Hello Trail Runners!
Welcome to Southeastern Ohio Trail Runners, or SEOTR for short. This is the first post on our new website, as we are a new grassroots 501(c)3 tax-exempt non-profit organization that covers Southeastern Ohio. Mainly we make up a group of people that love to run on trails and who want to share that passion with other people; we hope to impact the community by growing and establishing a trail running culture in SE Ohio.
Trail running is a unique outdoor activity that has the resources to thrive in SE Ohio. Just by looking at a map of Ohio, we see an abundance of State Parks, State Forests, and a National Forest. Some of the best locations to run trails in the area include:
- Strouds Run State Park
- Lake Hope State Park
- Zaleski State Forest
- Scioto Trail State Forest
- Great Seal State Park
- Shawnee State Forest and Park
- Tar Hollow State Forest
- Burr Oak State Park
- The Hocking Hills
- Wayne National Forest
- and many more natural spaces that are close to you!
What I love is the people that make up the culture of trail running. People run trails for the experience; whether they are seeking a shared experience with someone else or personal lived-experience of running through unique natural landscapes or cresting a ridge and seeing a beautiful view across a lake or gulley, people that run trails are good-natured, full of camaraderie, and looking for a good time on grueling terrain.
There are already many trail runners in the SE Ohio area, and SEOTR’s aim is to foster that community of trail runners and to be the central hub to share experiences, share information, and generally have a good time being on trails. We’ll do this by hosting group trial runs, directing trail races in the area, and holding other group events for the community and our members.
Another important objective for SEOTR is to give back to the trails we use. Whether we like to admit it or not, by running on trails we are impacting the land. Sometimes, that impact is negative or harmful; there is a lot of upkeep and maintenance that is involved in keeping the trails in good condition. SEOTR believes that a great way to improve the trails is to create awareness by actually running on the trails. People will start to make a connection and will develop a desire to give back to the trails. SEOTR aims to donate time and hours to the improvement of our public trails for all to enjoy.
Lastly, we are a membership driven organization. While group runs and events are generally open to the public, I urge you to consider becoming a member of SEOTR; you’ll enjoy perks such as discounts to SEOTR races, decision-making roles within the organization, and an invitation to our annual meeting of members (which will involve food!). Your member dues will go toward meeting the objectives of SEOTR and will help support our cause. You can visit the membership page here, where you can either sign-up electronically or use the print and mail-in method.
I couldn’t be more excited to be involved with SEOTR and begin to watch the growth of trail running in SE Ohio. Trail running is a unique experience and I hope you join us to start the process of growing the trail running culture in SE Ohio!