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Vintage snowmobiles hit the trail in Crivitz for annual Sick Day 100 ride

CRIVITZ (WLUK) -- The snowmobile engines were revving up in Marinette County Wednesday, and for some, it was all about taking a trip down memory lane.

About a dozen snowmobilers took out vintage rides for the fourth annual "Sick Day 100" in Crivitz.

With brand names like Ariens, and Coleman, two snowmobiles may look out of place, but for members of the N.E.W. Low Buck Vintage Riders, sleds like those fit right in.

"When you get back into these sleds, that were in the 70's, there was literally a couple hundred manufacturers, where now you only have four manufacturers. So back then, it was crazy. Everybody was making a sled," said Jeff Schwaller, N.E.W. Low Buck Vintage Riders President.

And with a pull of the rope, and a cloud of blue smoke, the "Sick Day 100" was officially underway.

"That was just kind of a tongue-in-cheek name we came up with," said Schwaller.

Club President Schwaller says many people do call in sick to participate, but there is another reason to ride through Marinette County.

"With these sleds and their small suspension, Wednesday's your best bet for the smoothest trails, not as much traffic," he said.

Snowmobiler Rick Mielke rides a 1976 Mercury Trail Twister.

"They're a little squirrely, and a little rougher than the new ones. A lot rougher actually. But it's just a lot of fun," said Rick Mielke, Fond du Lac.

Ted "Bear" Schwaller says his 1973 Arctic Cat Cheetah is vintage all the way.

"It's wonderful. Because you can get a sore back. The seat's low, like the old days. It just brings back memories. This jacket is from 1973," said Ted "Bear" Schwaller, N.E.W. Low Buck Vintage Riders Vice President.

And as the riders made their way toward Wausaukee, organizers say the "Sick Day 100" was a success.

"We might fall a little bit short this year, but that's ok. It's not about the miles, it's the smiles. And there will be plenty of that today," said Schwaller.

The N.E.W. Low Buck Vintage Riders Club is based in northern Marinette County.

And while all snowmobiles are welcome, sleds made in the 1970's are truly considered "vintage."

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