Wow. For us here at Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC), and everyone who works hard to build trail systems, there are few better feelings than seeing a group of people having a great time on their local trail, beaming smiles and loving life.
And so it was wonderful to see our efforts on the Metropolitan Branch Trail (MBT) in Washington D.C. over the past five years bloom into an energetic and supportive trail community. Our MBT program coordinator Pat Fisher and her crew of helpers have shown local residents that the trail is all about having a good time, getting the blood pumping, hanging out with old friends and making new ones.
And as you can see from these photos taken at the MBT Community Veterans 5k Walk/Run for Fun event on Saturday, people of all ages, sizes, colors and shapes are responding to that message! (View a slideshow.)
D.C. Prep Physical Education teacher, Dan Kipperman, and local Zumba instructor LaShawn Scott-Boone helped make Saturday's event on the MBT a real party, with dance music, high fives and shouts of encouragement the order of the day.
But, as Fisher knows, to attract an even bigger community of trail-users and supporters, the trail must remain a safe and convenient facility for locals. Fisher and the Edgewood Community Travel Safety Planning Committee will to continue to work with RTC and local transportation and neighborhood planners on providing safe intersections near and around the MBT, and advocating for trail safety efforts that involve the whole community.
To learn more about RTC's work on fostering a trail community around the MBT and other urban trails, visit www.railstotrails.org/urbanpathways