Author: Phoebe Ward

DNR Update – a timeline for the planning process and clarifying DNR requirements

Arielle Courtney, DNR Parks & Trails Partnership Development Consultant, shares an update on the DNR’s Friends Group planning process and work to clarify special event requirements.

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January 5, 2023

Intro to Winter Activities at Savanna Portage State Park

From Friends of Savanna Portage If you happen to be in the vicinity of Savanna Portage State Park this winter, you might discover a variety of frost-friendly activities to take part in, courtesy of the newly-formed Friends of Savanna Portage State Park. Coming soon: you ...
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December 30, 2022

Planning a Candlelight Event: A Friends Group Partner Primer

The winter nights are long and dark, but you can put a little light back into your life – and the lives of your neighbors - by holding a candlelight event! These popular events involve setting up candles or electric luminaries along pre-arranged pathways so ...
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candles along path in the snow at night
December 19, 2022

The Jackson County Trail Action Plan is on its way

From Friends of the Jackson County Trails The Friends of Jackson County Trails is working with the City of Jackson, Jackson County, and representatives from local schools to create a MnDOT-funded Trail Action Plan to connect the city of Jackson to Robertson, Brown, and Anderson ...
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December 8, 2022

Webinar: Understanding Minnesota’s Changing Climate

Details Hear from Dr. Kenneth Blumenfeld, a climate scientist with Minnesota’s State Climatology Office, as he breaks down trends in regional climate, including winter warming, changes in precipitation, and how these changes relate to places around the globe. More Webinar Recordings
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November 15, 2022

Free Park Fridays

The last Free Park Friday of the year will be on November 25th this year. You can visit any one of Minnesota's 75 state parks and recreation areas for free, including as an overnight camper. This is a great opportunity for people currently without an annual park permit to explore nearby natural areas - and, given that this Free Park Friday falls directly after Thanksgiving, it is also a chance to spend more time with family over the long holiday weekend!
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November 1, 2022

2023 Habitat Restoration Grants: An Overview

Details Hear from Phoebe Ward, Friends Group Program Manager, as she goes over the 2023 Habitat Restoration grant program, including updated application deadlines, eligible restoration activities, and questions to ask during the planning process. More Webinar Recordings
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October 3, 2022

Recapping the 2022 Annual Dinner

A big thank you to everyone who attended our Annual Dinner on Sep. 28. We had a great turnout and several very memorable speakers. Senator Carrie Ruud received this year's Reuel Harmon Award and the Friends of Whitewater State Park were honored with the Friends ...
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August 18, 2022

Webinar: Heritage Interpretation 101

Details Melissa Peterson, Interpretive Programs Manager for the Minnesota Historical Society, provides an overview of the theory surrounding heritage interpretation. More Webinar Recordings
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August 17, 2022

Webinar: Park Rx

Details Hear from Sara Holger and Jay McLaren about their efforts to implement Park Rx programming at Whitewater State Park. More Webinar Recordings
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July 28, 2022

DNR Update – Listening to Friends Groups and updating volunteer requirements

Arielle Courtney, DNR Parks & Trails Partnership Development Consultant, shares an update on the department’s plans for Friends group engagement and answers some frequently asked questions. 
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view of the headwaters
May 31, 2022

DNR Update – Flooding, volunteer requirements update, and a thank you

Arielle Courtney, DNR Parks & Trails Partnership Development Consultant, shares an update on the latest recission of the COVID-19 volunteer requirements and talks about what’s next for improving the volunteer experience.
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Big Bog SRA boardwalk
May 5, 2022

NorthStar Trail Travelers Events Update

NorthStar Trail Travelers started the year off with a winter snowshoe event on Saturday, February 12, at Nerstrand Big Woods State Park by Northfield. It was a very cold day but 13 diehard souls showed up and enjoyed seeing the falls frozen over. In May, ...
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snowshoers walk on the trail in the prairie