prairie grass
May 18, 2020
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Status of 2020 Legislative Priority – Infrastructure

Fix critical infrastructure in state parks and trails One of our priorities during the 2020 Legislature is to address the backlog of maintenance for state parks and trails buildings and other assets, such as shower buildings, trail bridges, water systems, etc. The agency’s assessment shows ...
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May 7, 2020
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Friends groups creatively connect people to their parks through activities

Friends groups thrive on bringing people together within the park or trail they support. They organize educational events, volunteer work days, and social gatherings. Now, within the context of social distancing guidelines, friends groups are getting creative in how they are connecting their community with ...
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Minnesota State Capitol
May 6, 2020
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Time to urge legislators to support parks and trails

Now that the four Minnesota House and Senate caucus leaders have agreed to a midnight, Saturday, May 9 deadline for bills, we are expecting a flurry of activity as lawmakers race to complete a long list of priorities, including the omnibus bonding and tax bills. Of particular interest will be whether or not the Democrat-controlled House and the Republican-controlled Senate can reconcile significant partisan differences to pass these bills.
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Cabin in woods with graphics overlaid
April 30, 2020
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Minnesota State Parks are open for day-use only. How does that compare to other states?

On Thursday, the DNR extended state park campground closures through May 18 to be consistent with Gov. Walz’s stay-at-home order. Most state park systems across the country have similar policies in place.
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April 27, 2020
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Trail use has surged in response to the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted nearly every aspect of normal life. Over 300 million Americans, representing 95 percent of the population, are under stay-at-home orders. All across the country, in an effort to slow the spread of this deadly disease, public officials have closed everything from museums to libraries to concert halls to restaurants and bars.
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Goats roaming at the park
April 13, 2020
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Goats are Taking Over Chester Woods Park

From Friends of Chester Woods What’s more fun than watching goats at play? How about watching goats accomplishing much needed work for the parks while they do their goat ‘thing’? Faced with overwhelming amounts of invasive buckthorn, honeysuckle and overgrown brush in the park, Friends ...
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volunteer in a bright yellow vest
April 10, 2020
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Friends of Lake Maria State Park

Providing public and youth engagement opportunities
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bridge re-decking over water
April 8, 2020
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Spring 2020 News at Chester Woods Park

From Friends of Chester Woods In This Issue Goats for invasive species Bridge decking Volunteer hours in 2019 25th Anniversary of park Photo by: Friends of Chester Woods Click to view full story Go to friends' main page
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April 7, 2020
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Legislative efforts focused on COVID-19, but bonding bill could still happen later in session

The 2020 legislative session isn’t turning out the way any of us expected. COVID-19 has altered all aspects of daily life in Minnesota (and around the world), and that includes Parks & Trails Council’s advocacy efforts at the state capitol. As you know, this is a rapidly changing situation and many people across our state agencies, legislature, and governor’s office are working hard to respond to this unprecedented emergency.
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Volunteers raking dirt to restore prairie plants
April 2, 2020
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April Newsletter – Friends of Nertrand Big Woods

From Friends of Nerstrand Big Woods State Park In This Issue At the Park Now Nature News: Monarchs Join Us Planned Events Photo: Courtesy of Friends of Nerstrand Big Woods State Park Click to Download Go to friends' main page
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March 31, 2020
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State Park campgrounds closed until May 1

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (MnDNR) announced that ALL campgrounds in state parks, recreation areas and forests will be closed until May 1, 2020. Parks & Trails Council fully supports this decision, which is important to protect our state's health, even as it may deliver a blow to Minnesota State Parks and Trails' budget.
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March 24, 2020
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DNR invites public comment on timber harvests at Father Hennepin State Park

Open house at Mille Lacs Kathio State Park has been postponed The Department of Natural Resources is amending the management plan for Father Hennepin State Park, located on the southeast shore of Mille Lacs Lake. The amendment will allow timber harvest activities that are planned ...
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A stunning sunrise from the breathtaking vista of Frontenac State Park overlooking beautiful Lake Pepin
March 23, 2020
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We’re adjusting, but staying committed to protecting parks and trails

A letter from our executive director Our commitment to Minnesota's parks and trails has never been stronger Ten days ago the Parks & Trails Council office was bustling with the activity of a statewide nonprofit working on multiple fronts. Lisa was making arrangements for our ...
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actors ready to portray history of the park
March 17, 2020
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Video of Theater in the Park now online + Volunteers Recognized

From Friends of Whitewater State Park Theater In the Park Video The Friends of Whitewater recently added the Theater in the Park performance recording to their webpage. It is a powerful story about the history of the Whitewater Valley and the changing relationship between humans ...
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Icebergs on the banks of the St. Louis River
March 4, 2020
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Spring Changes for DNR Parks and Trails

An update from Arielle Courtney, DNR Kao Thao, park naturalist, showing kids how to tap a tree to collect sap for maple syrup First of all, congratulations to everyone for making it to March! I hope you enjoyed wonderful wintry outdoor activities and are now ...
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