Friday, August 19, 2022

Local business owner donates thousands to provide outdoor gym equipment

From left to right, Ruth Larson, JCC Board of Supervisors-Berkeley District; Cat Anthony, Executive Director, Virginia Capital Trail Foundation; and Steve Rose, Eco Discovery Park Founder and Spoke & Art Provisions Company. (WYDaily/Courtesy of James City County)

JAMES CITY COUNTY — If you’ve recently noticed the new outdoor gym equipment along the Virginia Capital Trail, there’s a person you can thank for that.

The equipment was funded thanks to a donation from Steve Rose, Eco Discovery Park Founder and Spoke & Art Provisions Co.

According to Rose, about $35,000 was left in the non-profit account for the Eco Discovery Park, which was a year-round destination for kayak and bike rentals near Jamestown Settlement. The business closed in 2015, and Rose said the money sat in an account ever since.

RELATED STORY: Eco Discovery Park to Close on May 31

“We were looking for an opportunity to use the money in way that would benefit the community and combine getting people outdoors and learning about nature,” Rose said in an interview.

The outdoor multigym exercise stations are installed in three locations along the Virginia Capital Trail – the Greensprings Interpretive Trail trailhead parking lot behind Jamestown High School, the trailhead near Jamestown Settlement, and close to the intersection of John Tyler Highway and Greensprings Road near Spoke & Art Provisions Co., according to a news release from James City County (JCC).

Rose started the endeavor at Spoke & Art Provisions Co., a restaurant café and bike rental shop connected to the Virginia Capital Trail, last May. He bought the building a few years ago and renovated it into the community hub it has become; housing cyclists, travelers, and outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds.

“I was very excited about the Virginia Capital Trail. When that building became available, I bought and renovated it,” he said. “My goal was for it to become a sort of community space.”

According to the news release from JCC, use of the Greensprings Interpretive Trail increased 106% in the midst of the pandemic, attracting more people to explore the outdoor trail.

Now, trail users can include strength to their cardio and endurance workouts along the trails.

Aside from Spoke & Art Provisions Co., Rose is also the president and co-founder of Culture Fix, and owner of Williamsburg Event Rentals.

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