May Trails Talk

Spirit Lake welding class

Spirit Lake High School’s 2021 Art of Welding Class


The DCTB was pleased to partner with the Spirit Lake High School Art of Welding class to design and create sculptures that will be included at the Tatanka Ska Trailhead.  As part of their J-term over the winter, 18 students led by instructors Brad Travis and Tyler Pedersen fashioned bike racks, a trail logo board and the top half of the trailhead tower. They did an excellent job of creating unique pieces for the trailhead that will be a focal point of the trails system for many years.

Tatanka metal sign

Mr. Travis shared some history about the class and what was involved with this project. “This will be our 11th large scale public sculpture.  Our first sculpture was the Sami Star, funded by the “Friends of the Sami Center” in 2008.  That was the only sculpture not done in J-term.  Since then we have completed all other sculptures in the 10-12 days of J-term from start to finish.  This project challenged us to make pieces fit the top of the tower to the column of the shelter we are not making.  We also made stainless steel bike racks and a large wall piece to be added to the shelter.  In addition to using stainless steel we also incorporated colored plexiglass into the pieces to add color and lighting effects.  We are extremely fortunate to live in a community that supports the arts and area students as much as they do.  Every year we are honored to build something for the community that will stand for years to come.  To be able to show what high school students are capable of on such a grand scale is awe inspiring.  Kids in the classes have fully embraced the projects knowing that they were making something of merit that they would one day be able to show even to their grandchildren.”

The students involved in the 2021 Art of Welding class include: Evan Beck, Will Block, Connor Bramblett, Kaleb Burbridge, Brennan Burrell, Kelso Carney, Josh Chicoine, Seth Funk, Nicolette Hand, Braxton Jones, Seth Kobberman, Clayton Krummen, Owen Lalumendre, Bryan Leathers, Brodie Madagan, Jacob Tuttle, Damon VandenBerg and Josh Wavra.

The trailhead is funded in partnership with Imagine Iowa Great Lakes and generous donations from our trail supporters.  Thank you to all that have supported this wonderful addition to the Iowa Great Lakes Trails.

BRAWL bike ride

Spirit Lake 4th Graders get ready for the start of BRAWL


The Spirit Lake 4th Grade class spent the last day of school, May 21, participating in the 7th annual BRAWL (Bike Ride Along West Lake). Spirit Lake Elementary physical education teacher Tim O’Hagan organizes the 9-mile ride every year. It is an exellent opportunity to teach the students about bike safety and the joy of our local trails.  Mr. O’Hagan said, “We are pleased to be resuming this tradition for a seventh year after last spring’s cancelation of BRAWL. The students will all start at the same place and finish at the same place but there will be two turn out options to add distances to the ride. We are grateful for all those people who do the little things that make this day a huge success. A special thank you to Dave Kuker of Kuker Trucking for shuttling 100+ bikes to the trailhead and then back to the school.” The DCTB thanks Tim O’Hagan for teaching our kids about the wonderful world of biking and the trails.


DCTB  brews bikes and bites 2021 SUMMER FUNDRAISER

Plans are coming together for the 20201 “Bikes – Brews – Bites” trails celebration that will be on Saturday, July 17.  The event will be at the Okoboji Brewing Company’s outdoor event space where there will be a variety of brews, wine and a bourbon tasting.  Back Alley BBQ will be providing a fantastic menu with live music both in and outside of the brewery. Keep an eye out for information on sponsorship opportunities and tickets that will be available soon through the DCTB’s website and Facebook pages. For more information, please contact us at or visit our website at .



As always, Happy Trails to You and Yours.
Erin Reed, Executive Director