ShareThis Page
News

Riders on Rails-to-Trails adventure make stop in Dunbar

| Wednesday, June 24, 2015, 12:16 a.m.
The 14th Annual Rail-Trail Sojourn stopped in Dunbar on Monda, June 22, 2015  and stayed in the borough on Tuesday, June 23, 2015. Starting in Cumberland, Maryland and ending in Coraopolis, the sojourn will continure over a six to seven-day period.  Mary Bernardine Torrez, 14, of Cranberry Township enjoys the fact that on her third trip, the stop in Dunbar is the hometown of one of her teachers in school. Marko Zaninovich, 14, of Bakersfield, California  is on his first ride with his family swith the sojourn.
Lori C. Padila | For Trib Total Media
The 14th Annual Rail-Trail Sojourn stopped in Dunbar on Monda, June 22, 2015 and stayed in the borough on Tuesday, June 23, 2015. Starting in Cumberland, Maryland and ending in Coraopolis, the sojourn will continure over a six to seven-day period. Mary Bernardine Torrez, 14, of Cranberry Township enjoys the fact that on her third trip, the stop in Dunbar is the hometown of one of her teachers in school. Marko Zaninovich, 14, of Bakersfield, California is on his first ride with his family swith the sojourn.

The Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is sponsoring a sojourn across the country.

On Monday and Tuesday, participants stopped in Dunbar.

“We're doing this to have fun. We're doing this to have an experience and we are doing this to make an impression on the communities,” said Tom Sexton, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy of the Northeast Regional director. “We want to help to establish trail towns. We want the people from the communities to see us all and say ‘I get it.'”

Two hundred seventy bicycle enthusiasts from all over the country are taking part in the seven-day ride.

On Sunday, the group stayed in Rockwood. They traveled the 2.1 mile stretch of the Sheepskin trail then camped in Dunbar. They are heading out on Wednesday.

The sojourn will take its riders 192 miles from Cumberland, Md., to Coraopolis.

“We have riders here today from 43 different states,” Sexton said. There are an additional 12 volunteers who come along to help.

Sexton discussed plans for the Sheepskin Trail extension that will one day link the Great Allegheny Passage to the Mon-River Trails system.

“When the 32 miles to Point Marion are completed to link to the Mon-River Trails system it will complete over 500 miles of a continuous trail, and there is nothing like it in the country,” said Sexton.

Many of the riders on the trip have been on previous rides.

Mary Bernardine Torrez is enjoying her third trip.

“It's been a lot of fun,” Torrez of Cranberry said. “We've seen a lot, it's really scenic and everyone so far has been really friendly.”

Marko Zaninovich of Bakersfield, Calif., is on his first trip with the group. He said it will not be his last.

“I have really been enjoying this,” Zaninovich said. “I like the sounds of the birds, the scenery and the tree lines. I recommend this trip highly and I will be back next year.”

Donna Holdorf, Historic National Road Corridor executive director, discussed the importance of the trails for exercise and economics.

Holdorf spoke of how trail users are environmentally conscious and instrumental in promoting better health.

“Trail users are people who care about the land, who are stewards of the environment,” Holdorf said, adding trail usage creates opportunities for towns and municipalities along the way to prosper. “People make choices, and we want them to choose here.”

Those camping in the borough on Tuesday were treated to a historic slide show, a bonfire and an authentic ethnic meal prepared by residents of the community.

“This is the first time that they have stayed here, and it's been amazing,” said Tammy Nedrow, Dunbar Borough secretary. “There isn't very many businesses here in Dunbar but they have all been busy. This group was very supportive of our community and it's been unbelievable.”

Holdorf asked members of the sojourn to contact local and state representatives to encourage more funding for trails and trail town growth.

“Write letters, be voices,” Holdorf said. “Reach out to your congressmen in D.C. and tell them that the transportation department needs to restore funding for trails. Get the word out. We have a lot of coordination that has to happen but we have a good start.”

Marilyn Forbes is a Trib Total Media contributing writer.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me