Grant Ceremony Held For Gold Star Memorial Trail

(Juneau) While no ground was broken at the Hwy 26/33 trail head of the Wild Goose State Trail, a crowd still gathered Monday afternoon for the announcement of a Transportation Alternatives Program grant that will help complete Phase 2 of the Gold Star Memorial Trail. The proposed 15-mile trail extends from Theiler Park in Mayville and currently terminates at the Horicon Marsh Visitor Center with Phase 2 looking to connect the trail with the existing Wild Goose State Trail. The state grant is worth $1,092,344.

Department of Transportation Secretary Craig Thompson was on hand to announce the grant award and spoke to the long-standing relationship he and the gold star families have had in the long planning process and the long way the grant funds will go towards the completion of the overall project. 

Phase 3 of the trail will see a final connection to the city of Beaver Dam, a project that Beaver Dam Mayor Becky Glewen says will have positive effects on the area.  Glewen adds they are excited to have the trail in the Dodge County region, saying the city is already in the planning stages for a trail head in the city’s own beloved Swan Park. 

Gold Star family member and one of the visionaries behind the Gold Star Memorial Trail, Andrew Johnson, expressed the feelings of local and statewide Gold Star families. Johnson says the families meet once a year and they have been very supportive of the trail since they introduced the idea nearly eight years ago. He adds this is more than just something for Dodge County but connects a large portion of the state together.