Columbia-Adair County’s first step to become a Trail Town as part of the Kentucky Trail Town Initiative through the Kentucky Office of Adventure Tourism in the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet is here. The trial run will take place this Saturday, May 16 for up to 50 kayaks and canoes on Russell Creek as we begin the Adair Paddle Trail.
Pre-registration is closed but you can still be part of this exciting trial run through late registration at the historic Adair County courthouse this Saturday, May 16 at 8:00 a.m. Each pre-registered participant will receive the official Paddle Adair Trial Run T-shirt, boat decal, marine whistle and will be entered in the drawing for an Old Town Vapor kayak, paddle, life vest and a dry box.
Late registration participants will be entered in the drawing but will be on a first come first serve basis for the T-shirt, decal and whistle. The Coast Guard will also be on hand at the put in to register your kayak or canoe. We will be shuttling paddlers and their boats from the take out back to the put in. If you don’t kayak but still want to be part of this event, no problem…we need volunteers. Just show up at the courthouse that morning.
The trial run trail has to be a designated trail for that activity only and begin or end within the city limits. The creek is our only trail that meets the criteria. Once we finish our trial run and all the necessary assessments, then we (Columbia-Adair County) will be eligible for certification as a Kentucky Trail Town and will begin to map and develop other unique trails that our town and county offer such as hiking, biking, horse back riding and off road riding.
Trail Town is a national program that works through each state to help small communities develop and take advantage of adventure tourism opportunities in their area through a designation and assistance program that will help these communities connect the dots for travelers and guide them to trails, food, lodging, campgrounds, museums, entertainment and other services that will aid business for small communities and add more tourism opportunities for the state.
Each Trail Town decides what approaches it wants to take to tie into existing trail systems and other services that trail users need. It provides an opportunity for Trail Town communities to work together and share ideas while at the same time developing their downtowns and Main Streets for increased tourism dollars.
The Office of Adventure Tourism will provide guidance to these communities on issues such as trail development and signage, and how other communities have been successful by linking trails and services.
Once a community receives the Trail Town certification, the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, the Department of Travel and Tourism and Office of Adventure Tourism will help promote and market these communities and the services being offered. They will be highlighted on maps, websites, visitor’s guides and other state promotional material.
Our surrounding counties are also taking advantage of the Trail Town initiative to boost their tourism and community well being as well.