Fundraising campaign planned for finish Tweetsie Trail
Published 9:35 am Friday, March 27, 2015
Members of the Tweetsie Trail Task Force are ready to move forward to complete the Tweetsie Trail and soon may be asking for the public’s assistance finishing the project.
A fundraising plan to collect about $30,000 to finish the walking and biking path from Holly Lane across from Pal’s to where the trail will end behind Snap-On Tools on Stateline Road. The first phase of the trail starting in Johnson City was dedicated on Labor Day 2014.
Construction on the trail progressed faster than the plans originally called for, and now the 10-mile trail is expected to be completed in two phases instead of three. The original plans broke the trail down into three parts: from Johnson City to Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park, from the park to downtown Elizabethton and from there to the end of the trail at Snap-On.
“We have around 2.7 miles left to finish,” Task Force Chairman Dan Schumaier said. “We are getting ready to kick this off and finish the trail.”
An estimated $30,000 is needed to finish out the rest of the trail, Schumaier said. A goal completion date for the final portion has been set for Labor Day.
“We could have this trail completed in a two-year time frame,” Schumaier said.
The fundraising plan, which is still under development, will include different ways for the public to help finish out the last portion of the Tweetsie Trail. Some possible ideas are selling trees to be placed along the trail with the name of the donor placed nearby. Benches could also be sold as well as direct contributions being collected from the public.
“We are still determining how we want to move ahead with the fundraising plan,” Schumaier said. “It will need to be presented to the Task Force for their approval.”
Task force members have spoken with business owners along the trail and all details have been sorted out, Schumaier said. “We have addressed this with the business owners and there are no problems,” he said. “We are ready to move ahead with this.”
Task Force member Bill Carter is also a business owner in downtown Elizabethton. Having the trail completed through the downtown will be a positive for businesses, Carter said.
“It will bring more traffic through downtown and it will expose our businesses to more visitors,” Carter said. “They will be out walking on the trail and they will look over and see our businesses. Exposure is key. I think a lot of citizens and businesses would love to see the trail finished.”
Finishing the trail is exactly what the Task Force is setting out to do.
“We look forward to completing the Tweetsie Trail in Elizabethton,” Schumaier said.
Donations can be made online at www.tweetsietrail.com or by mail to: Attn: Janet Jennings, Tweetsie Trail Fund–COJC P.O. Box 2150, Johnson City, Tenn. 37605-2150. Make checks payable to the Tweetsie Trail Fund–COJC.