In May 2019, the Outdoor Recreation Council of Appalachia (ORCA) council of governments was formed to utilize outdoor recreation assets to deliver economic, health, social, environmental, and quality of life benefits to Ohioans, and develop the world-class Baileys Trail System across jurisdictional boundaries. In August of that year the ORCA Advisory Board was created to utilize multi-disciplinary opportunities to plan and access development and planning grant funding.
Prior to ORCA’s creation by Athens County Jurisdictions, stakeholder engagement and planning for development of the Baileys Trail System began with Wayne National Forest and Athens Bicycle Club in 2016. In 2017 Wayne National Forest Staff, Athens Bicycle Club Members, Local Business Owner, City of Athens and Athens County Planning Directors, Athens County Foundation Director, Ohio University Faculty, Athens City-County Health Department Staff, and other agencies and community members began attending community planning meetings for development of the Baileys Trail System.
The grassroots community-based collaborative planning efforts of the Baileys Trail System project highlighted the mutually beneficial economic, social, environmental, and healthy lifestyle opportunities sustainable development of a world class recreation asset brings to rural areas. It is that realization, which prompted the creation of ORCA.
The undeniable citizen support for the Baileys Trail System enabled elected officials to develop ORCA to implement the project, and replicate our new sustainable development model as needed throughout Appalachian Ohio.
Member Jurisdictions pay or donate membership dues, based on population density,
to sustain ORCA’s development and management of the Baileys Trail System.
Baileys Trail System Sponsors and Grantors have invested more than $100,000
in development of the Baileys Trail System
Partners collaborate on projects in and related to the Baileys and ORCA’s
collaborative regional efforts.
Our Nonprofit Wing
In 2019 the Athens- Wayne Outdoor Asset Development Corporation (AWOADC), a 501(c) 3, was formed. The AWOADC, operated by ORCA staff, establishes revenue generating social enterprises enabling ORCA to successfully maintain world-class recreation assets like the Baileys Trail System.