POCATELLO, Idaho - The Portneuf Greenway Foundation held its annual Riverfest fundraiser Saturday, and while things may look the same, the organization said it has made some changes it hopes will benefit all users of the Greenway trails system.
The Greenway has made some changes recently when it comes to leadership, including letting the executive director go. Now the organization said it prides itself on being entirely volunteer-run.
The Greenway board said it hopes changes like that, among others, will bring more success to linking all the trails in Pocatello to complete the Greenway.
"We have plans to go through Chubbuck, up to the Wellness Complex in the Highland area, through the Highland area, and down through ISU and connect it as a big triangle," said Rory Erchul, president of the Greenway board.
Erchul said they want to move forward with a comprehensive plan to complete the Greenway in five years. He said there have been issues in the past, including discussion of eminent domain, but he said not holding onto past issues will be the best way to move forward.
"We want to work with people and be great community stewards," he said. "I think there's ways to get this accomplished without that whole issue."
Erchul said building a Greenway trail costs about $100,000 a mile. He said with that kind of expense, the Riverfest fundraiser is vital to completing the Greenway, but Erchul also said the level of success for completing the Greenway is based on community partnerships.
He said he's grateful for the cities of Pocatello and Chubbuck for standing behind the Greenway, along with a lot of local businesses, including Pocatello Nissan Kia, Galaxy Computers and Ed Snell's Pharmacy.
"What you're leaving (Riverfest) with is supporting a good cause," said Chris Russell, owner of Pocatello Nissan Kia. Russell donated a Kia Rondo as a top prize for the Riverfest raffle.
Erchul also says they are excited the money raised at Riverfest will go entirely to trail-building, without any administrative costs like in the past.