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JEFFERSON CITY, MO, OCT. 18, 2022 – A ribbon-cutting ceremony officially opened the Carolyn Bagley Harding Trail at Thousand Hills State Park on Oct. 18, 2022. The ceremony took place at the South Trailhead.

Prior to the ceremony, Missouri State Parks Director David Kelly spoke to attendees about the trail. Governor Mike Parson and Missouri Department of Natural Resources Director Dru Buntin were also on hand to assist with the ribbon cutting and provide remarks.

“This trail is named in honor of lifelong Kirksville resident Carolyn Bagley Harding, who appreciated the park and could be found hiking the trails here,” Kelly said.

The Carolyn Bagley Harding Trail completes the park’s phase two of the Forest Lake Area Trail System. This phase included the installation of a half mile-long, paved walking and biking trail that connects Campground 1 to join the park office and extends down to the existing Forest Lake Trail in Campground 2. This creates a safer trail for park users, allowing them access to the entire day use area of the park without having to walk or bike along the highway.

This trail was funded through a Land Water Conservation Fund grant, a donation from the Missouri State Parks Foundation via an anonymous donation and state park funding. The trail’s construction was completed by S and A Equipment and Builders from Fulton.

Thousand Hills State Park is located at 20431 State Highway 157 in Kirksville. For more information, call 660-665-6995.

For more information on state parks and historic sites, visit Missouri State Parks is a division of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

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