Congratulations to Crow Wing County on the grand opening of the Milford Mine Memorial Regional Park. This park commemorates the 41 miners lost in 1924 when the main iron ore mineshaft collapsed. Thanks to Legacy funding through the Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission, the County was able to complete the memorial, interpretive displays, a boardwalk and other improvements providing access to the site's historic and natural features.
Article and video on the park grand opening link
Park information link
MnDOT has released their 2017 State Bicycle Map as a resource for both users and those planning transportation systems. As County-level maps are completed, they are also being added to the website. MnDOT Bicycle Maps.
Motorized trail advocates, club leaders, agency representatives and others recently met in McIntosh, Minnesota to discuss collaboration opportunities under Legacy amendment funding. The Greater Minnesota Regional Development Commission’s District 2 Planning Committee convened the meeting as a part of a GMRPTC strategic initiative to identify and develop key unmet outdoor recreation needs in the region.
More than 20 people from across the district and state participated in the introductory meeting. “Participants spent time getting to know one another, sharing their challenges in building and maintaining a variety of trails, and understanding just how Legacy funding might help the system,” said Joe Czapiewski, System Plan Coordinator for the GMRPTC.
Next steps will include forming a task force to explore the extent of the motorized trail system in northwest Minnesota and build consensus on what might be priorities for Legacy investment.
“The Legacy Amendment was passed by Minnesotans in part to support the very type of facilities many of our local groups are trying to build,” said Czapiewski. “By determining which trails have the best potential for regional impact, we can invest those dollars in a way that will improve the entire system for everyone.”
The Commission is responsible for system planning and providing recommendations to the Legislature for grants funded by the Parks and Trails Legacy fund to cities and counties outside the seven-county metropolitan area for designated parks and trails of regional significance.
After its August meeting, Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commissioners joined members of the Legacy Advisory Committee and Redwood Falls City Parks staff for a tour of Ramsey Park. The park features spectacular falls on the Redwood river as well as a zoo, play and picnic areas, and trails.
Redwood Falls recently completed an extensive renovation project in Ramsey Park, funded with Legacy dollars through the Commission. Using cutting edge construction techniques and context-sensitive design, 3.5 miles of walking trails were reconstructed throughout the park, including improvements to the falls overlook. Bathroom renovations and replacement were also completed.
“Without the (Legacy) funds the City of Redwood Falls would not have completed the project,” said Jim Doering, Public Works Project Coordinator for Redwood Falls.
When asked about the process of becoming regionally designated, Doering said “Get working on your Master Plan and find some way to document usage! Most of us are sick of plan development but in this case it is a real eye opener. Working with the public and grass roots organizations, you can develop a sustainable and living master plan that will help guide you through prioritizing projects and garnering estimates which helps you develop a solid application. Public surveys, online registrations etc. will show who your patrons are and how far they have traveled to use your park which reveals your regional status.”
Learn more about Ramsey park at https://redwoodareacommunitycenter.com/area-parks/alexander-ramsey-park/. The Commission is responsible for undertaking system planning and providing recommendations to the Legislature for grants funded by the Parks and Trails Legacy fund to cities and counties outside the seven-county metropolitan area for designated parks and trails of regional significance.
Mike Hulett, a founding member of the Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission, was honored at the August Commission meeting for his four years of service. One of the governor’s original appointees to the Commission, Hulett has represented District 3 in west central Minnesota. He retired from the Commission in August as its Chair. Hulett also served as a Moorhead City Councilor.
"It was an honor for me to be selected four years ago to serve on the newly formed Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trials Commission,” said Hulett. “I was given an opportunity to apply my management knowledge and skills, along with my experiences as a long-time parks and trials user, to this important developing endeavor. In doing so, I received a significant parks and trails education from the other Commissioners and the consultants, experts all.”
Tom Ryan, fellow Commissioner and current Vice-Chair, said “The GMRPTC extends our warmest thanks and best wishes to our Chairman, Mike Hulett. We will all miss Mike’s leadership, enthusiasm, advocacy and commitment to public service. Our Commission and our State is the better for his gift of time and effort.”
Hulett and his wife Janie plan to spend winters in Arizona while continuing their summer camping tradition at Itasca State Park and other parks across Minnesota.
Commissioners are appointed by the Governor and include two members from each of the six Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Districts and one member-at-large. The Commission is responsible for system planning and providing recommendations to the Legislature for grants funded by the Parks and Trails Legacy fund to cities and counties outside the seven-county metropolitan area for designated parks and trails of regional significance.
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