Kenosha County Parks and other partners are inviting the public to a ribbon-cutting ceremony this Friday, June 2, for the new multiuse and purpose-built mountain bike trail network within Petrifying Springs Park and the University of Wisconsin-Parkside campus.
The ceremony will take place at 5:30 p.m. near the Petrifying Springs Park parking lot on Highway JR, adjacent to the UW-Parkside campus.
Following the ribbon-cutting festivities, family activities will be available near the Petrifying Springs Biergarten. These include a mountain bike fun ride led by the Kenosha Area Mountain Bike Association (KAMBA) and a fun run organized by the Kenosha Running Club.
Those organizations were involved in a multiyear effort to restore and reconfigure the trails that now make up an organized network in the park and the Parkside campus, said Kenosha County Executive Samantha Kerkman.
“We’re excited to celebrate this partnership with the whole community,” Kerkman said. “Working together with UW-Parkside, KAMBA and the Kenosha Running Club, we’ve been able to create this new amenity that will remain for many years to come.”
Parkside Chancellor Deborah Ford and Vice Chancellor of Finance & Administration Scott Menke will join Kerkman and other dignitaries at the ribbon cutting.
“We are excited the trails are opening and providing yet another recreational opportunity for our community,” Menke said. “UW-Parkside was founded by the community for the community, and we are pleased to be able to partner with Kenosha County to expand access to and use of the natural areas surrounding our campus in an environmentally responsible way.”
The county and UW-Parkside in 2019 signed off on a 50-year agreement in which the county is aiding in the management of 139 acres of university-owned land that borders Petrifying Springs Park, with the two parties working together on initiatives to improve stormwater and natural resource management. As part of the agreement, the county is to work with community partners to develop public access to sustainable mountain bike and multiuse recreational trails, which led to the development of the new trail network.
KAMBA Board President Steve Janiak said his organization is grateful to partner with the county and UW-Parkside in developing a sanctioned mountain bike trail system.
“For many of us, this has been a labor of love for the last few years, and we are really excited to offer a better trail system to Kenosha residents,” Janiak said. “We also feel that these improved trails at Pets will be another way to attract visitors to Kenosha from surrounding areas. Mountain biking has proven to provide a positive economic impact in many communities when fun, proper, and sustainable trails are built.”
Likewise, Kenosha Running Club Board member Lisa Byron the club is pleased to join in the opening of the trails — which is a reopening for some that were used unofficially over the years.
“Many of our members have been running these trails for years, and some for decades,” Byron said. “We want to invite everyone of all paces to join us on Friday for a group run after the ribbon cutting. As a club, we are excited for another opportunity to promote and expand running and fitness in our community.”
Other activities at Friday’s event will include vendor booths, giveaways, bike games offered by Southeastern Lakes Scholastic Mountain Biking, a mobile bike repair station courtesy of Total Cyclery, and live music.
A map of the UW-Parkside and Petrifying Springs Park trail network is available at ow.ly/17Vt50On72s.