The Estill Action Group had our monthly meeting on Wednesday, June 3rd at the Estill County Extension Office. The meeting started out with announcements about upcoming Actioneer Adventures.
The Speedy Spore River Run, the 6 mile & 12 mile kayak and canoe race, will be on Saturday, June 20th under the Irvine Bridge. Registration begins at 1pm. If anyone has questions about the race, please send us an email!
We are also planning an Actioneer Adventure for Saturday, June 27th at the Lily Mountain Nature Preserve. We will meet at Real McCoy's Antique & Vendor Mall (Reges Road) and caravan to LMNP. This will be a guided hike up to an overlook. Justin Rogers, who works with Lily Mountain, will be guiding the hike. He said to expect a moderately difficult hike that will take 45 minutes to 1 hour to climb up to the overlook. Hikers are encouraged to bring a snack or light meal and we will eat at the top! We are very excited to check out this little gem in Estill County.
The announcement was made that the Estill County Farmers' Market is now open on Tuesday and Saturday mornings from 9am-1pm. Tuesday location is at the Fairground Pavillion and Saturday location is at the Veteran's Memorial Park in Ravenna. Estill Action Group will be at the Market on Saturdays with the Estill County "Home" T-shirts for sale. Kids activities & entertainment are being planned throughout the season. Ideas and involvement are welcome! Email Hannah Eaton: firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like to be involved with the Farmer's Market!
After announcements, we moved on to the main topic of the night: the Kentucky Trail Towns Project. What's the Trail Towns Project you ask? Here is a good little description from the 'Kentucky Trail Town How-To-Guide for Communities':
"A Trail Town is a destination along a long-distance trail or adjacent to an extensive trail system. Whether the trail is a hiking trail, water trail or rail trail, users can venture from the path to explore the unique scenery, commerce and heritage that each trail town has to offer. It is a safe place where both residents of the town and trail users can walk or drive to find the goods and services they need. A Trail Town is a vibrant hub where people come together. It may have a bike shop, ice cream parlor, casual restaurants, a grocery store and quaint local shops. It should also have wide sidewalks, clean streets, bike racks, hitching posts, watering facilities and restrooms, benches and places to rest for the night. It should generously meet the needs of both trail users and town residents. A Trail Town is a friendly place that encourages trail users to visit and welcomes them with warm hospitality."
The Estill Action Group has taken the lead on this project but in order for this project to become reality, we need involvement from the community! The Kentucky Trail Town Workbook that was put together by the Office of Adventure Tourism is an excellent guide, that explains the process very thoroughly and is very straightforward. The workbook lays out the organzational chart for Trail Town Task Forces, which is broken down into 5 different committees: the Trail Route Advisory Committee, Merchant Committee, Volunteer Committee, Signage Committee, and the Funding/Education/PR Committee.
At our meeting Wednesday night, each of the 5 committees were explained and brainstorming of people to serve on the committees ensued. Here's a little description of each committee & the designated chairpersons:
The Trail Route Advisory Committee is responsible for connecting the existing trails & trails systems into Town; Chairperson: Steve Walters
The Merchant Committee is responsible for providing resources that businesses need to tap into the trail based economy (souvenirs, KY Proud, KY Arts & Crafts); Co-chairpersons: Francie Snowden & Tonya Noll
The Volunteer Committee is responsible with establishing a community volunteer base for trail maintenance; Co-chairpersons: Chelsea Bicknell & Hannah Eaton
The Signage Committee is responsible for developing signage to get people around in town and to the trails; Co-chairpersons: Josh Rogers & Nivra Lainhart
The Funding/Education/PR Committee is responsible for serving all the other committees, submitting for grants, assisting with locating needed equipment, labor, education, events, public awareness, etc.;
Chairperson: Travis Wickline
The goal is for each committee chairperson to recruit 5-10 people to their committee, then at our monthly meeting on July 1st, we will break into the committee groups to begin the process.
This Trail Towns Project is a great way to showcase our community, our hills & hollers & all of the wonderful things Estill County has to offer. If you have interest in joining us on this process, please email us or send us a message on Facebook! We are excited to get started!
Have a great month of June, folks! Don't forget to get out & #ExploreEstill!!!!