Fruita businesses support trail expansion

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FRUITA, Colo. (KKCO/KJCT) -- Some businesses in Fruita are teaming up to raise money for trails in the Kokopelli Trail system. And new data shows it's a wise investment in our region.

Whether you hike, bike, or camp on them, the local trail systems bring a lot of people and a lot of money to the region.

Colorado Mesa University recently looked at the economics of Bureau of Land Management trails at Kokopelli, 18 Road, and the Lunch Loops systems.

"There is about a $14.5 million impact for those trails and that counts for 345 jobs full-time or part-time," said Tim Casey, the Natural Resource Center director at CMU. "It's not by any means the largest driver in our economy, but it is a significant player."

Because these trails equal such big bucks, local businesses in Fruita are coming together to raise money to expand trails in the Kokopelli Loop.

Nearly a dozen other Fruita businesses will give those sales to Colorado Plateau Mountain Bike Trail Association. COPMOBA is working on several projects in the Kokopelli area.

"People are coming here after they are done playing and talking about what they've done, or where they hiked, or who they met, and all the things that go along with it," said Jen Zeuner, owner of Hot Tomato. "And it kind of just tags along with the experience of Fruita."

These are the businesses raising money for new trails:

Hot Tomato
Over The Edge
The Copper Club
Colorado Backcountry Biker
Bestslope Coffee
Suds Brothers Brewery
Aspen Street Coffee
The Locke Room
Wildcat Car Wash
Chesnick Realty
Robinson Realty

On April 28, the Grand Valley Bike Swap and movie night in downtown Fruita will donate to this purpose as well. It's at Civic Center Park from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

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