Ask just about any Franklin visitor or resident and they’ll tell you the bike trails and waterways are the greatest assets this region has going for it. Jeff Brunton couldn’t agree more.
Jeff grew up in the Franklin area and moved away after attending Westminster College. He didn’t exactly plan to move back here: his company brought him back to the area. Once that company was bought by a larger conglomerate, he decided to leave the corporate world. He opened a small kayak and canoe rental company, Outdoor Allegheny River Services in July 2009, and he has never looked back. Since then, the OARS has expanded its fleet of canoes and kayaks, added an inflatable stand up paddle board, and branched out into bicycle rentals and repairs.
An avid outdoorsman, Jeff said this area is the perfect place to enjoy hiking, biking and water sports and he appreciates the convenience of all three to Franklin. He loves being at the confluence of French Creek and the Allegheny River, and a short drive from Two Mile Run, Oil Creek, Clear Creek State Park and some of the most beautiful hiking in the region.
Through OARS he has met tourists from all over the country, who come to enjoy the pristine waterways in the oil region.
Jeff said the people in the Franklin community really come together to make it attractive to outsiders, with live music in the summer, and jam-packed calendar of community events. That, combined with the region’s recent push to promote life on the trails, has made Franklin the perfect place for OARS to thrive.
Jeff spends the winters hiking all over the world. He has been to New Zealand, Argentine, Chile, Vietnam, Nepal, and Thailand, just to name a few. He often takes his daughter along, and cites the low cost of living in the area as one of the main reasons he is able to pursue his travel passions.
The people, the outdoors, and the affordability make it easy for Jeff to live life to the fullest in Franklin.