Folsom celebrated the completion of the second phase of the Johnny Cash Trail on October 14, 2017 with a day of festivities that included a Grand Opening Ceremony, community bike ride, fun run, and a private fundraiser dinner on the newly constructed Robbers’ Ravine Bridge.
Cindy Cash, daughter of Johnny Cash, cut the ribbon to signify the opening of the trail. She spoke emotionally about how humble and honored her father would be to see the turnout for the events.
“If my dad could see all of you people here, 14 years after he died, he would say, ‘Why me? Why did everyone do this for me?’ ” - Cindy Cash.
“I wouldn’t miss this for anything. This is very special to my heart,” said Cash. “My whole family did want to be here and would have been here if they could because this means a lot. And I know if dad were here he would be extremely overwhelmed and grateful. I know I am.”
Over 600 runners/ walkers registered for the race, and an additional 150 cyclists turned up to be the first to “bike the line” along the newly completed trail. Local musicians Manzanita played country and Cash songs for the crowd during a festival that lasted until 12:30 PM.
In the evening, a private bridge dinner was held on the Robbers’ Ravine Bridge to raise funds for the art installation.
Race participants run over the newly constructed Robbers’ Ravine Bridge on opening day of the Johnny Cash Trail. Photo courtesy of Jaclyn Schmidt.
Bringing the Art to the Johnny Cash Trail
Now that the trail infrastructure is in place, a 2.5-mile long multi-use, Class I bike trail, the City of Folsom is turning its attention to bringing the artwork to the trail.
In early 2013, Cindy Cash joined an enthusiastic Art Selection Panel in a national call for professional artists with the talent and vision to honor the connection between Folsom and Johnny Cash. Thirty-two artists and their teams from all over the US heeded the call, eagerly submitting their designs and ideas.
Cindy and the rest of the Art Selection Panel were unanimous in their decision. Two artists and their teams consistently ranked highest in their evaluations. One of these artists, Adan Romo of Romo Studios, LLC, was found right here in Folsom’s backyard.
Seven of the eight art works for the trail are Romo’s designs.
The first of Romo’s works, Cash’s Pick, is a 7-foot tall guitar pick emblazoned with Johnny Cash’s signature that will be installed in two locations to mark the beginning and end of the trail.
The City of Folsom’s current fundraising efforts are to bring Cash’s Picks to the trail. The rest of Romo’s works will follow.
5 Ways to Support the Johnny Cash Trail Project in Folsom
Want to be a part of the Johnny Cash Trail in Folsom? Here are five ways to show your support and help bring this project to life.
The second artist selected by Cash and the Art Selection Panel is bringing the largest piece of art to the trail. The monumental piece, Man in Black, is a 40-foot tall sculpture of Cash that will sit atop a 10-foot granite rock base and will be the centerpiece for the Johnny Cash Legacy Park, which will be located at the corner of Folsom Lake Crossing and E. Natoma Street. Man in Black was designed by artist Gary Tillery of the Fine Art Studio of Rotblatt-Amrany.
While fundraising efforts continue, trail visitors can see where these larger-than-life, world-class art pieces will eventually be placed. The City has placed markers along the trail indicating where each future art piece will be installed.
Folsom has embraced this project honoring the legacy of Johnny Cash in the community. The Donor Wall along the trail is filling up quickly with the names of community members and organizations who want to be a part of the project. The Johnny Cash Trail is all over the news - locally and nationally. The Grand Opening celebration was a hit. It’s evident that Folsom loves Cash, and the community is crazy about the Johnny Cash Trail.