Nov. 14, 2012 — Olive Hill’s efforts to become a certified Kentucky Trail Town took a big step forward on Friday when Gov. Steve Beshear announced a $25,000 grant for trail improvements along Tygart’s Creek downtown.
“This is wonderful news and we are very pleased to receive the grant on behalf of the hard working citizens on the Trail Town Task Force who are leading the effort to expand tourism in our community,” said Mayor Danny Sparks.
The grant is among 21 totaling $1.13 million in recreational trail program funding for developing and maintaining trails throughout Kentucky.
The Olive Hill grant will be used to improve an existing trail along the creek and to construct a trailhead restroom facility, according to Kim King, community development coordinator, who wrote the grant application.
“We have been expecting an announcement for a few weeks,” King said. “We are glad to have the funds and now can move forward with detailed planning.”
King added that the grant has to be matched but that the committee believes it can do so with in-kind donations of labor, materials and equipment.
Work is expected to begin next spring.
Debbie Baker Harman, a leader of the task force, said additional funding is being sought for landscaping and other improvements on trails along the creek.
“We believe this first grant will open the doors to other support for further development of the trailhead area,” she stated. “We also envision beautiful trails with campsites and other features.”
Nici Raybourn, Bob Coleman, Sen. Robin Webb and others also have been heavily involved in the Trail Town initiative since earlier this year.
Olive Hill already has hosted two successful heritage trail rides and the City Council decided not to sell the former airport so that the property could be used to support trail activities.
Recreational trail funds come from the Federal Highway Administration and are administered in Kentucky by the Department for Local Government.