Contact(s): Calvin Kunkle, DNR park ranger, Menomonie, 715-232-1242; Ed Culhane, DNR communications, Eau Claire, 715-781-1683
MENOMONIE - Local supporters of Hoffman Hills State Recreation Area have generously donated $14,500 to the state Department of Natural Resources for the purchase of a John Deere Gator that can easily crawl across the park's diverse landscape.
The donation was made possible by the Community Foundation of Dunn County - Hoffman Hills Fund, the Menomonie Optimist Club, and the Friends of the Red Cedar State Trail and Hoffman Hills.
The gator will support a wide range of projects including an oak savanna restoration already started by the Optimist Club. It will be used to repair hiking and ski trails and to provide better trail grooming for winter skiers.
The nimble gator will also assist with public safety and can be used, if necessary, to assist a skier or hiker who might need medical attention.
The local community has supported many projects at Hoffman that provide valuable recreational opportunities for visitors. These include the picnic shelter, trail signs and the popular 60-foot observation tower that crowns one of the highest points in Dunn County, offering spectacular views of the surrounding countryside with its high-ridged valleys. To learn more, go to the DNR homepage and search for "Hoffman Hills."