It’s hard to believe the eighth annual Rivers, Trails & Ales Festival is almost upon us! Featuring Marietta’s most spectacular outdoor activities, the Rivers, Trails & Ales Festival (aka RTA Fest) is a grass-roots outdoor enthusiast festival that appeals to visitors and locals alike. Dreamed up by a few locals eager to share the Mid-Ohio Valley’s wealth of natural resources with the rest of the world, RTA Fest has become a staple end-of-summer festival that truly has something for everyone.
“RTA Fest is an opportunity for us to celebrate and share all of the outdoor activities as well as our beautiful, walkable historic downtown that we get to enjoy throughout the year,” said Hallie Taylor, Emeritus Director and one of the festival’s three founders. ” It brings a whole lot of friendly people to the area for the weekend to bike, paddle, eat, drink, and shop, and it also helps put Marietta on the map as an outdoor destination.”Thanks to the efforts of individuals like Taylor and her business partner Ryan Smith, and groups like the River Valley Mountain Bike Association, Marietta has been steadily growing in its reputation as Ohio’s number one destination for outdoor adventure. Home to more than 270 miles of off-road trails, two rivers, and Ohio’s only National Forest, the Mid-Ohio Valley boasts an abundance of natural resources.
RTA Fest weekend highlights all of the above, featuring premium road cycling, sick mountain biking, a myriad of paddling events, and plenty of local, craft beer. This year’s festival expands upon last year’s schedule, adding new RTA yoga events, more activities for the kiddos, and a brand new outdoor Beer Fest, featuring thirteen regional breweries. Festivities kick off Thursday night with a jam session at Gun Lock Park followed by the kick-off party at the Marietta Brewing Company and live music at The Adelphia. (Check out the RTA Fest website for the full schedule!)