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Spearhead Trails’ Mountain View System to Officially Open with Ribbon Cutting Celebration

The Southwest Regional Recreation Authority (SRRA), also known as Spearhead Trails, will commemorate the opening of its first multi-use trail system with a ribbon cutting ceremony at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, August 16th. The 70+ mile Mountain View system is located in the counties of Dickenson, Russell, and Wise with the trailhead located in the Town of St. Paul. The ribbon cutting will take place at the Mountain View trailhead, located off of Third Avenue, just a few blocks from downtown. Regional legislators, county officials, entrepreneurs, and the public are invited to attend.

SRRA was formed by the Virginia General Assembly in 2008 and, since that time, has grown from a volunteer organization to a revenue generating initiative with a full-time staff. Spearhead Trails sells its annual rider permits though “Partner Retailers” who offer fuel, gas, food, and other related ATV/OHV supplies. “In the first three weeks of operation,” said Chuck Riedhammer, Executive Director of SRRA, “local partner retailers have sold over 370 rider permits.” “Now we’re seeing regional businesses bringing on ATV/OHV accessories like helmets, tires, gloves, and upgrading their camping and outdoor recreation supplies. One entrepreneur in the utility trailer business is now offering “toy haulers” to capitalize on the increased adventure tourism traffic.” SRRA plans to open more systems in the counties of Buchanan, Dickenson, Lee, Russell, Scott, and Tazewell within the next two to three years. The Scott County trails will be equestrian focused and the rest will be ATV/OHV centric, with the exception of Lee County where a “braided” OHV/Equestrian trail is planned.

The mission of the Southwest Regional Recreation Authority is to stimulate, enhance, and sustain economic development and job creation through entrepreneurial opportunities. “Our trail systems will not only generate direct revenue for the region, we will spark a flurry of new business opportunities, increase sales tax and visitor spending, and generate local economic impact,” says Charlotte Mullins, Chair of the SRRA Board. “Visitors will travel here to stay longer and spend more money on things like food, lodging, gas, and retail products. In addition, there will be new, profitable opportunities for adventure tourism entrepreneurs and outfitters. Make no mistake; while government is an investor, this is very much a business.” Spearhead Trails’ revenues will come in the form of sponsorships, trail permit fees, and merchandise sales.

The Spearhead Trails effort was initially facilitated by the Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) at the request of regional localities eager to capitalize on this growing revenue stream. SRRA continues to receive development and marketing assistance from the VTC. SRRA received its initial funding from the Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission chaired by Virginia Delegate Terry Kilgore. “The Spearhead Trails initiative offered a vast opportunity to showcase our area and a great trail system. It is our hope that this system will continue to grow and benefit the region,” says Kilgore. SRRA has gone on to secure investments from other entities including the Motorcycle Industry Council, the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, and the Appalachian Regional Commission. Most recently, SRRA received trail development funding from the Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority, which expedited the opening of the Mountain View system and will provide funding for a new ATV/OHV system in Buchanan and Dickenson counties. SRRA also receives support from the counties of Buchanan, Dickenson, Lee, Russell, Scott, Tazewell, and Wise, and the city of Norton.

For more information on Spearhead Trails, please visit www.SpearheadTrails.com or LIKE our Facebook page, SpearheadTrails. An invitation flyer and map showing the location of the ribbon cutting event is attached with this release.

Spearhead_Mountain_View_Ribbon_Cutting_ReleaseFlyerMap1 (PDF)