Great Barrington, Massachusetts: An Appalachian Trail Community

Great Barrington, Massachusetts, is one of the select few towns chosen by The Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) to be honored as an Appalachian Trail Community(TM).

This, we believe, is far more noteworthy than Smithsonian Magazine's choice of Great Barrington as the winner of its 2012 The 20 Best Small Towns in America contest, but our perspective might be clouded by our appreciation for all Great Barrington has done for the Appalachian Trail.

The people of Great Barrington have also worked in harmony to make their area a hike-, bike- and walk-friendly place.

Representatives from the Great Barrington Trails and Greenways Alliance, among others, met in July of 2009 at the ATC's Kellogg Conservation Center to celebrate the treasured designation of Appalachian Trail Community.

Those who attended were treated to a picnic, ATC presentations, guided hikes, a tales from the trail program, an AT documentary screening, trail building work trips, and students interviewing AT thru-hikers.

The Appalachian Trail Community(TM) program is designed to recognize communities that promote and protect the Appalachian Trail (AT). Towns, counties, and communities along the AT's corridor are considered assets by AT hikers and many of these towns act as good friends and neighbors to the trail. The program serves to assist communities with sustainable economic development through tourism and outdoor recreation, while preserving and protecting the AT.

Designation as an Appalachian Trail Community(TM) and participation in the program has these goals:

  • Engage community citizens, trail visitors and stewards
  • Recognize and thank communities for their service to the trail and hikers
  • Act as a catalyst for enhancing sustainable economic development
  • Aid local municipalities and regional areas with conservation planning
  • Help local community members see the trail as a resource and asset

Click Here for AT Community Info

Click Here to Read the AT Communities Blog

About the Author Robert Sutherland:
Robert Sutherland is a travel writer enjoying life. Robert has two adult daughters and six grandchildren.
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