The Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission (GMRPTC) will be holding FREE District-level workshops across Greater Minnesota in late April and May. Workshop attendees will explore trends in park and trail development across the regional system, learn more about the Commission’s application process, and meet GMRPTC Commissioners and staff.
Park and trail managers, city/county administrators, land commissioners, planning consultants and others responsible for regional-level parks and trails in Greater Minnesota are encouraged to attend.
A workshop will be held in each of Greater Minnesota’s six districts, including one on-line session. Attendees are encouraged to register for the workshop in their area but may choose another session if the time is more convenient. Register online for any of the following workshops at https://www.gmrptcommission.org/2022-district-workshops.html.
Monday, April 25, 1:00 – 3:00PM District 5 (Southwest) @ Springfield Community Center, Springfield
Monday, May 2, 1:00 – 3:00PM, District 2 (Northwest) @ Northland Regional Sports Park, Bemidji
Tuesday, May 3, 10:00AM – 12:00PM, District 1 (Northeast) @ Mesabi Station, Eveleth
With ZOOM online attendance option
Wednesday, May 4, 10:30AM – 12:30PM, District 3 (West Central) @ Kensington Rune Stone Park
Wednesday, May 11, 1:00 – 3:00PM, District 6 (Southeast) @ Quarry Hill Park, Rochester
Thursday, May 12, 10:00AM – 12:00PM, District 4 (Central) @ Sherburne History Center, Becker
More information is available at the workshop registration website listed above. For additional information, contact System Plan Coordinator Joe Czapiewski at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission is soliciting proposals from interested, qualified companies to conduct a camper satisfaction and demographic survey as well as collect and analyze camping expenditures with a goal of identifying a daily economic impact figure. Survey should also provide information on use patterns.
A total of seven (7) campgrounds in Greater Minnesota will be surveyed over the summer of 2022. The full RFP can be found HERE.
Proposals are due April 8, 2022 and may be submitted to Renee Mattson, GMRPTC Executive Director, at email@example.com. Contact Renee if you have any questions.
Request for Proposals for Summer Mountain Bike Trail User Count and Visitor Intercept Survey in Greater Minnesota
The Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission (GMRPTC) is soliciting proposals from interested, qualified companies to conduct a user count and visitor intercept survey of three (3) of the mountain bike trail systems in Greater Minnesota during the summer of 2022.
1. Lake County Mountain Bike System
2. Tioga Recreation Area - Cohasset
3. Winona Bluffs Traverse - Winona
Proposals are due no later than 6pm on Wednesday, March 11, 2022.
See the information below for more details.
GMRPTC Mountain Bike Survey RFP 2022
GMRPTC Trails Survey Instrument 2022
The Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission coordinated a survey of three mountain bike systems in Greater Minnesota during the summer of 2021. The Parks and Trails Council of Minnesota was hired to conduct a visitor intercept survey and trail user counts at the Cook County Mountain Bike Trails, Duluth Traverse, and Detroit Mountain Recreation Area.
In this report you will find detailed information about the user counts and the visitor profiles for each system. The report begins with a trail county summary that provides a starting point to understand the unique differences and the similarities of the average daily traffic.
If you have questions or comments, please contact Renee Mattson, Executive Director at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Joe Czapiewski, System Plan Coordinator at email@example.com.
2021 Mountain Bike System Survey Cover Letter
2021 Trail Count Summary
Duluth Topline Report
Duluth Traverse Visitor Profile 2021
Cook County Topline Report
Cook County Visitor Profile 2021
Detroit Mountain Topline Report
Detroit Mountain Visitor Profile 2021
The Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission is pleased to announce a special Connecting People to the Outdoors Small Grant Fund.
The CPO grant fund of $212,053 is available to all designated Greater Minnesota facilities with the intent to encourage innovative ideas and nurture creative partnerships across facilities and with community partners.
We recognize the hardships the pandemic has caused, and this special grant fund is created to allow our partners to imagine programs and activities they may not have considered due to budget constraints. The impact of creative thinking and partnering can have big results!
Please see the attached application materials. For more information, contact System Plan Coordinator Joe Czapiewski at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Executive Director Renee Mattson at email@example.com.
Funding Announcement and Guidelines
Official Resolution Template
The Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission has released its 2021 Policy and Planning Legislative Report. The report includes a review of the Legacy grant recommendations for the Fiscal Year 2023 funding cycle, the criteria and selection process used, as well as an overview of Greater Minnesota's regional system development.
The Commission received 20 eligible funding applications and were able to fund, in whole or in part, all 20 applications! With a $1,860,396 budget make-up due to COVID budget reductions in FY22, the Commission had an unprecedented $12,201,546 to award.
Additionally, $212,053 was placed in a Connecting People with the Outdoors Small Grant Fund that will be used to fund programming, accessibility, and other CPO initiatives that may be modeled as prototype projects in other communities.
Review the full 2021 Policy and Planning Report HERE.
(December 8, 2021 – DULUTH, Minn.) People who enjoy outdoor recreation across Minnesota will soon have their experiences enhanced, once recommendations are approved to fund a record $12.2 million in improvements at 20 regional parks and trails across Greater Minnesota.
The Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission (GMRPTC) just completed its application review process and will now ask the Minnesota Legislature to approve the recommendations through the Parks and Trails Legacy Fund, one of four funds created by the 2008 Minnesota Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment. The Legislature has annually approved GMRPTC requests, since Legacy Funds are already dedicated and may only be spent to support parks and trails of regional or statewide significance.
“The Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission received 20 eligible applications for grants during the 2023 fiscal year, and we’re pleased to recommend funding, in part or in whole, for their excellent approaches to improving parks and trails for users,” said GMRPTC Executive Director Renee Mattson. “We are also able to allocate $212,053 of that amount to create new opportunities for underserved communities.”
Mattson said the Commission is establishing a Connecting People with the Outdoors Small Grant fund, which will be available to all 67 designated parks and trails in Greater Minnesota. Emphasis for grant criteria will be placed on increasing access for underserved and communities of color, enhancing handicap accessibility, transportation and programming. Grant fund applications will be available in early 2022.
See the attached or linked press release below for the full list of 20 parks and trails recommended for funding.
2021 Greater Minnesota Parks and Trails Funding Press Release
The Metropolitan Council Regional Parks agency undertook a research study to better understand and provide for the outdoor recreational needs and preferences of young people. After noting that youth engagement has been dropping since the 1990's, the Agency understood that connecting youth to the outdoors is essential to achieve the equitable outcomes required in the Met Council's 2040 Regional Parks Policy Plan.
This report includes an overview of how they collaborated to engage youth, what engagement techniques worked and what didn't, and the key findings of their research. The GMRPTC encourages effective public engagement that builds equitable use among all Minnesotans.
Youth & Parks: Getting Outdoors Close to Home
The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announces grant funding opportunities for park and trail projects across Minnesota. Applications are now being accepted for the following grant programs: outdoor recreation, natural and scenic area, regional trail, local trail connections and federal recreational trails.
These grants help local governments throughout the state create partnerships with the DNR to fund projects ranging from local parks, regional trails to trail connections. Eligibility requirements, deadlines, contact information and other details can be found on the DNR Web site at mndnr.gov or on the following program links:
Outdoor Recreation Grant Program
Natural and Scenic Area Program
Federal Recreational Trail Program
Regional Trail Grant Program
Local Trail Connections Grant Program
The City of Red Wing recently completed a major renovation of He Mni Can/Barn Bluff Park. Supported by Greater Minnesota Legacy funds, the City worked with area Native American tribes, particularly the Prairie Island Indian Community, to recognize, honor and protect the incredible cultural resources on the site.
A new video highlighting the results of the project can be found HERE.
The Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission is supportive of the great collaborations between local partners and Native American communities throughout the regional system. Working together, these partnerships provide opportunities for all residents and visitors to enjoy the outdoors and protect the history that makes our communities unique. We encourage all of our system partners to explore similar possibilities by contacting their local tribal representatives or contacting us for assistance!
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