|Bellamy Bridge near Marianna, Florida|
Located at 4057 Highway 162, Marianna, Florida (between Greenwood and US 231), the one-half mile walking trail provides access to Jackson County's historic Bellamy Bridge. The old steel-frame span across the Chipola River turns 100 years old this year and is the focal point for one of Florida's best known ghost stories.
As of yesterday, the effort to raise $7,500 to fund new footbridges along the trail has reached its goal.
|Bellamy Bridge Heritage Trail|
The use of "bed tax" funding on the boardwalks also received unanimous approval from the Jackson County Tourist Development Council and matches $2,500 raised locally through donations from citizens and businesses. Most of these donations were small and reflect the wide interest the community has taken in the project.
|Flooding in 2013|
All of that will soon change. The construction of the footbridges will allow visitors a high and dry way of reaching Bellamy Bridge except during the highest of floods.
In addition, the new footbridges along with leveling work along the trail will open it for persons of all abilities by making it passable for wheelchairs, powerchairs, etc.
|"Orb" at Bellamy Bridge|
Notice how it illuminates the ground!
The Bellamy Bridge Heritage Trail was opened in 2012 as a new and free way for the public to reach the historic bridge. The former access route, via Bellamy Bridge Road, was closed by private landowners. The trail, however, approaches the bridge from the opposite side of the river, is well-marked and features a rock parking area, interpretive panels and benches for resting at key intervals.
The path also passes through one of the most beautiful natural settings in all of Florida.
To learn more about the Ghost of Bellamy Bridge, please visit www.exploresouthernhistory.com/bellamybridge.
To learn more about the Bellamy Bridge Heritage Trail, please visit www.bellamybridge.org.