Protectors and YouTubers are funding new, bike and hiking trails in the Canton Nature Park

Canton, NC (FOX Carolina) – A new bike and walking park is coming to West North Carolina.

Chestnut Mountain Nature Park will include a park-in-a-park: Berm Park. This comes after city manager Nick Shuer says it was planned to be a NASCAR training facility, an indoor ski resort, among other years ago.

The Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy teamed up with YouTube influencer Seth Alvo to raise crowdfunding and more than $ 3 million to make this happen.

Angela Shepherd is the Conservancy’s communications director.

“Blocks of adjoining land are becoming increasingly rare because we see things being disrupted by developments,” Shepherd said.

Schuer says The Town of Canton is building a 450-acre multi-use park. He says the park will include only bike and walking trails, a playground for a bike for kids, a picnic pavilion, scenic views, access to creek and more.

Berm Park is just one of its additions. It will be designed by Elevated Trails Design, LLC.

“What’s opening right now is that 35-acre section with the skills course. And then there’s a track for mixed use,” Shepherd said.

This project has been in the works for at least two years.

Samantha Franklin, of Candler, is excited about it.

“I’m just looking for another variety of trails,” Franklin said, “My husband is a mountain biker. So, he’s looking forward to the mountain bike trails.”

Franklin hopes this new park can become a place to hang out with her growing family.

“Since we have a newborn, we are looking for a place where we can take him to enjoy and explore and, hopefully, also get him to enjoy walking and biking,” Franklin said.

What is important for conservation is that the subsidy requires maintaining the land permanently.

“We’ll do some research to see exactly what types of species are out, and using the property, and moving; while people are also out and enjoying,” Shepherd said.

Chestnut Mountain Park and Berm Park will open on Saturday, April. 23 – The day after Earth Day. You can find it directly at Highway 23, in Canton.


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