The inaugural trails of Paola Pathways were officially opened and dedicated to the citizens of Paola on June 14, 2014. This day marked the culmination of 2½ years of planning, educating, promoting, fundraising, as well as hosting the first-ever 5K on the trails.
During that first 5K, two 10-year-old running buddies crossed the finish line together, arms raised high in the air, hands clutched, not caring who crossed first. Because this gesture personified the spirit of determination and cooperation and how Paola Pathways trail system came to be, they were invited to cut the ribbon to officially open the trails.
Just like the boys, a small group of dedicated citizens with a common vision had worked together, encouraged one another, and with the support of the community, their dream had become a reality. Phase 1 was complete!
See images from the day, courtesy of the Sunflower Foundation: