Traci Berry, trail coordinator for Hot Springs’ Northwoods Trails System, the most exciting mountain biking development in Central Arkansas in years. The multiuse trails designed especially for mountain bikes are the centerpiece of the newly opened Northwoods, 2,000 acres of pristine woodlands a short distance north and west of downtown’s Park Avenue. The park includes three lakes that were built as drinking-water reservoirs: 13-acre Lake Bethel, 24-acre Lake Dillon and 28-acre Lake Sanderson.
Erin Rushing, executive director of NWA Trailblazers, perhaps the state’s leading trail developers, estimates that his group is building 1.5 miles of soft-surface trails on average per week. His nonprofit, which focuses exclusively on Northwest Arkansas, has greatly benefited from the Walton Family Foundation’s dedication to cycling, which is propelling many of the efforts detailed here.
Peggy and Lee Muncy first met in the early 1990s when attending a master’s swim class at the Little Rock Racquet Club. Lee was in training for a Canadian Ironman triathlon, and Peggy simply liked to swim and wanted to get in shape. Romance bloomed, and they wed in October 1992. Of the twelve swimmers in the group, four paired off and got married.
Sheila McDonald is one of those rare individuals for whom no athletic activity presents too steep a challenge. A self-described gym rat and all-around fitness enthusiast, the Pine Bluff native wears well the nickname she picked up some time ago, “Wonder Woman.”
On September 29, cyclists wanting to take on the challenge of riding a bicycle 100 miles will have their chance at Arkansas’s largest cycling tour, the Big Dam Bridge 100 (BDB100). Of the 3000-plus entrants, more than 1000 of them will register for the 100-mile route. As these cyclists roll their bikes to the starting line, they bring with them a variety of goals and expectations for their ride.
Four years ago, the Arkansas Arts Academy hired new CEO Mary Ley, and the first thing she did was add cycling to the curriculum. “Cycling has made positive impacts on the students, staff, school culture and even the arts,” Mrs. Ley says. “And if cycling were a student, I would give it an A+.” Here are a few of the specific areas in which cycling has played a role at the Arkansas Arts Academy.
Adventure is the word you’ll hear in the latest forays into trail building in Arkansas. It’s the word Suzanne Grobmyer, director of the new Arkansas Parks and Recreation Foundation, says describes the foundation’s goal in its work with funders to build biking and hiking routes in state parks.
The 2018 National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) Annual Conference came to Bentonville this summer. It was the largest and most successful conference event in NICA’s history. This benchmark event brought 150 leaders together from 22 states, including California and New York.
Breakaway Cycling was founded as a 501(c)(3) in October 2016 to fill the growing need for junior/young road cyclists across Northwest Arkansas. The vision for the team consisted of creating a positive environment for young cyclists, no matter what level of riding skill they have achieved and no matter their exact goals.
Enduro mountain bike racing has arrived big-time in the Natural State with the 2018 Arkansas Enduro Series! The first race, held May 19-20 in Red Star, Arkansas on the Upper Buffalo Mountain Bike Trail, drew international recognition by qualifying athletes for the Euduro World Series.