SportsEvents Magazine

AUG 2017

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August 2017 24 www.sportseventsmagazine.com TOP 12 OUTDOOR ADVENTURE SPORTS SPOTS Milwaukee, Wisconsin With Lake Michigan's western shore as a backdrop, Milwaukee offers an abundance of outdoor adventure sports, including windsurfing, jet skiing, sailing, freshwa- ter surfing and beach volleyball. Off the water, runners and bikers can travel along the more than 100 miles of Oak Leaf Trail that runs along an abandoned railroad corridor from the lakefront through wooded areas along the Milwaukee River. The Hank Aaron State Trail in the Menomonee River Valley is another place that attracts bikers. The North Point Lighthouse in Lake Park gives climbers a view of downtown and Lake Michigan from the top of the 60-foot observation tower at the Schlitz Audubon Nature Center. Milwaukee has about 15,000 acres of parks with trails, beaches, toboggan runs and more ways to get outside. The Milwaukee River Challenge in September at Schlitz Park is in its sixth year and takes runners on a scenic 5K along the Riverwalk. www.visitmilwaukee.org 10 Eugene, Oregon Located on the Willamette River, the Eugene, Cascades and Coast calls itself an adventure-driven destination that appeals to those who like a little variety. With oceans, mountains, lakes, rivers and sand, adventurers can find any setting that suits them. Dune buggy across the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, which stretches along the coast for 40 miles over constantly shifting sand that creates mountains up to 500 feet high down to flat beach. The area also appeals to sandboard- ers. In the winter, the Cascade Mountains attracts those who want to ski, snowshoe, cross country ski or tube. A new adventure available in the area is tree climbing: climbers are able to ascend 150 feet into the forest canopy. Those new to the sport and experienced rock climbers can enjoy a different kind of challenge with a tree-top perspective. Back on ground, the Eugene Pro Rodeo is held at the Oregon Horse Center each July but horseback riding is available for all skill levels through forests, over the sand dunes or up mountain passages. Eugene and the surrounding area hosts events such as the Roma Prima Tri at the Grove triathlon, the Eugene Sand Master Jam sandboarding event at Honeyman State Park and the Oregon Gran Fondo bike race, to name a few. www.eugenecascadescoast.org 12 Ocala / Marion County, Florida Located in central Florida's Marion county, Ocala offers easy access, a temperate climate and numerous places to get back to nature in the Ocala National Forest or in one of the many parks. With springs, trails and natural areas, Ocala and Marion County is known for outdoor sports. It's also known as the Horse Capital of the World for its more than 700 horse farms covering more than 30,000 acres. Because of its equine ties, the area hosts regional, national and international horse shows, includ- ing jumping and driving events. The area is also popular for naturalists who enjoy the three first-magnitude natural artesian springs. Ocala / Marion County has more than 110 miles of hiking and biking trails, and plentiful areas for kayaking and boating. Athletes often challenge themselves to obstacle and adventure races, including Xtreme Air's Ocala 5K races. The Santos Trailhead on the Marjorie Harris Carr Cross Florida Greenway is a state park and home to the Santos Fat Tire Festival each March, presented by the Ocala Mountain Bike Association. The Santos Fat Tire Bike Expo is the largest collection of bicycle manufacturers and shops in the southeast with more than 50 companies represented. More than 1,000 people attended the annual event in March generating an economic impact of $206,521 and 650 hotel rooms booked. www.ocalamarion.com 11

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