Groundbreaking ceremonies for the first mile of the eastern section of Rock Island Trail State Park were held on January 26 in Gerald, Missouri. This is the first mile of trail funded exclusively through private and community cash, labor, equipment, and professional service donations.

The ceremony was the culmination of a year and a half of meetings and cooperation between Missouri State Parks, the Friends of Rock Island Trail State Park, the City of Gerald, Rock Island Trail East 24, dedicated State Representatives, private businesses, individuals, and foundations.

Created in June 2023, Rock Island Trail State Park is largely closed to the public until development funds allow for the construction of the remaining 144 miles. In addition to the section being developed in Gerald, 47 miles of the park is open from Windsor to Pleasant Hill, Missouri, as a spur of the Katy Trail State Park.

The master plan for Rock Island Trail State Park, which outlines trail enhancements, proposed amenities, interpretive features, and more, is available for public viewing at: