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Polar bears were sighted along the Lake Michigan shoreline in Kewaunee on New Year's Day.
Polar bears were sighted along the Lake Michigan shoreline in Kewaunee on New Year's Day. / Tom Skubal/For the Kewaunee County Star-News
Firemen's Centennial Park in Luxemburg patiently awaits the return of spring and children on Jan. 2. / Warren Bluhm/Kewaunee County Star-News
Canada geese (and a sea gull or two) huddle against the wind along the beach in Kewaunee as winter sets in. / Warren Bluhm/Kewaunee County Star-News
The Kewaunee lighthouse stands against Lake Michigan on a dreary winter's morning. / Warren Bluhm/Kewaunee County Star-News

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A small but stalwart group of “polar bears” renewed their annual New Year’s Day plunge into Lake Michigan this year, a scene that was repeated on Tuesday from Sheboygan to Jacksonport to Washington Island.

After a long, hot summer and mild fall, winter has settled in over Kewaunee County. Although no more snow is forecast for the time being, temperatures are projected to be no warmer than the low 30s this week under sunny skies.

Snowmobile trails have begun to open around the area – the Kewaunee County Promotions and Recreation Department announced this week that Section 4 in Kewaunee County was opened effective at 6 a.m. Dec. 30. Section 4 includes all areas south of Wisconsin 29 and the area east of Townline Road to the Lakeshore and south of Rockledge Road in the town of Pierce. The other three sections were opened at 7 p.m. Jan. 2, after the print edition of the Kewaunee County Star-News had been sent to press for this week.

Riders are asked to use caution as trail conditions may be less than ideal in certain areas. Plowed and open fields may lack snow cover in some areas. Riders are urged to watch out for icy patches and water along the trails. Snowmobilers are also encouraged to stay on the marked trails and respect adjoining property owners. Hundreds of gracious landowners are responsible for the county’s 290-plus state-funded and club trails. Please respect their property and their privacy.

Riders should check the 24-hour information line before heading out if they have any doubts about trails being open. That number is (920) 388-7199.

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