Tioga Recreation Trail Fest is fast approaching on Saturday, Aug. 24. It’s a one-day event which will be part fundraiser, inauguration and celebration, according to John Connelly, Grand Rapids and Itasca Bicycling Association (GRIMBA) board member.
“By mid-August, there will be close to 25 miles of new mountain bike trails at Tioga, with something for every ability level,” said Katie Cargill, a local resident helping organize the event. “We feel this is a game changer for our area. To help build on that excitement, we’re planning a fun event to help awareness about this amazing recreational resource. We’re also planning it to help with additional fundraising needs for trail construction and maintenance.”
Currently, there are approximately 20 miles of trails completed.
Trail Fest will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Tioga Beach in Cohasset. According to Connelly, the dynamic and high-energy event will include bike demos, food, music and beer, wine and cider tastings.
“There will also be ride clinics for women and children,” Connelly said. “In addition, local volunteers will lead tours of the new trails to help people become acquainted with the system.”
The City of Cohasset has purchased five mountain bikes for Cohasset city residents to use free of charge.
“As the trails have been constructed last fall and this summer, we’ve been slowly opening them as conditions and weather have allowed,” said Max Peters, Cohasset’s Director of City Operations. “In every regard, these trails have exceeded our expectations, and we’re excited to introduce more people to them. We’re working on temporary signage and maps and hope to have as much of the system open as possible by the event on Aug. 24.”
Peters also explained there is no end date yet.
“Trailhead construction is underway and trail construction will continue into 2020,” Peters said. “We started clearing and site prep [trailhead]. Hoping to be done in 2019, but definitely by grand opening in may 2020.”
Tickets for Tioga Trail Fest are $25 per adult and $10 per child, which include food and beverages. There will also be raffle tickets and auction items available. All funds will go to help meet the $150,000 goal for local donations to the project.
“To date, local donors have contributed approximately $140,000,” Connelly said, adding local donations will be matched two to one by the city of Cohasset up to $300,000.
Tioga Recreation Trail Fest is being organized by partners including the City of Cohasset and the Grand Rapids Itasca Mountain Bicycling Association. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.