Ceremonial Bike Ride and Event to Mark Induction of Central Iowa’s Raccoon River Valley Trail to National Rail-Trail Hall of Fame

September 30, 2021

On September 30, 2021, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC), the nation’s largest trails organization, will welcome the newest member of its prestigious Rail-Trail Hall of Fame—central Iowa’s Raccoon River Valley Trail.

The media is invited to join the festivities, kicking off with a ceremonial 19-mile bike ride that includes members of RTC’s Trailblazer Society and the Raccoon River Valley Trail Association. The ride will begin at the trailhead in Waukee and conclude with the induction ceremony at the trailhead in Perry, featuring elected officials and regional leaders credited with the trail’s development.

The Raccoon River Valley Trail is a vital tourist engine for central Iowa, embraced by the region and state as an asset for health, wellness and connection. This 89-mile path connects rural communities to larger cities including Jefferson, Des Moines and Perry, and progress is being made on efforts to connect the hall-of-fame trail to the renowned High Trestle Trail. The trail is also an important segment of the developing cross-country Great American Rail-Trail™, a flagship project of RTC that will connect Washington, D.C., and Washington State across 3,700 miles of pathway.

On September 30, 2021, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC), the nation’s largest trails organization, will welcome the newest member of its prestigious Rail-Trail Hall of Fame—central Iowa’s Raccoon River Valley Trail.

The media is invited to join the festivities, kicking off with a ceremonial 19-mile bike ride that includes members of RTC’s Trailblazer Society and the Raccoon River Valley Trail Association. The ride will begin at the trailhead in Waukee and conclude with the induction ceremony at the trailhead in Perry, featuring elected officials and regional leaders credited with the trail’s development.

The Raccoon River Valley Trail is a vital tourist engine for central Iowa, embraced by the region and state as an asset for health, wellness and connection. This 89-mile path connects rural communities to larger cities including Jefferson, Des Moines and Perry, and progress is being made on efforts to connect the hall-of-fame trail to the renowned High Trestle Trail. The trail is also an important segment of the developing cross-country Great American Rail-Trail™, a flagship project of RTC that will connect Washington, D.C., and Washington State across 3,700 miles of pathway.

WHAT: Raccoon River Valley Trail Hall of Fame bike ride and induction ceremony

WHEN: September 30, 2021

9:00 a.m.: Celebration kickoff and ride begins at the trailhead in Waukee, Iowa

10:45 a.m. (approximate): Hall of Fame induction ceremony immediately follows

ride at the trailhead in Perry, Iowa

11:30 a.m.: Lunch and networking

WHERE: Iowa’s Raccoon River Valley Trail Waukee Trailhead (north side of north side of Hickman Road near 10th St.) and Perry Trailhead/Caboose Park (at the intersection of First Avenue (Highway 144) and Willis Avenue)

WHO: Induction ceremony speakers include:

  • Sandy Lowe, chair, Raccoon River Valley Trail Association
  • Ryan Chao, president, RTC
  • Mark Ackelson, president emeritus, Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation
  • Mike Wallace, executive director, Dallas County Conservation Board
  • Other elected officials invited
  • Moderated by: Chuck Offenburger, former columnist, Des Moines Register

Media interested in attending or setting up interviews should contact Patricia Brooks at patricia@matchmapmedia.com.

All event activities will be hosted outdoors and masks are encouraged, and will follow local public health guidelines and guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The Raccoon River Valley Trail was among three trails nominated for the 2021 recognition and voted on by the public between Jul. 30 and Aug. 6, 2021, securing nearly 43% of the vote, earning the status of RTC’s 35th inductee in the Rail-Trail Hall of Fame. RTC’s Rail-Trail Hall of Fame recognizes trails from across the country for outstanding scenic value, use, amenities, historical significance and community value. More information about the Raccoon River Valley Trail  and the Rail-Trail Hall of Fame can be found on RTC’s website.

Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is the nation’s largest trails organization—with a grassroots community more than 1 million strong—dedicated to building a nation connected by trails, reimagining public spaces to create safe ways for everyone to walk, bike and be active outdoors. Connect with RTC at railstotrails.org and @railstotrails on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

CONTACT: Patricia Brooks, patricia@matchmapmedia.com, 202.351.1757

RACCOON RIVER VALLEY TRAIL ANNUAL BANQUET

February 26, 2022

The annual Raccoon River Valley Trail Association (RRVTA) banquet is back after a year off due to the pandemic. It will be held Saturday, February 26, 2022 at Country Lane Lodge, 29300 Prospect Circle in Adel.  Cocktails, exhibits, and auction items will be available in the late afternoon with a full banquet meal, featured speaker, and fundraising auction to follow.  The banquet is the biggest annual fundraiser for the RRVTA, the non-profit organization that markets and promotes the 89-mile trail in west central Iowa. More information will be available soon, but please mark your calendars now.

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