Rome observed National Trails Day for the first time Saturday as close to 75 people hiked the Bob and Peggy Moore Trail at the GE Trails at Garrard Park before the thermometer got into the upper 80's. About a third of the people who turned out for the event said it was the first time they had been been on the trails which opened in February 2017.
Harry Brock said he felt like the turnout showed good support for the community's effort to expand the network of trails. He said he passes by the GE Trails a lot and that since the coronavirus pandemic started, use of the trails in West Rome had really picked up.
"This is a very popular spot for people with dogs," Brock said. "You get a lot people out here from Garden Lakes. They walk the lake (Conasauga), but there's no shade and it's just so hot so those folks can come over here and walk in the shade. It gives people some options."
Candice Reeves was among those who made the 1.2 mile loop without any difficulty and then won a hydration backpack as one of the door prizes said she had ridden by the park many times but the walk Saturday was her first time on the trails.
"I loved it," Reeves said. "I've been to Ridge Ferry Park and walked through the neighborhood but this is special being out in nature."
Cody Platt, who oversees the old GE Plant, was out Saturday with his wife and kids who walked their two long-haired chihuahuas. He said he believes the trails on a 60-acre parcel just east of the plant are getting more and more use.
"You see as many people out here with their kids and dogs walking as anything," Platt said.