Riverfront Park trail, road given official names

Areas of the new Riverfront Park have been given official titles after the Fort Scott City Commission approved of names for the road and walking trail running through the park during their meeting Tuesday evening.

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Jerry Witt, chairman of the Riverfront Authority, said near the end of 2015, local law enforcement and emergency services requested that the road and trail be named so they can respond to the correct location of the park in the event of an emergency.

Since that time, Witt and others involved in the Marmaton Riverfront Project accepted suggestions for names from the community. Witt said they received between 25 and 30 names that the committee considered.

During the meeting, the commission approved of naming the half-mile, north walking trail Bell Town Trail, named after what that land had been known as in earlier years in honor of John Bell, an early Fort Scott resident, business owner and school board member for 13 years who died prior to 1920.

The south loop road will be named the River Loop Road to continue the theme of the river theme in the new park.

“That will always be significant to the people who donated to the park and donated the land, who knew it was a riverfront project,” Witt said of the naming of the road.

Mayor Cindy Bartelsmeyer said she liked the names and also appreciated Witt’s work on that project, which also includes seeking a grant to continue adding to the park.

Witt said they are considering building an event center near the Bell Town Trail area for concerts and a lookout pavilion that would be seen from the highway if the funding comes in. The committee will likely find out in March if they will receive that first grant, but in the meantime, Witt said they will continue developing the park.

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