, the need for a trail, and the need to protect plant life. The department was successful in its grant application and received $40,000 last year.
“It was a matching grant, which allowed us to stretch the dollars a little further,” Miller said. “A couple of contractors donated their services.”
Most of the donated work was on the north trail where volunteers carved a path through a wooded area, filled low-lying spots with dirt and put down gravel.
“If it hadn’t been for the donated service, we wouldn’t have gotten the north trail,” Miller said.
Work began on the project nearly a year ago. The completed south trail has been in use, especially in the past few weeks with the warm weather.
Recreation and Parks officials have been working with local walking clubs for a couple of years in an attempt to get more people walking.
The Discover Franklin County Summer Walking Series offers people a structured opportunity to walk in a different community each week from early May to early September.
Through the partnership, the walking clubs have drawn up a couple of incentive programs. “Walk Across Franklin County” encourages participants to record the distances they walk throughout the summer. In another program, walkers who patronize a recreation center in Franklin County will get participation and distance credits toward recognition in September.
Walks have been developed by the Olentangy Owls, Heart of Ohio Hikers and DeFence Walkers. They are planned as follows:
• May 14 and July 23 in Bexley
• May 21 at Gantz Park in Grove City
• May 28 and July 30 in Westerville
• June 4 at the Far East Recreation Center
• June 11 and Aug. 13 in Gahanna
• June 18 in Worthington Hills
• June 25 in German Village
• July 2 in Selby Park in Worthington
• July 9 in Canal Winchester
• July 18 from the Franklin Park Conservatory
• July 19 at Battelle Darby Creek Park
• Aug. 6 in Groveport
• Aug. 20 at Inniswood Metro Park
• Sept. 3 in Upper Arington.
Information about participating in these are available through e-mail at
firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 614-878-4214 or 614-266-5218.
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