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Edgerton — A recently established park near Edgerton will soon be getting horse trails installed.

WHC District 4 and the Friends of Silverwood County Park held a Poker Ride fundraiser on Oct. 8, bringing in over $2,000.

The brand new park has its beginnings as a historic farmstead, owned by one family, the Silverwoods, since 1870. Irene Silverwood donated the land to Dane County in 2001, but pursuant to her wishes, it was kept in agricultural production until quite recently. Now, volunteers are making huge strides in developing the land for public use.

Although much of the land is still used for farming, buildings are being restored, a community teaching garden has been planted, and trails are being developed. The park features beautiful oak groves, rolling hills, and an early 1800’s stone house.

The trails are not yet open to the public, but the Friends of Silverwood have invited people to come to the park for specific events, including a fall festival, wildlife education, agricultural education for urban youth, astronomy classes, and a unique corn crib art show.

Kattie Whitten, President of the Friends of Silverwood, Heather Lehkan, President of Wisconsin Cowboy Dressage, Cheri Trick, and many others worked hard to put on the Poker Ride. The fundraiser featured great food, a WHC recruiting display, and a huge silent auction, with beautiful items donated by local artisans and businesses.

Forty riders attended, paying $30 each for the privilege of being the very first to ride Silverwood's beautiful trails. The Friends of Silverwood will use the money raised during the Poker Ride to install trail signage, with any left over to be put towards building a parking lot. They hope to officially open the horse trails to the public in 2017.

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