WEST CHAZY - Having been mountain bike racing throughout the country for more than 20 years, Saranac native Paul Maggy has returned to the area, bringing his passion with him.
Maggy has been working toward opening a bike park in the Adirondacks for the past two years. Now his dream is a reality.
The Adirondack Bike Ranch, located at 88 Blue Chip Way, is old farm land owned by his parents. Now it is made up of 80 acres of bike trails with varying terrain.
"This park will have beginner trails, intermediate trails, advanced, terrain parks, all throughout the park," Maggy explained.
Maggy began mountain biking in the late 1980s, "before mountain biking was cool," he said. From there, he raced the pro circuit for four years, then continued to travel across the country promoting bike racing and bike parks.
"Mountain biking is a destination sport now, like skiing or snowboarding. People travel in groups or families to go ride different bike parks; see the areas," Maggy explained. "So, that's what I'm trying to create here."
What Maggy finds so important about mountain biking is the health benefits.
"Mountain biking is an industry that's non-impact, it's healthy, it's sustainable recreation. And, it's outdoors," he said.
"The leading causes of death in the North Country are heart disease [and] obesity. Those two things could be alleviated by a few hours a week on a bike," he added.
The grand opening for the bike park will be Saturday, April 18, from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. There will be various races including a kids race in which all participants will receive a trophy.
"This is about starting from youth," explained Maggy. "Teaching kids bike skills. The healthy lifestyle that biking creates. That it's not something that you have to give up when you're 16, when you get a car."