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Otter Tail County seeks $1.8M in state legacy funds for Perham to Pelican trail

Trail
The Perham to Pelican Rapids Regional Trail will run alongside this narrow section of Highway 34, requiring acres of fill. (Focus file photo)

Otter Tail County is seeking state legacy funds for a section of the Perham to Pelican Rapids Regional Trail. A grant request of $1.8 million is in the works, with county officials requesting funds through the Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission.

The aforementioned funds would be used for the Silent Lake section of the Perham to Pelican Rapids trail. Other sections are west, east and McDonald.

“The completion of the Silent Lake segment will create new and expanded park and trail opportunities by expanding access to Maplewood State Park and eventually connecting the Heartland and Central Lakes Trails,” points out Nick Leonard, Otter Tail County’s communications and external relations director.

Minnesota’s Legacy Amendment, starting in 2009, derives funding from a three-eighths of 1% sales tax. Some of this money, 14.25%, is earmarked for parks and trails.

“We as county residents, through our tax dollars going to the Legacy Fund, have provided funds for trail projects in other parts of the state. Now it’s our turn to receive some of those tax dollars for the Pelican Rapids to Perham trail,” said Doug Huebsch, county board chairman from Perham.

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The regional trail is a 10-foot wide, 32-mile long path that will bridge Perham and Pelican Rapids through Maplewood State Park. The project is broken up into four segments: West, Silent Lake, McDonald and East. Further in the future, the trail will be linked to the Heartland Trail and the Central Lakes Trail.

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