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trail tales
ANewName for
On July 6, 2012, President Obama
signed into law our nation’s next
federal transportation bill, Moving
Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century
MAP-21). This two-year transporta-
tion bill redefines the Transportation
Enhancements (TE) program, the larg-
est source of funding for trails, walking
and bicycling projects, as Transportation
Among the most dramatic changes is
a 30 percent overall decrease in available
funding, and Transportation Alternatives
now includes the Recreational Trails and
Safe Routes to School programs. The bill
greatly increases states’ ability to transfer
funds away from these core trail, walking
and bicycling programs—arguably the
most problematic outcome. The revised
program also eliminates long-established
categories such as pedestrian and bicycle
safety and educational programs; acqui-
sition of scenic or historic easements
and sites; scenic or historic highway
programs including tourist and welcome
centers; and establishment of transporta-
tion museums.
The Transportation Alternatives pro-
gram now has nine eligible activities—
down from the original 12 of TE—
including the addition of environmental
mitigation and construction, planning
and design of infrastructure-related
projects that provide safe routes for non-
drivers. Additionally, half of the funding
for the program will now be distributed
based on population, and the remaining
half distributed statewide.
For more information on MAP-21
and changes to
Tracy Hadden Loh
at tracy@railsto
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What’s the kookiest event you’ve
ever seen or participated in on
a rail-trail? What made it so
wacky – the theme, the people
or animals!), the costumes?
January 31, 2013.
Do you have a favorite
trailside restaurant or bar?
By Michelle Schmiedeler, North Kansas City, Mo.
n mile marker 169.5 of the Katy Trail
State Park, you will find McBaine,
Mo., home of Lucy’s Bar & Grill. And if
it wasn’t for Lucy’s, you would surely miss
the town itself. According to the
article from 2007 that hangs
on the wall there, only 17 people live in
McBaine, and Lucy’s is the only moneymak-
ing establishment.
Lucy’s is the town’s epicenter, where the
townspeople meet and gather daily. And
why not? The beer is icy cold and the burg-
ers are good. And, if you’ve been camping
along the trail at close-by Katfish Katy’s or
Cooper’s Landing, they serve breakfast as
Coraletta Houck recom-
mends Freed’s Diner along
the North Bend Rail in
West Virginia:
racy Freed, a retired
employee of the trail
maintenance crew, often
sits and chats with us. He
shares tales of the freight
and passenger trains that
once stopped at the Cairo
Joe Clayton suggests the
Old Plank Trail Tavern (aka
Gracies) in Frankfort, Ill.:
hen you look at
the facade of the
tavern, you can envision a
horse tied to the hitching post
out front. It’s right out of the
Wild West. But don’t be sur-
prised if you see a Harley next
to that bicycle. The tavern
welcomes all walks.”
Susan H. Lowry raves about
Grillots along the Tammany
Trace in Louisiana:
fter biking several
miles from
Mandeville, we stopped at
Grillots for lunch. This eatery
is famous for its barbecued
oysters—and justly so!”
The Katy Trail runs behind Lucy’s,
so you have to jump off the trail to get
around to the front. Once you do, there
are plenty of racks to accommodate your
bicycles. Once in, you can settle in at the
bar or one of many tables and take in
the cowboy décor, complete with juke-
box and cigarette machine.
I’ve been to Lucy’s four times during
the past couple of years, and to be hon-
est, I’ve planned my Katy Trail bike treks
around making sure I have at least one
or two) stops at Lucy’s.
With so many incredible responses, we had to share a few other snippets:
Read full responses at