All News

Brass band playing in parking lot
July 9, 2021
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Gateway Brown’s Creek Trail Association

Trail advocates who go the extra mileParks & Trails Council of Minnesota is proud to announce our 2021 Friends Group Partner Award goes to the GBCTA. This is the second year P&TC has recognized a friends group with this award, and the accompanying $500 grant, which the friends group can use to continue its great work on behalf of the trail.T
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June 7, 2021
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Parks & Trails Fun Quiz – June

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kids filling a hole of a newly planted tree
June 1, 2021
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Grantees begin restoring habitat with in-person events

Grantees have begun restoring habitat at parks across Minnesota. Under P&TC's habitat restoration grant program, friends groups are planting trees, removing invasive species, and helping to establish native woodland species. See the albums below for a sneak peak into some of these projects. Friends of ...
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orange and black butterfly
May 28, 2021
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Amidst COVID, friends group launches new grant program and recruits board members

Grants for Interpretive Activities Schools, youth groups, and individuals can now apply for funds to carry out interpretive activities at Wild River State Park. The grants would cover a wide variety of activities—they just need to focus on learning and take place in the park. ...
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video still that shows rendering of Oxbow Park's new nature center
May 20, 2021
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Olmsted County breaks ground on new nature center at Oxbow Park

From Friends of Oxbow Plans and fundraising are underway for developing a new nature center at Oxbow Park. Read the update on Olmsted County's website: "Olmsted County breaks ground on a new nature center at Oxbow Park" Watch project videoMore about the friends
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Newspaper clipping showing the owners of Smuda Zoo
April 5, 2021
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Where Gretchen the Lion once roared, park visitors will soon stroll

You wouldn’t guess it by strolling the grounds today, but the property Parks & Trails Council acquired for Charles A. Lindbergh State Park in 2020 was once famous for the menagerie of wild animals that lived there when it was the home of the Smuda Zoo.
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Man in biking outfit stands in tall grass
March 24, 2021
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Volunteers support bluebirds on Gateway State Trail

Bluebirds along the Gateway State Trail enjoy a helping hand from volunteers with the Gateway Brown’s Creek Trail Association (GBCTA). Since 2014, the friends group has maintained 16 houses each year, installing them in spring, monitoring the nests throughout summer, and cleaning and storing the ...
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three wooden cabins next to a field
March 15, 2021
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Redwood County announces new camper cabins

Redwood County’s one and only park, Plum Creek Park, is proud to announce the addition of camper cabins for the 2021 camping season.

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Parks & Trails Council's Research Bike
March 10, 2021
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House Legislative committee hears our case for state trail rehab

On Tuesday, our staff presented at the House Capital Investment Committee to share our State of the Trails report.
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March 8, 2021
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Parks & Trails Fun Quiz – March

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Kids bike away from the park building
February 3, 2021
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2019-2020 Youth Engagement Grant Projects In Review

In 2019, Parks & Trails Council launched a grant program designed as a partnership with friends groups to engage youth in parks and trails. In this first year of the program we began working with eight friends groups who identified innovative ways to engage youth ...
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Cover of Newsletter
February 2, 2021
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Special Places Newsletter Winter 2021

From the president | Gov. proposes park permit increase | Lake Shetek State Park | Nature prescriptions | 5 ways nature makes us healthy | Adapting with friends groups | State Park project updates | Places & Friends: Chester Woods Park
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Wooden sign mounted between stone pillars
January 22, 2021
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History of Lake Shetek State Park

1862 Tensions escalate between the Dakota and white settlers leading to a group of Dakota attacking the Lake Shetek settlement in the early days of the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862. 1863 The bodies of the 15 white settlers who were killed in the attack are ...
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Aerial view of peninsula
January 22, 2021
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Saving a rare forested peninsula for Lake Shetek State Park

Parks & Trails Council secured a treasured landscape for Lake Shetek State Park during a live auction on Oct. 24, 2020. The sale is expected to be finalized by May. The 24.5-acre property, with 3,000 feet of lakeshore along Lake Shetek, was put up for ...
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Eight people standing outdoors with buckets around waist to collect seeds
January 21, 2021
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Meet the Friends of Chester Woods Park

This is a park that wholeheartedly welcomes volunteers. “There’s a whole culture of embracing volunteers within all Olmstead County Parks,” says Joel Dunette, one of the founding members of the friends group. In fact, the number of hours that volunteers contribute toward the park is equal to the staff hours.

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