Your outdoor news bulletin for May 20th, the day Charles Lindbergh departed New York for Paris in the first solo trans-Atlantic plane crossing in history:
Weekend Incidents Update
Two incidents cast a shadow on what were supposed to be fun, inspiring events this past weekend, and Blue Ridge Outdoors was at both of them.
First, was the car that plowed through the Hikers Parade at Trail Days in Damascus, Va. on Saturday, sending dozens to the hospital but luckily not killing anyone. The cause of the accident seems to pegged on an elderly man with a medical condition who was driving his car in the parade. The man, whose name has not been released, has been described as being in his 80s and is a former thru-hiker. There is no indication that this was an intentional act, but that the man suffered an unspecified medical problem at which point his vehicle accelerated to around 25 mph into the crowd walking in the parade.
Another incident with many less casualties, but of a more criminal nature occurred at Dominion RiverRock in Richmond on Saturday night. Reggae legend and leader of Toots and the Maytals Frederick “Toots” Hibbert was struck in the head by an empty glass vodka bottle while performing on stage. According to police, the suspect in the bottle tossing is William C. Lewis, 19, of Henrico County who is being charged with aggravated assault, a felony and misdemeanor public intoxication. Police say he stole the bottle from one of the RiverRock vendors before chucking it a stranger performing art for the community and ruining everyone’s good time.
New Campground at the New River Gorge
Two years in the making, a new climbers campground is finally becoming a reality in the New River Gorge. This past weekend, the American Alpine Club hosted the grand opening of the campground off of Ames Heights Rod/Co Route 5. The Fayetteville campground sits on 40 acres procured through a partnership between the AAC, the Access Fund, and local climbers and is within walking distance to popular New River Gorge climbing spots. The project is moving is phases and the plan calls for bathhouses, electricity, and other infrastructure eventually. Camping is free for a limited time, and this week, the AAC will be there handing out swag and info.
Fittest Cities Announced
The Healthy Living section of MSN.com announced the 10 Fittest and 10 Fattest Cities in America list and our offices are located in two of the top 10. Coincidence? I think not. The headquarters of our sister publication Elevation Outdoor is located in Boulder, Colorado, which came in at #1 in the rankings and our main BRO office is in the #2 fittest city, Charlottesville, Va. The rankings appear to be based solely on obesity rates from a 2012 Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, which states the national obesity average is 26.2 percent.