The Department of Natural Resources and Environment today announced that due to a tremendous amount of private contributions and donations, the Algonquin, Anderson Lake, Canada Lakes, Pine Baron, and Wildwood Hills pathways will be groomed for cross-country ski use this season.
“Donations began coming in from local enthusiasts, businesses, and organizations once they found out that grooming was being suspended due to budget cuts. These trails will be groomed by DNRE employees on a weekly basis depending on snow conditions,” said Mark Mandenberg, DNRE trails program technical designer.
The Sault Ste. Marie Chamber of Commerce served as a catalyst in a community effort to groom the Algonquin Pathway, Mandenberg noted.
Their effort has resulted in $1,500 along with a pledge of additional money when needed. Local citizens have pledged $300 of support for Anderson Lake Pathway, and are optimistic about their efforts to raise additional funds. Canada Lakes Pathway, south east of Newberry, received an initial deposit of $1, 000 from the local community. They are organizing to collect additional funds so that grooming may be extended beyond the initial four or five weeks. The Otsego County Parks and Recreation is fronting $2,000 to begin grooming of the Pine Baron Pathway. The Indian River Chamber of Commerce has collected $855 in donations to groom the Wildwood Hills Pathway.
For more information on the state forest cross-country skiing program, please contact Mark Mandenberg, DNRE Trails Program technical designer, at 517 335 3037. Information regarding other trail and pathway opportunities may be found on the DNRE Web site at www.michigan.gov/dnre, under Outdoor Recreation.