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Vermillion River reopening

Posted by wlpo on April 1, 2012

For people that do whitewater rafting and paddling, many say the Vermilion River near Oglesby is the best place in the state for it. As of Saturday, you can enjoy the rapids once again. DNR Director Marc Miller gave the official okay to reopen a stretch of the river owned by Buzzi Unicem. Buzzi closed the roughly three-mile stretch in 2009 after a drowning at the low head dam. Since then, the state spent around 200 thousand dollars in repairs and worked out a lease deal with Buzzi. State Representative Frank Mautino, an integral part of the project was also on hand. There is still a 180 foot buffer upstream from the dam and 45 feet downstream from the dam where it’s considered trespassing. Miller cautioned there is still no completely safe dam. Today’s reopening ceremony was held at Vermillion River Rafting, a business hit hard by the closure. Owner Bob Herbst thanked Miller and State Representative Frank Mautino for spearheading the deal and promised to be as good a neighbor as he can be.

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