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    Elkhart County 4-H Fair making access for bicyclists, pedestrians easier

    City officials hope pedestrians, bicyclists have easier access to fairgrounds through completion of Monroe Street Trail.

    Posted on July 15, 2014 at 5:35 p.m.

    The final touches are being added to the Monroe Street Trail construction this week, just in time for the 2014 Elkhart County 4-H Fair

    Jeremy Yahwak, the project engineer said Monday, July 14, guard railings were being installed near the train tracks and the last few signs were being put up. He expects the trail to be completed by Friday, when the fair starts. Construction began in late August.

    If you are interested in walking or riding your bike to the fair, this is what you need to know:

    GETTING THERE

    Goshen has several bike trails, many of which can be combined into routes leading to the fairgrounds. The Monroe Street Trail, the city’s newest addition to the list of bike trails, starts off at the intersection of Monroe Street and U.S. 33 running all the way to Gate 5 of the fairgrounds.

    Bicyclists can also take the Pumpkinvine Trail, which runs along Abshire Park and continues onto Rock Run Creek, and connects to the Monroe Street Trail.

    PARKING

    A bicycle parking lot was built at the fair this year, and it will be at Gate 2. Kristy Ambrosen, Elkhart County 4-H Fair marketing coordinator, said about 10 bike racks will be placed at the parking lot. Each rack has the capacity for up to 10 or 12 bikes. Ambrosen said if the fair sees the need they can borrow bike racks from other areas. 

    SAFETY

    Ambrosen said the fair board has a good working relationship with city and county law enforcement agencies, which are in charge of traffic control. Any safety measures in and outside of the fairgrounds are planned by the Goshen City Department and the Elkhart County Sheriff’s Department. 

    BIKE TO THE FAIR EVENT

    To officially open the Monroe Street Trail and for the inauguration of the fair, the city of Goshen is inviting the community to join in a bike ride to the fairgrounds Friday morning

    Participants will meet between 7 and 7:30 a.m. at the parking lot on the intersection of Lincoln Avenue and Fifth Street and depart at 7:30. They will use the new trail along Monroe Street and arrive at the grand stand at around 8 for a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

    For the event only, bike riders will be able to ride around the track in the fairgrounds. Afterward, they will be escorted to the bike racks at Gate 2.

    Anyone interested in participating in the bike event can pre-register before Thursday, July 17, through the Goshen Park and Recreation Department at 574-534-2901. The first 100 riders to pre-register will receive a free one-day admission to the fair.

    Follow Elkhart Truth reporter Sharon Hernandez on Twitter at @Sharon_HT


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