Grand Opening of KK River Bike Trail
Despite rainy weather, Mayor Barrett and a host of politicians celebrated the new bike trail.
An ominous sky dark with rain clouds was overhead, but there was still a fine turnout of more than 100 people, many of whom arrived by bike, for Saturday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony to open the expanded Kinnickinnic River Trail.
Due to the threatening elements, the ceremony was moved to an area below the I-43 Freeway bridge, which added an ironic element to the speeches: the rumble of cars rolling overhead droned on as we heard salute after salute to the joys of bicycling. Yet somehow the atmosphere remained quite festive.
City Engineer Jeff Polenske was the master of ceremonies, and speakers included Mayor Tom Barrett, Ald. Jose Perez, Ald. Tony Zielinski, Democratic state representatives Josh Zepnick and JoCasta Zamarripa, Bike Federation communications director (and Urban Milwaukee columnist) Dave Schlabowske, and Mary Beth Driscoll, whose environmental group Groundwork Milwaukee has done work to remove invasive plants from along the KK River.
After the speeches, Barrett wielded an oversized, cartoon-like scissors, enlisted the help of an eager young boy to help cut the ribbon and the trail was officially open. By then the rain was coming down in buckets and those bicyclists who’d packed rain gear were rewarded for their planning.