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NTN Appeals to MDNR to keep Blueberry open

Thu, Nov  8, 2007 - By Susan Brian

The Noquemanon Trail Network is working hard to keep Blueberry open and groomed for this winter. To keep all silent sports enthusiasts in the loop the NTN has sent the following letter to the Michigan DNR to appeal to them and allow the NTN to have the ability to groom. The letter is below. If there are any questions, please contact Susan Brian, NTN Executive Director @ (906)228-6182.

The NTN needs your support, so please renew your membership today!

Bill Brondyke, Gwinn Unit Manager
Michigan Department of Natural Resources
410 W. M-35
Gwinn, MI 49841

November 6, 2007

Dear Mr. Brondyke,

The NTN has become a crucial component in the community for non-motorized trail access. The Blueberry Ridge Pathway is a critical resource to the NTN membership and the non-motorized community as a whole. We also strongly believe that Blueberry Ridge is an important component in the community’s efforts to make our area a premier destination for non-motorized enthusiasts.

Due to the loss of funding that you have received at the State level, the Blueberry Ridge Pathway stands to fall by the wayside. The NTN feels this to be of utter importance and a high priority that Blueberry Ridge is preserved. The following are some scenarios that we would pose as potential possibilities to keep Blueberry Ridge open and operational:


  1. Allow the Noquemanon Trail Network to become a concessionaire of this designated Pathway. Allow the NTN to operate and manage the trail corridor, collect user fees, put up kilometer sponsor markers as the Michigan DNR allows on the Vasa Trail and sell memberships….. all in order to keep Blueberry open and groomed for x-c skiing.
  2. Allow the NTN to find its own funding sources through memberships, km sponsor markers along the trail corridor. With this funding the NTN would “voluntarily” groom Blueberry, plow the parking lots and keep the lights on. The NTN would also require the ability to collect donations out of the pay-pipes and change the existing signage. This scenario would also depend on how much money we could raise. Some options may be to only plow one parking lot to cut expenses, only have the lights on during the weekends and only groom once a week.

The NTN does not have the ability to groom the Blueberry Ridge trails without being able to collect donations. We have limited resources and need funding in order to help keep Blueberry open. We know that the NTN is the organization in our community to help with the operation of Blueberry Ridge. The NTN will ensure Blueberry’s long term viability and provide Marquette area residents with a premiere recreational resource as they are accustomed to. We are prepared to begin either of these scenarios immediately if you allow us the possibility.

We look forward to your response. Please contact Susan Brian, NTN Executive Director at (906)228-6182 or e-mail: if you have any questions.

Thank you for your time.

Susan Brian, Executive Director
Noquemanon Trail Network

Cc: Tom Casperson, Steve Lindbergh, Rebecca Humphries

Noquemanon Trail Network
PO Box 746
Marquette, MI 49855