Hagerstown, MD (October 6, 2009): The City of Hagerstown would like citizens and visitors to take a stroll along one of five walking routes through Hagerstown's beautiful neighborhoods. The five routes are part of a new program entitled Hagerstown Walks. All of the routes start downtown in Public Square and make circuits through various areas of the City, passing along the way bustling neighborhoods, great architecture, wonderful parks, and historic sites.
Hagerstown Walks is for both those individuals who just started walking or are already established walkers. The five main routes are called the North End Walk, Jonathan Street Walk, City Park Walk, West End Walk and National Pike Walk. These routes feature seventy-seven intriguing points of interest that give one the opportunity to discover interesting facts about Hagerstown's rich history while simultaneously getting exercise.
Integrated into the points of interest are the City's new interpretive historic plaques. "The City has been lucky to gain State support through the Maryland Heritage Area Program for our plan to better interpret our rich history for the enjoyment and education of locals and visitors," stated Kathleen Maher, Hagerstown's Director of Planning. "Earlier this year, the City had 12 interpretive plaques created to tell the tale of our Civil War heritage, and they are scattered about the downtown at sites of significant events during the Civil War. We are presently having 15 interpretive plaques made which will be installed this fall. These plaques tell the tale of eight Hagerstown residents who played a significant role in the Civil War, expound upon the many prominent Hagerstown citizens of the past who were buried at Rose Hill cemetery, elaborate on the history of the Confederate Cemetery at Rose Hill, and interpret the history of 5 other historic sites in the city. The City of Hagerstown has received a third grant from the State to have 15 more plaques made of various aspects of Hagerstown's Civil War, African-American, rail, industrial, and leisure heritage and these plaques should be ready for installation early in 2010. Most of these plaques are or will be located along the walking routes of Hagerstown Walks!"
The Hagerstown Walks Brochure, the City's interpretative plaques program, and the Civil War Trails plaques were done through a partnership with the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau.
"This is a great partnership project with the City of Hagerstown and the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau," said Tom Riford the President and CEO of the Hagerstown-Washington County CVB. "The brochure highlights the historic plaques installed around Hagerstown. The plaques were created by City in partnership with the CVB, and through a grant from the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area. This map and brochure not only helps create positive recreational and fitness experiences, but also introduces visitors and residents alike to the history and heritage of Hagerstown. There are more than 24 plaques highlighted in the 5 walking trails, and many additional historic homes." Riford said that newcomers to Hagerstown love the brochure, which introduces people to the community and to the history of the area.
The Hagerstown Walks brochure also has great tips to make the walking experience more enjoyable and safe and a Walker's Log for individuals to record walking accomplishments.
If individuals would like a Hagerstown Walks brochure, they can visit the Hagerstown - Washington County CVB at 6 North Potomac St., or call 301-791-3246. The brochure is also on the City of Hagerstown website at www.hagerstownmd.org/Assets/HagerstownWalkRoutesMap.pdf.