Lakeside, Oregon, Gets Economic Boost From ATV Enthusiasts

New sand dune ATV route provides access to local businesses.

A new trail provides dune access to local businesses in the town of Lakeside, Oregon.Jeff Henson

It was the dream of city council member Ken Ireland to link his small town of Lakeside to the nearby famous Oregon coastal sand dunes. Unfortunately, Ireland passed away before his dream could take full reality. Another local, Shirlee Benell, took on the project and formed the Lakeside Riders. The addition of this group assisted in the finishing of Ireland’s dream.

The ATV route was approved in 2020, linking Lakeside to the sand dunes. ATV riders can park in Lakeside and make their way to the dunes for a day of ATV activities. The local businesses of Lakeside benefit from ATV riders who want to enjoy an early breakfast and coffee before a busy day on the dunes. Another popular option is for tired riders to return for dinner and a drink at one of the local restaurants and bars. This tourist-type activity gives Lakeside’s economy a vast boost for a town that doesn’t have much of a tax base.

Lakeside’s business owners have seen the growth in the town and embraced the new addition of the 2-mile route. The route is maintained by volunteers and fellow ATV enthusiasts. The future looks very bright for Lakeside and ATV riders who love this new access to the famous Oregon sand dunes.

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