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$161,000 in Foundation grants help complete trail loop

Anyone who needed confirmation that Neenah and Menasha had achieved their goal of creating a recreation trail around Little Lake Butte des Morts got it from a crowd that decided to “Cut and Run.”

That was the combination ribbon cutting and 5K fun run that marked the official opening of the Loop the Little Lake trail June 23. About 300 people registered for the run/walk on the 5K trail that loops around the south half of Little Lake Butte de Morts and another 300 came as spectators.

Linking the two cities by a walking and bicycling trail required the construction of two pedestrian bridges over canals that are part of the Fox River in Neenah and Menasha, as part of the $3.5 million cost of the trail. Thirteen Community Foundation funds awarded a total of $161,000 in grants for the project, including a lead gift from the Frank C. Shattuck Community Fund within the Community Foundation.

Total funding for the project included of $1.1 million in private funds raised by Future Neenah, $325,000 from Neenah, $325,000 from Menasha and $1.75 million from a matching state grant.

Wisconsin Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett was there to preside over the ceremony at Neenah’s Arrowhead Park, along with Neenah Mayor Dean Kaufert and Menasha Mayor Don Merkes.  Cathie Tierney, Community First Credit Union President and board chair for the Community Foundation, cut the ribbon to dedicate the trail. The credit union was a major sponsor.

State Tourism Sec. Stephanie Klett Loop the Lake 5K Legislators at Loop the Lake Loop the Lake foam finish Loop the Lake Ribbon Cutting Loop the Lake Neenah trailhead
State legislators Mike Rohrkaste, Roger Roth and Amanda Stuck join the fun.

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