The city of Hernando held two ribbon cutting ceremonies on Friday, one to officially open a new trail at Renasant Park and the other to open a linear park in the city.
The Renasant Park Trail on the south side of Hernando was opened as Mayor Tom Ferguson cut the ribbon to welcome the additional recreational opportunity at the park.
There are two entrances to the trail. The front entrance is on Highway 51 South across from Tegra Medical. The second entrance is on the backside of the Williamsbrook Subdivision located off of Robertson Gin Road.
Funding for the trail came with grants from Mississippi Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks ($120,000). With a Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation Health Heroes grant and Healthy Hometown Award ($125,000), the city was able to build a 1.7 mile nature trail that can be accessed by walkers, runners and cyclists. The trail also connects to the back side of the Civic Center ball fields.
The second official ribbon cutting took place at the new $1 million Linear Park. Funding came from $650,000 LPA (Limited Partnership Agreement) funds, $200,000 from the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT), and $200,000 from the City of Hernando.
Mayor Tom Ferguson, MDOT Northern District Transportation Commissioner John Caldwell, Hernando Board of Aldermen, Pastor Wade Stevens from Longview Point Baptist Church, who provided an invocation, city representatives, and others who worked on the project attended the event.
It was noted that it was former Northern Mississippi Transportation Commissioner Mike Tagert who helped start the project and current Commissioner John Caldwell provided the Alternative Transportation Funding to finish the project. Vince Thillen, P.E. ETI was the project engineer and Neel-Schaffer Engineering was the contract engineer.
The 10-foot wide trail built for two-way non-motorized vehicles extends from the intersection at Commerce Street Extended and McIngvale Road to the intersection at Byhalia Road and McIngvale Road for a total length of 1.6 miles.
This is the first of two phases which will extend the trail to Green T Road bringing the final length of the trail to 2.5 miles. Anticipated completion date of the second phase to Green T Road is this fall.