July 28, 2015
SHIOCTON, Wis. - The grand opening of a new state recreational trail -- the Newton Blackmour State Trail -- will be celebrated with a public event beginning at 1 p.m. on Aug. 2, at Lake Park in Shiocton. While nine miles of the trail were already open to the public, this event is to celebrate 14 additional miles recently developed.
The Newton Blackmour State Trail crosses the Wolf River on an abandoned railroad trestle.
The 23-mile trail connects the cities of New London and Seymour, via the villages of Black Creek and Shiocton. East of Seymour, it links to the Duck Creek trail, which extends into Brown County and is anticipated to eventually connect to Pamperin Park in Green Bay.
"At long last, this beautiful trail is open to everyone", Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson said. "Whatever you enjoy, from cycling to horseback riding, snowmobiling or just taking a walk, this trail provides a perfect avenue. The Highway and the Parks Departments have done some great work on this"
The Newton Blackmour State Trail becomes Wisconsin's thirty-seventh state rail trail, and the twenty-fourth that is cooperatively managed with counties and other municipalities.
"We're very proud of our State Trails, and especially the cooperative trails developed and operated by county partners. We're excited that Outagamie County is joining in the fun of celebrating 50 years," says Brigit Brown, state trails coordinator for the Department of Natural Resources Bureau of Parks and Recreation.
The event coincides with the 50th anniversary of Wisconsin rail trails. Wisconsin became the first state to convert an abandoned railroad corridor into a recreational trail - the Elroy-Sparta State Trail in 1965. The "rails to trails" movement has since spread across the state, nation and the world.
Officials from Outagamie County, DNR, the cities of Seymour and New London, along with the Villages of Black Creek and Shiocton, will host the event, which will also include representatives from Fox Cities Greenways, Inc., the Fox Cities Cycling Association and the Appleton Bicycle Shop. Free brats and hot dogs will be available while they last. Cycling safety instructions will be provided. The program will include bicycle and bike gear giveaways.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Larry Abitz, Office of the Outagamie County Executive, 920-832-1684 or Brigit Brown, Wisconsin DNR, 608-266-2183