Central Kansas Partnership awards $500 to Central Baptist Church, in Great Bend to support their bicycle campground, that is available to cross-country cyclists. The money is specifically designated to assist with signage and the repair picnic tables at their overnight bicycle campsite, located near Harrison and 12th Street.
In 2019, the TransAmerica Trail was rerouted through Great Bend. Great Bend is an ideal stop for cyclists because we host a variety of fast-food restaurants, which are a huge hit for people looking for cheap eats, and we also have Golden Belt Bicycle Company, a full-service repair and supply store. These amenities are not widely available for hundreds of miles along the trail in western Kansas, making us an ideal community for people to stock-up at, both before and after the stretch.
The reroute is anticipated to funnel hundreds of cyclists through Barton County throughout the year. This corridor is part of a larger, more extensive trail infrastructure that spans from Astoria, OR to Yorktown, VA, over 4,215 miles. The TransAmerica portion of the trail is 326 miles and extends from central Colorado to the coast of Virginia.
There are many camping choices across the country for cyclists, and the Partnership is proud to support this local effort and the progressive mindset of the Central Baptist Church.
Avid riders, John and Donna Krug, have visited several bicycle campsites across Kansas. They reported other locations having dozens of people passing through on the designated TransAmerica Trail, in a single week. There is always an uptick in cyclists from May through September.
The Central Baptist Church campsite is only available to transient riders. They also have a bicycle fix station with tools for self-repairs that are accessible not only for cross-country enthusiasts, but also to our local residents.
Many long-distance riders are familiar with a phone application, called Warm Showers. The Warm Showers Community is a free worldwide hospitality exchange for touring cyclists.
People who are willing to host touring cyclists sign up and provide their contact information to the app and can be reached for the use of a shower, share in a great story, or as a resource to learn about the community. Go to www.warmshowers.org to be a host, or to become a member and stay with a host.
Central Kansas Partnership has been building a vibrant culture of programs and grassroots efforts that promote health, wellness, and rural community prosperity since 2012. The coalition is composed of several task forces, including Suicide Prevention, Be Well Barton County, Drug and Alcohol Prevention, and many more. For more information and to join us for a meeting, please visit www.ckpartnership.org.