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19th National Trails Symposium in Little Rock, Arkansas, November 15-18, 2008

Lifetime Service | Best Trails State | Community Service | Developer Award | Hulet Hornbeck Award | Trails for Health | Partnership | Trails Public Service | Outstanding Media | Trails and the Arts | Planning/Design | Corporate | State-of-the-Art Technology | Trail Sharing | Trail Advocate Awards | Trail Worker Awards | Awards Index


For a state which is facilitating an outstanding statewide system of trails. The nomination should address any aspects that have led to the establishment of the statewide trails network including master planning, legislation, funding, and program implementation. The nomination should also include specific projects, plans, policies and/or initiatives that have furthered establishment and expansion of the trails network during the past two years:

Florida Office of Greenways and Trails

Florida best trails state

Under the leadership of the Florida Office of Greenways and Trails (OGT), Florida is facilitating the establishment of an outstanding statewide system of trails through a multi-faceted approach reaching throughout the Sunshine State. In 1999 the Florida Legislature officially adopted the Statewide Plan for Greenways and Trails, laying the groundwork for the statewide system of greenways and trails.

State Management and Acquisition of Trails

OGT manages more than 80,000 acres as part of Florida's greenways and trails system, including the 110-mile Carr Cross Florida Greenway, and eight state trails. These lands encompass over 400 miles of trails and attract more than three million visitors annually.

photo of Ron Strickland
Photo by: John Moran

The office also purchases land for trails and greenways to be developed and managed by local communities. Florida Forever program provides $4.5 million per year of funding for trail acquisition. One recent example is the longest rail trail corridor to be acquired by the state, the 51-mile East Central Regional Rail Trail project, purchased in 2007.

OGT has worked closely with the Florida Department of Transportation and metropolitan planning organizations to ensure that trails are an integral part of the state's bicycle and pedestrian planning. One result of these efforts is that the statewide multi-use trails vision was integrated into Florida's Statewide Bicycle Facilities Study. These corridors represent bikeways that can serve as components of Florida's alternative transportation system. OGT also works with FDOT to encourage acquisition of land for trails along roadways during acquisition of road rights of way.

photo of Ron Strickland
Photo by: John Moran

Trails and Health

Recognizing the importance of trails in maintaining the health and quality of life of citizens, OGT partners with the Florida Department of Health to encourage the integration of trails into statewide health planning. OGT serves on the Leadership Council of the Florida Physical Activity and Healthy Nutrition Network and has successfully pursued the inclusion of trails-related action steps within multiple strategies of the 2006-2010 Florida Obesity Prevention Plan. In 2007 OGT also presented to the Governor's Council on Physical Fitness regarding trails and their health benefits. Trails were incorporated into the Council's Recommendations for a State Plan of Action.

Trails and Tourism

Stemming from the critical importance of tourism to florida's economy, OGT has partnered with Visit Florida, the state's official tourism marketing entity to promote trails. OGT serves on Visit Florida's nature Based Tourism Committee working to ensure that trails are an important component of the state's tourism marketing. OGT has also helped develop Florida's Bicycle,Hiking, and Paddling Trails Guides.

Off-Highway Vehicle Trails

OGT is actively pursuing motorized trails in Florida. Through the Recreational Trails Program, OGT has previously offered a motorized-only funding cycle to stimulate the development and establishment of new OHV trails and recreation areas.

OGT also officially serves on the Big Cypress National Preserve OHV Advisory Committee which was established by the Department of Interior to examine issues and make recommendations on the management of OHVs in Big Cypress National Preserve.

Read the details of winners of the 2008 National Trails Awards and awards from 2006 - 2004 - 2002 - 2000

General sessions
Keynote speakers
Featured workshops
Mobile workshops
Concurrent sessions

More things to do

Exhibit Hall
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Sponsorship levels

National Awards
Be a volunteer

Volunteer signup
Planning team

Austin 2004
Quad Cities 2006
Little Rock 2008
Chattanooga 2010

2006 Awards
2008 Awards

The "Medical Mile" project

Art and Health on the Medical Mile

More photos: Cool Trail Solutions

The "Big Dam Bridge" project

Little Rock's Arkansas River Trail

Arkansas conquers a trails funding crisis

Little Rock Parks & Recreation

The Mississippi River Trail

Arkansas Trails page

Ozark-St. Francis National Forests

Ouachita National Forest

Symposium will celebrate 40th anniversary of National Trails System Act


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