Bookmark this page, or click the subscribe link below to add our news feed to your favorite RSS reader (ie. to receive notifications of future posts.

CANCELLED - 2017 Trails Through Time Race

posted Jul 5, 2017, 8:57 AM by Lucas Hardbarger   [ updated Jul 15, 2017, 1:42 PM ]

The Friends of Blackhand Gorge are sad to announce that this year's Trails Through Time race has been CANCELLED

This was a tough decision due to the popularity of the race and the amount of attention and money it has raised for the preserve over the years. However, the amount of effort it takes to put the race on is pretty big. Also, we've only had a handful of registrations, and only a few sponsors for this years's event. 

Please visit our Facebook page or email if you have any questions or comments.

Thank you,

The Friends of Blackhand Gorge

Work Day - Saturday, April 15th 2017 @ 9am

posted Apr 11, 2017, 8:45 PM by Lucas Hardbarger

Calling all friends! The Friends of Blackhand Gorge are hosting a work day at the cabin near the Toboso entrance. Our goal will be to pick up trash around the nature preserve and clear trails of debris. Trash bags will be provided, but it is recommended that you bring your own gloves. We plan to from 9am - 12pm (3 hours). If you are interested, simply show up at the preserve before 9am on Saturday morning and we will get started. 

Hope to see you there!

Licking Valley Museum and Learning Center Grand Opening Event

posted Apr 18, 2016, 11:23 AM by Lucas Hardbarger

The Licking Valley Heritage Society is excited to announce the grand opening of a multi-year project to open a museum here in the Licking Valley area.

The details can be found on our Facebook page:

This is destined to be a historical event you are not going to want to miss!

Licking Valley Museum and Learning Center Grand Opening

2016 Trails Through Time Race

posted Apr 11, 2016, 3:32 AM by Lucas Hardbarger

Mark your calendars! The Friends of Blackhand Gorge are hosting the 5th annual Trails Through Time race on Saturday, August 27th, 2016.

Bike Path is Now Open!

posted Jul 10, 2015, 6:17 PM by Lucas Hardbarger

Months after Blackhand Gorge got a new Bike Path, Mother Nature decided to give way near the newly paved path. The earth slipped and caused a major gash in the beautiful bike path. The cost to repair the bike path with new and stable earth is very expensive. As a result, ODNR had to temporarily block off the bike path and prevent the public from doing the full 4.26 mile path. 

A few weeks ago, ODNR brought in a bulldozer and provided the public with a temporary patch to the problem by removing the debris and leveling the earth again. This isn't a permanent fix to the problem, but it does open the bike path enough to allow families and groups to enjoy all of the renewed opportunities for trail use again. 

Today, July 10th, 2015, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources has announced that the Blackhand Gorge bike path is now open. A bulldozer came in and fixed the slip enough to allow the public to traverse the path from start to finish again. The gates have been removed and a sign is now in place warning the public of the temporary fix.

Thank you, ODNR for all your hard work and efforts to help keep Blackhand Gorge beautiful!!

Grand Opening of New Canoe Launch in Newark, Ohio

posted May 15, 2015, 2:03 PM by Lucas Hardbarger

The Licking Park District is happy to announce that we have completed the construction of the Canoe Launch at Riverview Preserve, and we would like you to share this special occasion with us.  Please consider joining us on Friday, May 22 at Noon for a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony and a light lunch. For those who are interested, we are also hosting a float from our new canoe launch to Brownsville Road/Rt 668.

Riverview Preserve is located on Ohio Street in South Newark, next to the Don Edwards Ball Fields.  Watch for signs off of Second Street.

Map to Riverview Preserve

Please RSVP by Wednesday, May 20, if you are able to attend by calling our office at 740.587.2535, or email Bob Williams at

When you call to RSVP, please let us know if you are able to join us on the float. The Licking River is beautiful, and we are sure you would enjoy the trip.

2015 Trails Through Time

posted Apr 20, 2015, 8:47 PM by Lucas Hardbarger

Mark your calendars! The Friends of Blackhand Gorge are hosting the 4th annual Trails Through Time race on Saturday, August 1st, 2015

2014 River Roundup

posted Aug 12, 2014, 5:35 PM by Lucas Hardbarger

The Friends of Blackhand Gorge are assisting in another River Roundup hosted by Licking County Soil and Water. 

River Round Up

This years event is scheduled for Saturday, September 6th, 2014 @ 8am

Register today! Hurry, because the first 150 volunteers get a free t-shirt. 

You can get more information by visiting the Licking County Soil and Water Conservation District website.

Registration Begins for 2014 Trail Race

posted Jul 6, 2014, 10:00 PM by Lucas Hardbarger

New Blacktop
The Friends of Blackhand Gorge are now accepting registration forms for the 2014 Trails Through Time race through Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve. Our first year had 26 runners. Last year we had over 85 runners! This year we are hoping to out do that number! 

This years race offers new blacktop as well as a few new trails on the course.

Sign up today! 

2014 Owl Prowl

posted Jun 9, 2014, 7:23 AM by Lucas Hardbarger   [ updated Jun 9, 2014, 7:36 AM ]

Join us at the historical cabin near Toboso on June 13th @ 8:30pm. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) will be hosting our first even Owl Prowl at Blackhand Gorge.

Owl Prowl

We will be doing owl calls, searching for bio-luminescent life, and introduce you to night vision optics.

1-10 of 32