PR: Trail Towns Tour

Cyclists riding along Michigan trailsFor Immediate Release:

Old Town Lansing — Travel 30-35 miles back in time on the Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance’s (MTGA) Trail Towns Bicycle Tour in South Lyon, Wixom and Milford on Sunday, September 25, 2016, where physical activity and family fun meet for a day of biking.

Miles of interconnected trails have linked these trail towns for centuries. From footpaths to horses and then wagons to railroads, the trails have changed over the years, and now play host to bicycles. In the Trail Towns of South Lyon, Wixom and Milford, trails are viewed as tremendous community assets showcasing the towns’ placemaking efforts—capitalizing on the community’s history and potential with the intention of creating public spaces promoting health, happiness and well-being.

“There’s been a lot of changes to South Lyon since it was established as a village in 1873,” says Linda Ross, President of the South Lyon Area Historical Society. “It was a simple farming community with three railroads running through it. One of those railroads has been replaced by the Huron Valley Trail, and our town now offers enough for people to shop, travel and get active.”

According to by 1883 the Grand Trunk Railroad, Pere Marquette Railroad and Ann Arbor & Toledo Railroad (AA&T) all ran through South Lyon. In 1908, the original train depot was destroyed in a fire, leaving the nearby grain elevator, which still stands today next to the Huron Valley Trail. AA&T was the first railroad to leave town, after threatening to reroute through Whitmore Lake, which led to aggravated residents uprooting the tracks. Construction of the trail started in 2000, and is included on the Tour, along with the Michigan Airline Railway Trail, Ford Dam, Hubbel Pond and Kensington Metropark’s Kent Lake to Island Lake Pathway.

The Trail Towns Tour serves as a fundraiser for MTGA, with all proceeds going toward the organization’s efforts in advocating and promoting trails, including providing technical assistance to trail groups and communities on their trail projects.

“The best way to help us in our work maintaining and promoting trails, is to join in on one of the most beautiful and enjoyable rides in Michigan—like the Trail Towns Tour and the Michigander,” says Nancy Krupiarz, Executive Director of MTGA.

The planned route is an easy ride—catering to bicyclists of all ages and abilities. On the Tour, riders can experience four different trails, including:

  • Huron Valley Trail
    The 12.5-mile trail follows along the former Airline Railway and connects the Island Lake Pathway and Kensington Metropark Hike-Bike Trail.
  • Island Lake Pathway
    This trail offers 4 miles of smooth asphalt trail connecting the Huron Valley Trail to the Kensington Hike-Bike Trail, passing under Interstate 96 to Kent Lake.
  • Kensington Metropark Hike-Bike Trail
    This 8.5-mile trail encircles Kent Lake and is nicely maintained, with curves and inclines that may require some extra pedal power.
  • Milford Trail
    Completed in 2009, this 5-mile trail travels from Kensington Metropark Hike-Bike Trail to Commerce Road in Milford. At the end of the trail, follow Commerce Road into downtown Milford to visit downtown with its boutiques, shops, bike rentals and restaurants.

South Lyon PumpkinfestNew this year, Trail Towns Tour will take place during the annual South Lyon Pumpkinfest, which draws over 50,000 festival goers over the three day festival and features a midway, South Lyon Farmers Market, inflatables, Operation Injured Soldiers & War Dog Memorial, Pumpkinfest Parade, scarecrow contest and Ultimate Air Dogs.


Mary McGuire Slevin