PARSIPPANY, NJ - Thirteen Hundred Miles. That's the distance of a loop uniting three 9/11 memorial locations: The World Trade Center, The Pentagon and the Flight 93 Memorial. That loop is now a bike trail and today in Parsippany, at the Morris County September 11th Memorial, a celebration was in order as the riders hit their 700 mile mark right here in Morris County.
The September 11th National Memorial Trail Alliance is hosting the first-ever complete bike ride along the National Memorial Trail which connects all three memorials.
Today, the Morris County Park Commission hosted a welcoming ceremony as the riders made their brief stop here. Freeholder Kathy DeFillippo and Sherriff Jim Gannon participated in the event.
In a previously issued press release, Dave Helmer, Executive Director of the Park Commission had this to say, "We are privileged to have a trail with so much meaning that runs through our county. We thank those who have put in the time and effort into making this trail a success so the community can enjoy it for recreational purposes, while recognizing and remembering those impacted by the 911 tragic events.”
The inaugural ride on the trail is expected to take 23 days. The stop on Tuesday in Morris County is fitting since the unveiling of the first trail blazes on this national trail, a 1,300-mile tribute to first responders and victims of the 9/11 attacks on our nation, was held in July in Morris County (Randolph), which lost 63 residents in the 2001 attacks.
“Morris County is proud to have had the honor of unveiling the first blazes on this national trail that honors all of those who perished on September 11, 2001, and those who bravely responded to the attacks,’’ said Freeholder Director Doug Cabana in the press release.
In Morris County, the trail uses the same footprint as the Morris County Park Commission ‘signature’ trail, Patriots’ Path and transverses through 11 towns, including East Hanover, Hanover, Parsippany, Morris Township, Morristown, Mendham Township, Randolph, Chester Township, Chester Borough, Washington Township, and Mount Olive.
Beginning in 2004, the September 11th National Memorial Trail Alliance was formed to establish a memorial trail that links both the planned and existing memorial sites dedicated to September 11th, including the World Trade Center, Pentagon, and Flight 93 Memorial.
In addition to linking the three national memorials, the continuous trail also passes through over 50 landmarks such as the Eastern Continental Divide, Delaware Water Gap, and Morristown National Historical Park, and is accessible to automobiles, hikers, and bikers. The full trail map can be viewed by clicking here. It runs through parts of New York City, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and the District of Columbia.