Andy Ostmeyer: The Rock Island Trail rocks Windsor | joplinglobe.com

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With the opening of the Rock Island Spur last December, life began changing for Kim Henderson’s west-central Missouri hometown.

Windsor has always gotten cycling traffic because of its location on the 240-mile Katy Trail, which runs from Machens, near St. Louis, to Clinton and attracts 400,000 visitors a year.

But, said Henderson, owner of Kim’s Cabins, “We have been a pass-through.”

“Nice little town,” they’d tell her as they pedaled out for Sedalia or Clinton. “We went through and ate lunch. See you later.”

Then, last December, the state opened a 471/2-mile spur connecting the Katy Trail at Windsor to Pleasant Hill on the south side of Kansas City, creating for the first time a true cross-state trail. It makes Windsor — population 3,000 — the “epicenter” of the state’s two longest rail-to-trail efforts, said Henderson, borrowing a term she said she got from Bill Bryan, former director of Missouri State Parks.

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