Sedona Chamber Working on Complex Challenges
THIS ARTICLE APPEARS IN THE RED ROCK NEWS
March 18, 2022
Your Chamber is laser-focused on serving as the voice of regional business, managing a community approach to tourism in partnership with the City, and advocating for a balanced, sustainable economy that complements our quality of life, environment and the Sedona experience we offer visitors.
Two events, one occurring recently and the other on the immediate horizon, demonstrate how our community gets real-world results by working together to tackle these challenges.
Next Thursday, March 24, the City will launch the much-anticipated Sedona Shuttle, a new chapter in Sedona’s public transit story. The first phase of the Sedona Shuttle will offer free park and ride service on brand new shuttle buses to Cathedral Rock, Dry Creek, Little Horse and Soldier Pass trailheads. The shuttles will originate from two Park and Ride lots – just north of the Arrow Drive Y on SR 179 and at Posse Grounds Park. And it’s not just for visitors – residents are welcome, too, of course!
The Forest Service will close the parking lots at the Cathedral Rock and Soldier Pass trailheads when shuttles are running, Thursday through Sunday, from 8:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., further encouraging shuttle use. We are working with our hotels and resorts to inform visitors of the service and reinforce our sustainability goals of enhancing transit, reducing vehicle traffic and increasing public safety.
On March 10, we hosted a ceremonial check delivery of $102,000 from the Chamber’s Sedona Trail Keepers 2.0 program to the Sedona Red Rock Trail Fund (SRRTF). The SRRTF partners with the USFS Red Rock Ranger District to provide dollars and workers to defray the cost of maintaining the 400+ miles of trails that transport residents and visitors to the splendors of Red Rock Country.
Fifty-two chamber members contributed $1,000 each to the Trail Keepers program. We matched their contribution up to $50,000 with bed tax dollars allocated to the Chamber by the City Council under our destination management partnership. Trail Keepers 2.0 is the follow-on to the phenomenally successful Trail Keepers program, which concluded in February 2021 after raising $370,000 over five years. Trail Keepers 2.0 will also run for five years.
SRRTF volunteers and paid workers have built retaining walls, rock stairs, drainage structures and more. Red Rock Ranger District Ranger Amy Tinderholt said crews improved Boynton, Bear and Doe Mountain trails last year and helped with improvements and soil restoration east of Courthouse Butte and Bell Rock. That’s teamwork!
Incredibly, we aimed to have 50 business participants but exceeded that goal by two, a tribute to the vision of our local community and their commitment to step up for our trails, some of Sedona’s most crucial infrastructure. You can see a list of these generous people at SedonaTrailKeepers.com.
In totality, SRRTF has raised more than $1.5 million since 2015 to keep our trails in good repair. I want to thank SRRTF President Kevin Adams and his team for being a shining example of the Sedona volunteer spirit and the community’s ability to deliver results.
I believe the lesson we can take from these two events is that Sedonans can solve complex challenges and make good things happen with determination and cooperation. These real-world results are precisely what we need and should expect from each other, as together, we make Sedona the best place to live, work, play and visit.
–Michelle Conway, Interim President/CEO
Sedona Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau