On September 24-26, 2021, Cheaha State Park will host a Public Lands Day Festival featuring a variety of vendors, exhibitors, live music, guided programs, live animals and more. The festival is free to attend for overnight guests or with park admission. The park is located at 19644 Highway 281 in Delta, Alabama.
During the festival on Saturday, September 25, park staff will introduce Cheaha’s Legacy Story Trails – three new environmental education elements within its existing trails system. The Legacy Story Trails include the Shinrin-yoku Trail, the Tim Haney Sensory Trail and the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Time Traveler Adventure Quest Trail.
These new trail enhancements feature interpretive signage that offer guests a unique way to learn about nature, cultural heritage and environmental arts. The goal of the new Legacy Story Trails is to foster an appreciation for the value of nature, enjoyment of time outside and the uniqueness of Cheaha State Park. Each of the new trail enhancements is suitable for visitors of all ages.
LEGACY STORY TRAIL DESCRIPTIONS
The Shinrin-yoku Trail is a new element of the Mountain Laurel Trail and offers guests a mindful experience that celebrates the power of nature through interactions with water patterns, meditation and observing the colors and textures of the forest. This story trail incorporates the ancient practice of Shinrin-yoku (Japanese for “taking in the forest”) allowing it to improve mental and physical relaxation and well-being.
The Tim Haney Sensory Trail is a new element of the Leave No Trace Bigfoot Challenge Trail and is dedicated to Tim Haney, who selflessly served Alabama State Parks for 44 years before his well-deserved retirement in 2021. As Tim inspired thousands of State Parks staff through his years of service, this trail element aims to inspire park guests to open their senses and explore the uniqueness of the Cheaha State Park landscape.
The CCC Time Traveler Adventure Quest Trail is a driving trail that incorporates story elements at some of Cheaha’s most historic locations. This adventure quest offers guests the unique opportunity to learn about the natural history and cultural heritage of Alabama’s oldest state park through a fun, interactive parkwide adventure. At the completion of the quest, guests can decode a secret message left behind by the CCC.
The new Legacy Story Trails at Cheaha State Park were made possible through a generous grant from Legacy, Partners in Environmental Education. Legacy was created in 1992 to provide quality, fact-based environmental education materials to the citizens of Alabama. Today, the organization brings together state and federal agencies, businesses, environmental groups, associations and citizens to provide comprehensive environmental education programs without duplicating efforts of other organizations. Learn more about Legacy at legacyenved.org.