FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
July 19, 2017
Patricia Brooks, Patricia@matchmapmedia.com, 202.351.1757
Louisiana’s Tammany Trace Voted 2017 Rail-Trail Hall of Fame Inductee
First rail-trail in Louisiana awarded national honors
New Orleans, La.—Today, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) announced the induction of Louisiana’s Tammany Trace trail (Trace) into its national Rail-Trail Hall of Fame.
The Trace captured the popular vote in a competitive final-round competition of three top-notch trails selected by RTC. The trail joins 30 previous Hall of Fame winners recognized for outstanding scenic value, use, amenities, historical significance and community value.
“The Trace is a five-star trail that attracts more than 300,000 visitors from around the world,” said Keith Laughlin, RTC president. “Clearly, the public showed overwhelming support for their love of this treasured community resource, and we are pleased to honor it as part of the Hall of Fame.”
The Trace spans the St. Tammany Parish, connecting the Northshore communities of Covington, Abita Springs, Mandeville and Lacombe. Key attractions along the trail include the historic H.J. Smith and Sons General Store and Museum, famed Abita Brewpub and Mystery House, cultural Dew Drop Jazz and Social Hall, peaceful Lake Pontchartrain, and the expansive 2,800-acre Fontainebleau State Park and Big Branch Marsh National Wildlife Refuge. While the trail currently ends at the Slidell-Carollo trailhead, plans exist to continue the Trace to downtown Slidell at Heritage Park.
“With a bountiful heritage unique to St. Tammany, the Trace connects the diversity of our community with endless benefits,” says Patricia Brister, St. Tammany Parish president. “The Trace provides a multitude of spots for beautiful views of woods and wetlands, transportation access across the region, wildlife habitat, outdoor recreation, historical preservation, resiliency, sporting events and other community gatherings. We could not be more proud of this award and for the incredible honor of being inducted into the Rail-Trail Hall of Fame.”
The trail is a source of community unity with sporting events such as the Tour de Cure, the Mad Hatter 5k, the Thin Mint Sprint and the Louisiana Bicycle Festival. The Tammany Trace Trailhead on Koop Drive in Mandeville also houses Kids Konnection, an accessible playground that welcomes as many as 103,000 visitors per year, improving inclusivity and access in the region.
As the largest trails organization in America, RTC started recognizing Hall of Fame winners in 2007. The two runner-up trails this year include Colorado’s Rio Grande Trail and Nevada’s Historic Railroad Trail. More information about the Rail-Trail Hall of Fame can be found on RTC's website.
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, a nonprofit organization with more than 160,000 members and supporters, is the nation's largest trails organization dedicated to connecting people and communities by creating a nationwide network of public trails, many from former rail lines. Connect with RTC at railstotrails.org and @railstotrails on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.