January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 14

WE ARE PARKS AND RECREATION
Boost Your Local Economy With Trails
By Andy Bohannon, CPRP, AFO
T
he City of Keene is nestled into the southwest corner of New
Hampshire. Some might think we are a sleepy college town, but
we are the vibrant economic pulse of Cheshire County with a
population of 23,000, which grows to 60,000 during the day. The
city has a long history of rail trails and mountain biking. Yet, while the
mountain biking community had kept the local trails a secret until the past
decade, now it has grown into a destination for every ability.
In 2019, the New England Mountain
Bike Association - Brattleboro/
Keene (NEMBA-BK) approached
the city to build a one-acre mountain
bike park. An original donation of
$25,000 quickly became a $115,000
donation and two acres. As the park
was being built, the opportunity to
create a new, unique park quickly
sparked a vision fueled by a community
passion. Shortly after the ribbon
cutting, the bike park became a destination.
As use increased, we began
to notice more out-of-state vehicles
bringing riders of all ages. A friend
shared a story with me about an experience
he had with his two boys:
they had been riding on an early
Sunday morning to avoid the crowd,
and he wanted to get a coffee. As
they left the park, his kids brought
him a different way, and he learned
of trails he didn't know about and
found a much more direct route that
led him to a park with a Starbucks in
the parking lot. This story triggered
a light-bulb moment. If residents
didn't know where they were, how
would visitors?
Community Collaboration
From the bike park grew a vision
of stronger collaboration, promotion,
wayfinding
and
economic
development. Collaborations with
multiple partners, including Pathways
for Keene, a nonprofit whose
sole mission is to raise money for
the Keene rail trails, have been supporting
this vision. In more than 20
years, the group has raised more
than $700,000 to improve various
rail-trails
sections,
including
the
The construction of a bike park
spurred a vision of stronger
collaboration, promotion, wayfinding
and economic development in Keene,
New Hampshire.
14 Parks & Recreation |
J ANUAR Y 2 0 2 4 | PARK S ANDRECRE AT ION . OR G
North Bridge, which allowed the
city to connect the east and west
sides over a state highway. Their
annual 4 on the 4th Road Race
raises nearly $35,000, which has
been used as seed money for large
grants to improve the eight miles
of rail trail, and they are currently
spearheading the fundraising effort
for the city's Transportation Heritage
Trail, which will connect three
unique bridge spans, all of which
have had an important engineering
impact in bridge construction.
Collaborations can create a strong
sense of community. They require a
shared vision among all the members
involved in the project. When
bringing new members to join the
effort, there needs to be respect. It
takes constant communication to
make all the pieces of the vision
move forward. However, when you
have a vision and you share the direction
you are looking to go, often
the funding will begin to flow, and
the project can be launched successfully.
It's constant work, and the
more organizations at the table, the
higher the risk of losing project momentum.
But when you can keep
everyone aligned, you can achieve
PHOTO COURTESY OF NELSON BROWN

January 2024 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of January 2024 - Parks & Recreation

January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - Intro
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - Cover1
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - Cover2
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 1
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 2
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 3
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 4
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 5
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 6
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 7
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 8
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 9
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 10
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 11
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 12
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 13
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 14
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 15
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 16
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 17
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 18
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 19
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 20
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 21
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 22
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 23
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 24
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 25
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 26
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 27
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 28
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 29
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 30
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 31
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 32
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 33
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 34
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 35
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 36
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 37
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 38
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 39
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 40
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 41
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 42
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 43
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 44
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 45
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 46
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 47
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 48
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 49
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 50
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 51
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 52
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 53
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 54
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 55
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - 56
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - Cover3
January 2024 - Parks & Recreation - Cover4
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2024
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2024
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2024
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2024
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2021
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