Members of the Evarts Tourist and Convention Commission laid plans on Monday to improve their city with coal severance funds received from the county earmarked for adventure tourism.
Commission Clerk Kristi Lamb told members the $10,000 appropriated “must be spent on adventure tourism only.”
After reviewing a list of suggestions on how to spend the funds, the commission approved the purchase of four sheds with concrete pads, eight standard park grills, 14 picnic tables, three bicycle racks and four 10-gallon pole mounted garbage cans all to be placed throughout the city.
“Since July 1, 2012 we have spent $1,804.73 on advertisement for adventure tourism,” said Lamb. “This was strictly adventure tourism, not for our parades or block party. We now have a Trail Town Committee and they’ve been meeting once a month. As a part of being designated as a Trail Town, the city has to be accessible to all areas of adventure tourism such as ATVs and trucks, bicycling, hikers, equestrian and kayaking. With that said, we have to make our town friendly to these tourists. One thing the city lacked was being bicycle friendly. We don’t have any bicycle racks.
“The Black Mountain Off-Road Adventure Park will begin this spring having mountain bike races. We have a minimum of two RV parks in north Evarts and Baileys Creek. We have no garbage cans or shelter houses at our RV parks. These are some of the reasons we need to make the purchases suggested.”
Lamb said state officials have said they want Evarts to be the first Trail Town designated in the state. She said Evarts is a model town in adventure tourism with their off-road park, zip line and already being ATV friendly.
“We need to do these things for our city regardless if we are designated as a Trail Town or not,” said chairperson Janice Napier. “The items we have agreed to purchase will benefit our tourists as well as our citizens in the Clover Fork area.”
At the end of the meeting, members held a moment of silence and special prayer for the King family. The former Evarts mayor and council member Ronnie King was killed on Monday.
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