By Brian Milavitz, an East Isles Neighborhood Association board member and one of the lakes volunteer trail groomers for the Loppet Foundation

Representatives from the Loppet Foundation, the Minneapolis Park Board, and the East Isles Neighborhood Association gathered on January 6 at Lake of the Isles, after the big snow fall, to celebrate the arrival of a new snowmobile donated by the East Isles Neighborhood Association for grooming on ice ski trails and adjacent walking and biking trails.

The snowmobile replaces another that was at end of life and in dire need of replacement. Under the auspices of the Loppet Foundation, Bde Maka Ska, Lake of the Isles, Cedar Lake, Brownie Lake, and the connecting channels are all groomed by volunteer crews made up of mostly neighborhood nordic ski enthusiasts.

The trails are an extremely popular and well- used winter time amenity in Southwest.

“The Loppet Foundation is so grateful to the East Isles Neighborhood Association for supporting our efforts to grow access to skiing in Minneapolis through the grooming of natural snow areas - particularly the Chain of Lakes,” Loppet Foundation Executive Director Claire Wilson said. “This snowmobile will make thousands of Minneapolis skiers, new to the sport and familiar with the sport, so happy.”