WEST TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – One of the area’s most active parks got an addition years in the making.

Construction is complete on a 0.6-mile long, 10-foot-wide accessible asphalt trail with a parking area in Bicentennial Park. This was celebrated by a “Turtle Trot” race which allowed children to be the first people to use this trail.

Being healthy and active is something that Vigo County is trying their hardest to promote. Trails like these make achieving this a whole lot easier.

This also allows people to explore parts of the community they may not know about. Bryan Horsman is the president of Riverscape, and he expresses how events like these open people’s eyes to what they have available.

“When the DNR acquired these wetlands years ago, a lot of people don’t know about it here in the community. So, it’s what can we do as an organization to advocate for that,” said Horsman.

The walking trails in this area in particular are some of the more popular in the area. However, the wetlands and river aren’t nearly as popular.

Adam Grossman is the superintendent for Vigo County Parks and Recreation, and he explains how this trail is filtering the success of the trails to the surrounding areas.

“It’s wildly successful. We are getting people out here and different groups of people from all different parts of the county. We wanted to capitalize on that success and bring people in and in our niche of things, bring them in to see the wetlands. Bring them in to see the river, wildflowers, and prairie grass. It is educational while also getting them outside,” said Grossman.

This trail was backed up tremendously by the Vigo County Health Department. They donated roughly $137,000 to fund the construction of the trail.

Joni Wise is the administrator for the Vigo County Health Department, and she says why they supported this trail as much as they did.

“Being outdoors, doing activities such as walking, running, pushing a stroller, riding a bike are all things that get people outside and get them moving. The more people exercise and are outdoors, it does contribute to their sense well-being and to their health,” said Wise.

All of the people involved in making this trail possible all shared the same core value. They wanted people to use this trail to better themselves and this community.

“Seeing the kids and the families enjoy Bicentennial Park, enjoy the trails, and enjoy what we have out here, that made it all worthwhile,” added Grossman.

This trail connects Bicentennial Park to the wetlands and Dewey Point. It is now officially open to the public.