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Published: Saturday, 10/2/2010

Jermain Park opens mountain bike trail

BLADE STAFF

The event actually begins an hour earlier at Jermain with a cyclocross demonstration by the Maumee Valley Wheelmen cycling club. At 12:30 p.m., an open ride for all ages will be held, and at 1:30, time trials start. All participants must wear a helmet. There is a $2 donation to enter the time trials. Prizes will be awarded later.

Tim Burns, Toledo's manager of parks and forestry, said the 3.28-mile dirt trail was cleared by volunteers and cost the city nothing. "More than 45 volunteers donated more than 500 hours," he said. "The closest trail to anything like this is in Van Buren, [Ohio]. To have something like this in our backyard is a real prize."

Mr. Burns said the volunteers, organized in a group called Toledo Free Ride, hacked and cut the trail using chain saws, shovels, rakes, hoes, and machetes, but disturbed the topography as little as possible so bike riders would have natural terrain.

The trail contains tight and twisting turns, and climbs, and goes under the Ottawa River Bridge on Monroe Street at South Cove Boulevard, he said.

He predicted the trail would be one of the most heavily used amenities in Toledo's parks.



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