Trail Talk - Spring 2017

Trail Talk returns as we become better accustomed to our new web site design! In this issue of Trail Talk we'll have a short retrospective on the 2017 Miami Valley Cycling Summit in Greene County, and take a little tour of the Miami Valley Trails web site with a particular look at the Events Calendar.

Cycling Attracts...

Greene County was our host on the campus of Wright State University for the region's fifth Miami Valley Cycling Summit, on May 5, 2017. Spitting rain was not a deterrent as leaders, cycling advocates and jurisdiction staff joined together for a day of informative speakers, celebrations of our accomplishments and planning for our future. The exhibit halls were filled with agencies, private companies and advocacy organizations from the Miami Valley and beyond. Sessions followed one of four tracks: Health and Safety, Partnerships and Collaboration, Policy and Funding, and Economic Impact & Community Development. Sessions brought speakers from all over the state and across the country to speak about the benefits and joys of cycling.

The schedule finished with a series of community work sessions, in which citizens and leaders developed simple action plans for continuing progress in their own communities. At the final plenary, Bike Miami Valley recognized the efforts of Charles "Ed" Dressler, and of the Ohio Bike Federation and all their work to advance cycling in our region and across Ohio. Finally, in the end, Greene County passed on the handle bars to the City of Miamisburg, hosts of the 2019 Cycling Summit! 

Bike Miami Valley has placed a lot of great summary information from the Cycling Summit on the event web site, including community session results, all of the power point presentations, and a terrific library of pictures by Summit Photographer Amanda Barbosa. All the photos in this article are from Ms. Barbosa.

Getting Used to the New Place

Just like many of our web site users, we too have been taking some time to get used to the new Miami Valley Trails web site design. The purpose of the re-design project was to make sure the site was user friendly to people using the site on mobile devices, such as smart phones and tablet computers. The site metrics were telling us that as many as 40% of site traffic was coming through mobile users. So that means the site design needed to work with users who are not using a keyboard and mouse, which changes the way the site flows and navigates. Another upgrade was to the trails mapping feature. With more and more people accessing the site on a mobile phone, it was decided to create the ability for teh site to work with the phones' GPS function, allowing site users to see where they are in relation to the Miami Valley Trails. So, if you give the site permission, it will place a blue dot on the map that represents your current location.

The Miami Valley Trails events calendar continues as an important feature of the site. We hope to list as many events that use some part of the Miami Valley Trails as we can. To make that easier, we have added a link to submit an event for inclusion on the calendar; just provide us all the details and, after review, if it is appropriate it will be added to the calendar.

Trail Alerts are a feature that has changed. To find out if a particular trail has any active alerts, head on over to our Trail Information page. This page has "cards" for each of the Miami Valley Trails. Clicking (or tapping) on any of those cards will take you to all of the basic trail information that the site has to offer, including attractions and communities along the trail, trail length, etc. But take note that some of the trail cards have a red flag across the top. Click (or tap) on the flag and the current alerts for that trail will be displayed. And as always you can help us learn of issues along the trails by using the "Report a Problem" form

Anyway, however you are using the site, we truly hope you find the information and inspiration you need to get out and experience the Miami Valley Trails this year.

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