Ballpark to Ballpark Trail – Shelby County Iowa
Shelby County Trails was formed in 2012 and has a governing committee with members representing 10 communities in Shelby County Iowa. Their mission is to promote building of trails to connect
communities in Shelby County.Their first major project is the Ballpark to Ballpark Trail which will run north/south between Panama and
Portsmouth, Iowa. The name Ballpark to Ballpark Trail comes from the great baseball traditions of these
communities. These rural communities have sponsored baseball teams for many, many years. Teams for young elementary students all the way to semi-pro town teams.
This trail is truly a “grass-roots” efforts. Nearly all funding has come from the local community. Phase I
has been completed with no government funding. There have been a handful of small grants from
private foundations; the remainder of funding has come from local efforts accomplished through various
fundraisers including charity auctions, community breakfasts and direct contributions from community
members. A local trucking company, Panama Transfer, has matched many contributions dollar for dollar.
The trail will start at the north end of Panama in Whispering Pines Park – just across State Highway 191
from the Panama ballpark. The eventual south end will be just past the Portsmouth Iowa ballpark about
7 miles away. Phase I was completed this Fall. It includes a ½ mile of on street bike route through the town of Panama. Plus a section of off street trail extending a ½ mile to the south ending at County Road F32. This off street section running adjacent to State Highway 191.
Future construction will extend the off street trail another 6 miles to Portsmouth. This section will also
run adjacent to State Highway 191. The ultimate goal is to extend the trail to Pottawattamie County
where it will connect to trails in Council Bluffs and Omaha plus the Wabash Trace Nature Trail.