County appealing for outdoor events

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Shelby County has always been considered a great place for outdoor activities in the Birmingham area.

From the hiking and biking trails at Oak Mountain to the waters of Lay Lake, our county is full of beautiful places for people to enjoy the outdoors.

It seems like in the past few years, however, people outside of the Birmingham metro area have taken notice of all that Shelby County has to offer.

The Bassmasters Classic will return to Lay Lake for the first time since it was last held here in 2002.

The Great American Cross Country Race comes to Shelby Park at Spain Park High School on Sept. 23.

The event brings nearly 2,000 high school, college and professional runners from around the country and the world to compete in five and eight kilometer races.

More than 600 mountain bikers from across the U.S., including a number of professional riders, will converge on Oak Mountain State Park this weekend for the 12th annual BUMP and Grind mountain bike race.

Competition continues the following weekend at the park as the Nissan XTerra Triathlon Southeastern Championships come to Pelham for a three-day event.

Each of these events not only brings notoriety to the county but also plenty of family and friends spending money on hotels and food while they&8217;re here.

Shelby County is quickly becoming a destination spot when it comes to outdoors activities.

With three major sporting events and plenty of local events happening every weekend at our local parks, we should feel proud of all that our county has accomplished.

We should applaud city and county leaders for working hard to bring these events to our county and encourage them to continue to solicit high profile events to pick Shelby County as a great place to come to.

These events will bring a lot of revenue to our cities, helping Shelby County residents to continue and enjoy the great outdoors that our area has to offer