Meet Lah Thao. Lah Thao is a teacher affiliated with the Enrich Excel Achieve Learning Academy, http://eea.wausauschools.org/school_information, a public charter school located on the campus of Wausau East High School in Wausau. The school is for students in grades 6-12 and geared to teach students who do not fit in traditional public school classroom settings.
Every year for the past ten years, Lah has been leading a group of students on a full trail ride on the Mountain-Bay State Trail from Weston to Green Bay (Howard). He has a support crew that set up “pit stops” along the way along with adult volunteers who ride as chaperones with the students. The kids train for the rides by cycling in physical education classes. The whole trip is one way with the kids being bussed back. The students stop for lunch at Shawano, and have a photo-op and brunch at Lambeau Field.
For many of these students, this is the ride of their young lives. It is quite an accomplishment for them to do all 83 miles. The sites that they see on a ride like this will be with them for a long time. Preparing for a full trail ride for anyone including these students at the Enrich Excel Achieve Learning Academy is about setting goals.
Rail-trails are a great tool for training young people on how to set goals and to develop the desire and determination to achieve them. What a great way for kids to get out and enjoy nature while doing just that.