Our club sponsored a successful local observance of National Trails Day in the Saugatuck-Douglas-Laketown area on Saturday, June 5, 2021. About 75 people participated, not including the 25 volunteers. We believe that we met our goal to inform residents and visitors about local hiking trails.
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The headquarters of the Trail Scramble at the Welcome Center were busy from 9:30 until 4:30. The various sites received 30 to 65 visitors and many people reported visiting trails about which they had not previously known. People were very excited to see the new trail maps that are available at the Welcome Center in Douglas. We even handed out samples of tick & insect repellent wipes that were provided by national event sponsor Ben’s.
We heard lots of favorable comments on the Crows Nest Trail Ale at Guardian Brewing Co. The “Hike More” t-shirt also drew rave reviews; it’s available at Grins of Saugatuck.
More than 30 people who received six or more trail stamps returned to the Welcome Center at 4:00 and most of them received a free hat, courtesy of Landsharks. The final act of the day was to draw names of participants to receive gift certificates from Landsharks, Guardian, and Isabel’s.
We’d like to thank the many collaborators in this event: Tri-Community Trail Master Plan, Saugatuck Douglas (SD) Rotary Club, BSA scout troop 333, SD History Center, SD Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, Friends of the Blue Star Trail, Southwest Michigan Land Conservancy, Laketown Township, Outdoor Discovery Center, Guardian Brewing, Landsharks, Back Alley Pizza, Isabel’s Market & Eatery, Grins of Saugatuck, and Lakeshore Pet Boutique.
National Trails Day was first observed in 1993 and by 2019 there were more than a thousand local observances across all fifty states. The American Hiking Society promotes the event, along with the National Parks Service and other partners. Commercial sponsors include REI, Popular Mechanics, and Athletic Brewing.