by Dennis Dalman
Sartell’s Public Works Department will join a partnership to give a boost to the Sartell Nordic Ski Club for trail grooming.
The City Council approved the partnership at its Sept. 23 meeting, which was attended by many parents of ski-club participants.
The Sartell-Cathedral Nordic Ski Team won the state championship in February this year at Biwabik, beating back Forest Lake for the top trophy.
The ski club boosters asked the council if its public works department would be willing to groom the 1-kilometer ski trail that runs through the wooded area near the old Sartell High School.
Sartell Public Works Director John Kothenbeutel said the department does have a trail groomer but that he could not guarantee workers would have time to keep the trail groomed on a regular basis, especially when they are busy with snow removal tasks and plowing at heavy snow times.
Earlier, the ski club met with school officials, and it was agreed the school district would help with work on the trail, including snow-making. The ski club succeeded in raising $20,000 for trail maintenance and work, including hook-ups for electricity and water.
The council agreed unanimously to give the partnership a try for one year, with grooming done whenever possible. After a year, the partnership will be reviewed, the council agreed.