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This article was published 9/1/2009 (4883 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Frazil ice prevented the river trail from extending on to the Red River this winter.

MARK REIMER / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Frazil ice prevented the river trail from extending on to the Red River this winter.

Winnipeg’s river trail — which set a record last year as the world's longest — will be even longer this year and feature more access points and special events, officials announced as they opened the trail today.

"What a great way to connect the two jewels of our city and open up the trail to so many more neighbourhoods along the way," said Paul Jordan, chief operating officer of The Forks.

A section of the trail from The Forks to the Hugo Street Dock is now ready for skaters. Plans call for the Winnipeg River Trail to stretch all the way from The Forks to Assiniboine Park later this winter — a distance of 9.34 kilometres.

Last year, the trail covered 8.54 kilometres from north of The Forks on the Red River to Omands Creek, surpassing Ottawa’s famed Rideau Canal and earning a spot in the Guinness World Records.

The trail will only use the Assiniboine River this winter due to the inconsistencies in the ice surface caused by frazil ice.

There will be eight public access points to the trail: The Forks, The Legislature, Osborne, Hugo, Dominion, Omands Creek, Bourkevale and Assiniboine Park.

This year’s events will include free programming every weekend day from noon to 4 p.m., including  ice painting, inukshuk building, broomball challenges and ice-bike races.

The trail is maintained and programmed through a collaboration between the The Forks Renewal Corporation and Festival du Voyageur. The province will provide $100,000 over the next two years for the trail, Manitoba Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Steve Ashton also announced today.

The river trail now has its own website, as well: www.rivertrail.ca.

fpcity@freepress.mb.ca