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Contact: Maggie Walker, 662-680-4005
With the help of the Natchez Trace Parkway Association (NTPA) through its Gary Holdiness Cycling Fund, Natchez Trace Parkway staff members are celebrating National Bike Month and the National Park Service Centennial by actively promoting bicycle visibility and safety.
"We are excited to be working with the Natchez Trace Parkway Association and its Holdiness Fund to promote bicycle visibility and safety along the Natchez Trace Parkway. As the National Park Service gets ready to celebrate our Centennial in 2016, we are encouraging everyone to rediscover their National Parks, especially those close to home. Bicycling is one of the many ways visitors can experience the Parkway," said Superintendent Mary Risser.
The Gary Holdiness Cycling Fund was established by the association to honor the memory of Dr. Gary Holdiness by perpetuating his love for bicycling the Natchez Trace Parkway and to make it a safe environment for bicyclists. Natchez Trace Parkway Association member Donna Holdiness has supported donations and distributed safety supplies purchased through the fund to park rangers. "Gary loved this Parkway and wanted others to enjoy it too; now bicyclists can benefit from the memorial fund established in his honor," stated Mrs. Donna Holdiness.
Park staff will launch a campaign to interact with bicyclists in a new, engaging way. When bicyclists are seen using and wearing the proper high-visibility safety equipment, they will be acknowledged and given a small gift. To increase visibility of all bicyclists, those who are not easily seen will be given a gift from the Gary Holdiness Cycling Fund. Thanks to the generous donation, a high-visibility vest and set of bicycle lights will be given to cyclists to use while bicycling the Parkway while the supplies last.
The Natchez Trace Parkway encourages all motorist and bicyclists to follow safety practices while enjoying the Parkway. Motorists are reminded to safely change lanes when passing bicyclists and to avoid driving while distracted. Bicyclists should ride single file and wear high-visibility clothing. Organized groups seeking to plan a bicycling or other special event should visit www.nps.gov/natr for information about the Natchez Trace Parkway and obtaining a special use permit. For more information about the Natchez Trace Parkway Association and the Gary Holdiness Cycling Fund, please visit www.natcheztrace.org.