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Home Michigan MI Blogs Cadillac Area Visitors Bureau Launches ORV Initiative

Cadillac Area Visitors Bureau Launches ORV Initiative

Grant supports efforts to brand Wexford County as ORV paradise

By Kathy Gibbons

Off-road vehicle (ORV) riding has always been big in Michigan, which boasts an abundance of wide-open spaces and ORV trails.

The sport’s popularity has only exploded since the pandemic began as the public searched for outdoor fun. So it couldn’t be a better time for the Cadillac Area Visitors Bureau (CAVB) to receive a $48,000 USDA grant that will help promote the area as a premier destination for off-road vehicle recreation.

The CAVB is earmarking another $52,000 to bring the project total to $100,000. All of the money will support a Cadillac Area ORV Initiative showcasing Wexford County as a year-round ORV destination and its connections to a huge trail system beyond the region. The initiative will provide wayfinding, mapping, and marketing to attract ORV users to the region while at the same time promoting responsible recreation practices.

“With this grant funding from USDA Rural Development, we are able to leverage additional funds to support the mapping and framework of the ORV network in and around Wexford County in a way that has never existed,” says Cadillac Area Visitors Bureau Executive Director Kathy Adair Morin. “Once this important groundwork has been laid, we expect to generate more opportunities to build ORV tourism in our area at a time when its popularity is reaching new heights throughout the Midwest.”

The Cadillac region offers 120 miles of off-road vehicle trails plus 10 ORV trail systems. In addition, licensed ORVs are allowed to use the right-of-way of all Wexford County roads plus those managed by the U.S. Forest Service. There are an additional 200 miles of clear snowmobile trails.

The initiative will run in four phases, with completion slated for this summer.

“Because many ORVs can be used nearly year-round, organizing our area as a user-friendly hub will offer more opportunities for visitors to engage in this type of outdoor recreation,” Morin says. “We also have a large and growing segment of local ORV users that are excited about our plans for the new mapping and information we are currently developing.”