Meet the Friends of the Casey Jones State Trail Association
Recently, the friends group played a crucial role in helping to advocate for funding needed to design, engineer, and pave (most) of a five-mile section of the Casey Jones State Trail. This new segment of trail connects an already paved section from Pipestone to the town Woodstock, offering trail users options for day trip bike outings and rest stops.
Of this new five-mile section, three miles are paved, and the final two are a smooth gravel surface. With this shovel-ready segment, the friends group worked on getting a bill passed this year to fund its completion. However, the bonding bill has stalled, and this project remains unfunded. The friends group will continue working hard to advocate for this funding in the future.
To celebrate this new segment, the friends group hopes to host a ribbon cutting ceremony, though the pandemic has altered the original plans. While the timing is yet to be determined, the plan includes an in-person event, inviting local legislators, business owners, community leaders, and supportersâ€”those crucial to the trail’s past and future development. The event will welcome users of the trail to explore this new section!
Amidst the pandemic, the friends group has remained active, meeting virtually a few times. In a partnership with the Southwest Regional Development Commission (SRDC), the group is working on rebranding, marketing, and membership outreach. The goal is to expand their membership base and financial and volunteer support for the trail. A part of the project included creating an updated logo to better showcase what the trail has to offer.