Ever year Trail System officials strive to make Trailfest better than the previous year and this year was no different. Pinkerton explained that they added and tried to improve upon the featured event such as the mud pit, drag racing and the new ATV sled pull.
The Trail Authority increased their signage and decorations for the event and made improvements to traffic flow and increased the fireworks display on Saturday night. The officials also tried to improve upon the children’s course.
“We are in our ninth year of Trailfest and our eighth year at the Larry Joe Harless Community Center in Gilbert and we improve every year,” said Pinkerton. “I think every year our attendance has gone up and every year we get a little bit better at what we do, things run smoother and we always try to add a few new touches.”
“Over all we are really pleased, I think this is our best event yet,” said Pinkerton. “I want to thank all our local volunteers and a lot of support with Trailfest this year.”
“If we didn’t have the support and volunteers we could not begin to do this and the community has been tremendous to us and everyone really pulls together every Fall for Trailfest and we appreciate it.”
This year’s totals are comparable with those of 2008, with approximately 2,000 riders, which includes local participates, general trail riders and area spectators. Pre-registration numbers increased this year with over 600 scheduling in advance, last year the trail only reported 458 riders.
“Our pre-register numbers were way up, our on-site numbers were on par with last year, but our spectator numbers were down a little this year mainly because of the rain and winds on Friday night,” said Pinkerton. “If we would have had good weather on Friday night I think our numbers would have been up significantly because everything else across the board had increased.”
Accidents were low this year, with only minor accidents and no serious injuries and only one on-site accident during a drag race event.
“The event generally hasn’t changed much over the few years, we still do the same kind of activities, like drag racing, mud pitting and the demo rides,” Pinkerton said. “We have done those for three years straight, as well as, and the activities at the Center, meals, Casino night, Scavenger Hunt and the Fall Festival, and another event was the ATV sled pull, which we wanted to be an added bonus to make the event better.”
Vendors at this year’s event included Kawasaki, Warren, Logan Motor Cycle Sales, Keefer’s Kawasaki, Best Western in Chapmanville, Tucker Rocky and Kendra ATV Tires. Three additional vendors, Can-Am, KTM and Yamaha all did Demo Rides.
Throughout the event residents of the area pay $20 for a package entrance price. However Hatfield-McCoy only charged $10 on Sunday in honor of a special Local Appreciation Night, which was also something newly added to the weekend.