SORBA Woodstock in the news!

Here is an article from last weeks Cherokee Tribune about the Taylor Randahl Memorial Trails project going on at Olde Rope Mill Park.

NOTE: I personally corrected the number of users in the article. The article claims Blankets Creek users were 10,000 a year, when it is supposed to by 10,000 a month. Thanks to the Cherokee Tribune for the free press!


Trail blazers
by Kristal Dixon
March 25, 2010 01:00 AM
Bike trails are on their way to Woodstock.

The Southern Off-Road Bicycle Association's Woodstock chapter is actively working to complete the first loop of the Taylor Randahl Memorial bike trails in Olde Rope Mill Park.

The organization entered into a contract with the city of Woodstock to build 5.8 miles of bike trails in the park. City leaders budgeted $150,000 for the project in the city's current budget

The association is working on the first loop of the trail, which is about 1.3 miles, said Jay Wilkes, the association's president.

The organization is planning a work party from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the park. Volunteers are needed to clear the trail for machine work.

Wilkes said he hopes to have the first loop completed before Greenstock Day on May 8, when the trails are scheduled to be dedicated at 10 a.m. at Olde Rope Mill Park.

The planned mountain bike trails are named in memory of Taylor Randahl, a local teenager who was killed in 2000 while biking. A car going the opposite direction struck a deer, which went across the road and struck Taylor.

Wilkes said the first phase of the trail will be used as a "recruitment" tool to see how bike riders like the initiative.

The trails would eventually link to the Blankets Creek mountain bike trails in Sixes, providing connectivity for numerous riders throughout the county.

Mountain bike riding could provide an economic boost to both Woodstock and Cherokee County, Wilkes added.

He said Blankets Creek has about 10,000 users each month and if that many people came to Woodstock, the city would definitely see revenue spent in its hotels, restaurants and shops.

"It's a minimal investment that draws people all over the southeast to ride it," he said.

Woodstock Mayor Donnie Henriques is well aware of the economic capital having bike trails could do for the city.
Henriques has been on the forefront in the effort to get the trails funded and named after Taylor.

"It's been a long time coming," he said. "It's a little bit surreal nine years later."

The mayor has also been leading an effort to make Woodstock an ecotourism location.

The mayor added the day of the dedication will "be a good day for the family" and for the community.