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The Carthage Press
  • Group upgrades Ruby Jack Trail in Carthage

  • Volunteers with the Joplin Trails Coalition were working on the Ruby Jack Trail between county roads 170 and 180 last Wednesday.
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  • Volunteers with the Joplin Trails Coalition were working on the Ruby Jack Trail between county roads 170 and 180 last Wednesday.
    Braden Horst, president of the coalition, and Jim Gant, president of the Dogwood Trailblazers, are a couple of the volunteers who are improving the trail sections at a time – limited only by funding for the 16-mile trail that goes from Carthage, through Oronogo, Carl Junction, and to the Kansas state line.
    Wednesday morning, Horst and Gant stood along side the shoulder of the trail to watch another $150 truck load of gravel be poured onto the trail.
    “Wish we had more money to do the whole thing,” Horst said. “We're doing these screenings, and it takes $2,300 for a one-mile section. We've wanted to do upgrades for several years.”
    The Joplin Trails Coalition is a non-profit group that maintains walking and biking trails near Joplin, Webb City, Carthage, Oronogo and Carl Junction. The Ruby Jack Trail has been great for hiking, Horst said, but after the new screenings are installed the trail is suitable for strollers and wheelchairs.
    “The trail is a great place for kids to ride their bikes,” Horst said. “The trail is important because it reduces obesity, gets people moving and healthy, is the main reason.”
    The Ruby Jack Trail is one of two projects for the coalition. The other is the Frisco Greenway Trail that runs through Joplin and Webb City. Both of these trails are "Rails To Trails" projects, which means they are former railroads that have been converted to multi-use trails.
    To get involved in the improvement of the local trails, please visit joplin-trails-coalition.webnode.com/ or find the Joplin Trails Coalition on Facebook.

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