Friends of Spanish Moss Trail to unveil markers

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The Friends of the Spanish Moss Trail (FSMT) will host a community event at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 27 at the Depot Trailhead to celebrate the unveiling of the first seven historic markers that will be installed along the Spanish Moss Trail.

The markers were made possible by the FSMT leadership and generous funds from Beaufort 300 and the Beaufort County accommodations tax.

These markers are the first of more than 50 points of interest and history that have been identified by historians and community members serving on a FSMT-led Historic Sign Committee. This committee’s 18-month long research uncovered much of the 14-mile linear path’s rich history – including the Magnolia Line, Civil War, Mather School and the phosphate industry.

“Were it not for the burning desire of those who serve on this committee, to discover the past in order to preserve it for the future, it would not be possible to erect historical markers of this nature,” said Frank Emminger, FSMT board member and chair of the Historic Sign Committee.

The FSMT also recently announced the opening of an additional 2.5 miles of the Spanish Moss Trail – from Roseida Road to Poppy Hill Road – bringing the Lowcountry a fully-connected, 9-mile trail that provides a seamless route from Port Royal to the communities north of the Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS).

In the last year, an estimated 36,500 people explored the trail by bike or on foot. This rails-to-trail greenway is now one of the recreational centerpieces for Northern Beaufort County with an 18-mile round trip experience for residents and visitors to the area.

Its 10-Phase Master Plan, which when complete, will be a 14-mile long, 12-foot wide, paved trail dedicated to pedestrians and bicyclists. Public parking is located along the trail with rest area trailheads at Westvine Drive, Broome Lane, Depot Road, Beaufort Plaza Shopping Center and Roseida Road.