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St. Germain Chamber of Commerce dedicates $70,000 to local trails

St. Germain trails
St. Germain Chamber of Commerce
The St. Germain Non-Motorized Trail committee received $15,000 from the chamber of commerce to maintain local trails.

The St. Germain Chamber of Commerce has dedicated $70,000 of American Rescue Plan Act funds to maintaining local trails. The money is divided between the St. Germain ATV club, the Bo-Boen Snowmobile club and the St. Germain non-motorized trail committee.

From snowmobiling to mountain biking, trails in St. Germain are increasingly popular places to be.

“The use of our trails has grown exponentially the last two to three years,” says Gary Penner, president of St. Germain’s ATV Club.

With increased use comes increased maintenance.

To afford that cost, the St. Germain Chamber of Commerce has awarded three local trail organizations a total of $70,000 from American Rescue Plan Act funds.

With its share, the ATV club will purchase a tractor and trail grooming equipment.

St. Germain’s non-motorized trail committee will make a similar investment.

Jimmy Vogel, who helps to maintain those trails, says the committee will purchase winter grooming equipment for the area’s new mountain biking trails.

“So we can groom those trails for winter fat tire biking,” he says.

Building and maintaining these trails is a boon to the local economy.

“A lot of the trails go past restaurants and other types of entertainment establishments,” Penner says. “Our hotels are full during the summertime. If you go past our hotels, the parking lots are packed with trailers and ATVs.”

And that’s not all.

As Jimmy Vogel says, St. Germain’s trails are also a way to spread joy through the community.

“I like being in the parking lot and doing something, and hearing ‘oh, the trails are awesome,’ or how great they had of a time,” Vogel says. “I just chuckle and laugh because that’s what I like. I like seeing the people enjoy it.”

Erin Gottsacker worked at WXPR as a Morning Edition host and reporter from December 2020 to January 2023. During her time at the station, Erin reported on the issues that matter most in the Northwoods.
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