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IRON COUNTY - The Iron County Outdoor Recreation Enthusiasts or ICORE and the Mercer town park board are getting close to reaching the goal of connecting separate bike trails in Iron and Vilas counties. Brenda Nelson, who is spearheading the joint effort. Nelson says the Wisconsin Department of Transportation has funded the feasibility study for the project and engineers working on that study are also working with the Wisconsin DNR. The study will identify the best options for routes and how much it would cost. Nelson says the partnership is submitting grants for each step of the process, and since some can only be submitted for every other year, the project may take six years to finish. The result would be a 23-mile loop connecting Mercer, Winchester and Manitowish Waters. There will be a public input event August 4th in Carow Park, with live music, prizes, food and beverages and representatives from the National Bike Federation and the engineers who did the feasibility study will be there to answer questions.

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