Minnesota citizens can help chart future of state parks and trails

St. Paul — Minnesotans have an opportunity to help chart the
course of regional and state parks and trails for the next 25 years
by participating in one of 17 workshops to be held around the state
in May and June. 

The meetings will provide citizens with a chance to influence
the Parks and Trails Legacy Plan that will guide funding decisions
for regional and state parks and trails.

Workshops are scheduled for the following communities: Baudette,
Bemidji, Brainerd, Detroit Lakes, Duluth, Eden Prairie, Forest
Lake, Grand Rapids, Marshall, Minneapolis, North Mankato, St.
Cloud, St. Paul, Savage, Thief River Falls, Rochester and
Willmar.

Minnesotans passed for the Clean Water, Land, and Legacy
Amendment in 2008 that enacted a three-eighths percent sales tax
increase for natural resources and the arts. Of the money
collected, 14.25 percent is providing funding for state, metro, and
Greater Minnesota parks and trails projects.

The plan will offer a vision, set priorities, and develop
funding criteria. The plan will also identify gaps and needs in the
current regional and state system, and make recommendations to
address them. It will be presented to the Minnesota Legislature by
Feb. 15, 2011.

The Minnesota DNR is partnering with the Citizens League, a
non-partisan, non-profit organization, in the workshop planning
effort. People from all walks of life are encouraged to participate
in the workshops, especially those who currently don’t use the
regional or state parks and trails system. The workshops are
scheduled from 7-9 p.m. and will focus on vision, priorities, and
future opportunities. The meetings will provide ample opportunity
for discussion and questions.

“Everyone who attends will have an opportunity to provide their
insights,” said Courtland Nelson, DNR Parks and Trails Division
director. “Now is the time for Minnesotans to share their ideas and
dreams for parks and trails for the next 25 years.”

The University of Minnesota is developing an inventory of
existing regional and state parks and trails. This information will
be used at the workshops to help participants make recommendations
for the future.

For meeting details and more information about the Parks and
Trails Legacy Plan, visit www.patl.intergov.mn.gov.
People unable to attend a workshop, can provide input on the
Citizen’s League website at www.citizing.org.

Workshop location and dates follow. All run from 7 to 9 p.m.

• St. Cloud Public Library, 1300 West Saint Germain St.,
Mississippi Room, Thursday,  May 6.

• Baudette, Lake of the Woods Public School, 236 15th Ave. SW,
ITV – Media Room, Tuesday,  May 11.

• Ramsey/St. Paul, Como Zoo/Conservatory, Visitor Center, 1225
Estabrook Dr., St. Paul, Tuesday, May 11     

• Thief River Falls, Northland Community and  Technical College,
1101 Highway 1 East, Rooms 201 & 203 (West side of campus),
Wednesday, May 12

• Anoka/Washington, Headwaters Service Center, 19955 Forest Road
N., Forest Lake, Wednesday, May 12

• Bemidji, Bemidji State University, Hobson Memorial Union, 1500
Birchmont Dr., Crying Wolf Room, Thursday, May 13     

• Detroit Lakes, Minnesota State Community and Technical
College, 900 Hwy 34 E. C101, Tuesday, May 18     

• Scott/Dakota, McColl Pond Environmental Learning Center,
Savage, 13550 Dakota Ave S., Thursday, May 20     

• Grand Rapids, Minnesota Interagency Fire Center, 402 SE 11th
St., Training Room (upstairs), Thursday, May 27     

• Brainerd, Central Lakes College, 501 West College Dr.,
Cafeteria, Wednesday, June 2     

• Duluth, The Depot, 506 West Michigan St., Thursday, June 3   
 

• Hennepin/Carver, Bryant Lake Park, 6800 Rowland Rd., Eden
Prairie, Tuesday, June 8     

• Marshall, Southwest Minn. State University, 1501 State St.,
Wednesday, June 9     

• Willmar, Ridgewater College, 2101–15th Ave. NW, Thursday, June
10     

• Minneapolis, Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board
Headquarters, 2117 West River Rd. N., Tuesday, June 15

• Rochester, Clarion Inn, 1630 South Broadway, Wednesday,  June
16

• Mankato, South Central College,1920 Lee Boulevard, E119 and
E121 North Mankato, Thursday, June 17.

Categories: Rob Drieslein

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