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Trail Highlight: North Straight River Parkway

The North Straight River Parkway in Owatonna held its grand opening earlier this month. Donor families, past and present city staff, elected officials and trail lovers all gathered to celebrate the completion of almost two miles of trail along side of and crossing over the beautiful Straight River. The Parkway contains the Lange Woods Trail and Wildung/Ihlenfeld Trail and connects the Buxton Trail to the 26th Street Trail.

Planning began in 2005 with city staff and the families who donated the land. In 2014, the city was awarded a federal Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) Grant for 2017 construction. In 2017, the city was awarded a Minnesota DNR Local Trail Connections Grant. Together, these funded nearly all construction costs. In addition, the Statewide Health Improvement Plan – Steele & Dodge Counties donated a bike repair station and two benches along the trail for users to take a break and enjoy the beauty of nature.

For more information about trails in Owatonna, contact Parks and Recreation at 507-444-2467 or

Information and photos provided by Mary Jo Knudson, recreation superintendent for Owatonna Parks and Recreation.