Thank you for your support, your benefit auction donations,
and for coming out  for the River Walk Fund Raiser!

held Thursday, September 12, 2013
on the Porch at Doyle's Cedar Hill in Murphy
We are pleased to report over $5k was raised for the River Walk projects,
and we look forward to doing it again in 2014!


Hit the beautifully scenic Murphy River Walk at Konehete Park or the McClelland Street
or the Old L&N Depot trail heads in town, and enjoy!
Canoe and kayak put-ins can be found on Payne Street and Hiwassee Street
just beyond the River Walk trail.

The approximate 3 miles of trail surfaces start at the far end of Konehete Park
along the Valley River, and end at the Old L&N Depot by the Hiwassee River bridge.


View of the old Southern RR trestle
bridge on the Valley River
[photo courtesy of Nic Oliver]

Click here for the
River Walk Map

More about the
River Walk Project

brochures available at
the Wellness Center -
Konehete Park, and the
Cherokee County
Welcome Center
in Murphy


Shown above are walkers waving from overlook of the Great Leech Place of Cherokee Indian legend
to paddlers in the river below
[photo courtesy of Nic Oliver]

The project master plan has been completed from Konehete Park all the way to the Old L&N Depot
in town. The approximate 2 mile walking trail (or 4 miles round trip, however you wish to take it)
follows the Hiwassee River and the Valley River, which meet to form the back waters
of Lake Hiwassee and surround the historic town center of Murphy, the Cherokee County seat.

As the seasons change, and as the river and lake waters rise and recede, the River Walk & Canoe Trails
tend to change character as well. You'll find it a beautiful connection with native plant life, bird and fish species,
and the waters of two rivers meeting to form a lake. The natural wonders are breathtaking any time of year.

Walking Trail Heads: Konehete Park/Hiwassee Valley Wellness Center, McClelland Street and Old L&N Depot
Canoe Put-Ins: Vance Street and Hiwassee Street


Project Manager
Johnny Strawn

If you run into Johnny Strawn
working on the River Walk
trail, just say thank you to an
extraordinary volunteer! Johnny
has been working with the
project since 2003, and took
over as project manager in
May 2010.


Contact the
River Walk Project Manager
to keep posted on volunteer
and notices of
project work days.


A Footbridge Over the River [photo courtesy of Nic Oliver]

River Walk Happenings:

Watch for the continued progress, as in addition to ongoing trail maintenance and enhancement activities
the project team has been focused on the following projects:

  • Valley River Loop for Observation Deck/Outdoor Classroom- clean up of this area just
    below the Health Department is planned for late 2013, making way for a new trail loop on the
    Valley River with a larger scale observation deck/outdoor classroom in 2014.  Thanks to the Dub and Murray Martin
    Cherokee and Clay County Trust for the start up grant in 2013 for this project!

  • Confluence Loop & Hiwassee River Overlook Construction - with the basic trail now completed,
    this extra loop at the convergence of the Valley and Hiwassee rivers forming Lake Hiwassee is one of the most
    beautiful scenic areas on the trail.  Grants were awarded by the Dub and Murray Martin
    Cherokee and Clay County Trust for these 2012-2013 projects- thank you!

  • Interpretive Signage Stations - The River Walk now features
    both heritage and ecological interpretive stations along the trail. A grant was awarded in 2011 by
    the OEO Small Growing Opportunities grant program for the project, and a prior grant
    from the Cherokee Heritage Foundation for the Leech Place overlook signage- thank you!

  • River Walk Map Brochure - with the first 5,000 gobbled up, funds were secured for a
    trail map brochure update and reprint in 2012. The latest brochure/maps can be found here on line (top left links),
    or in hard copy at the Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce & Welcome Center on the 4-lane, or at
    the Hiwassee Valley Pool & Wellness Center at Konehete Park, in Murphy.


Thank You
Edwin Manchester

(pictured with wife Esther)
River Walk Project Manager

The community has the late
Edwin Manchester's leadership
and inspired efforts to thank for
bringing the Murphy River Walk
to a beautiful reality.

Edwin passed away in August 2010,
and left us with a
legacy of loving and giving
and caring as only an angel on this
earth could do. We figure
he'll keep heaven busy with
more than a few projects.



Our logo was designed by Niki Kordus with Cherokee County's heritage in mind.


Walkers at the Konehete Park section of the River Walk

Project Background

Initiated as a multi-phase master plan concept in July of 2002, the Murphy River Walk project was formally
endorsed by the Mayor & Town Council of Murphy, and by the Cherokee County Board of Commissioners,
in January 2003. Phase 1 opened in the fall of 2003 at Konehete Park, and a master plan for its future phases
was completed by the fall of 2004. Step by step, the River Walk was completed all the way in to the
Old L&N Depot on Railroad Street at the Hiwassee Street river bridge in 2010.

Enhancement and improvement activities continue on with the trail surfaces, native landscaping
and interpretive markers along the way. The approximate 2-mile trail carries the potential of far reaching benefits
to the community- health and recreational enhancements to Konehete Park and the Wellness center facility,
economic renewal stimulus for the historic town center, eco and heritage tourism, environmental conservation,
cultural and historic preservation, native plant and wildlife education, and more.

Student Projects - Earth Day on the River Walk [photo collage courtesy of Phil Mattox]

Fund-raising for future maintenance & construction activities continues.
You can help.

Your tax deductible contribution is gratefully accepted at any time, and in any amount, payable to:

River Walk
c/o Barbara Vicknair, Treasurer
16 Boulevard Street
Murphy NC 28906