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Minnesota state park entry is free Friday

Get out and explore the day after Thanksgiving.

Jay Cooke State Park
The St. Louis River in Jay Cooke State Park in Carlton. Entry to all Minnesota state parks and recreation areas is free Friday.
File / Duluth News Tribune
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The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is waiving entrance fees to all 75 state parks and recreation areas Friday, the day after Thanksgiving.

The free park day is one of four each year the DNR offers with the goal of encouraging “Minnesotans to get outdoors and enjoy the health and wellness benefits of spending time in nature."

Most state park offices and visitor centers will be lightly staffed Friday. Before and during their visit, visitors are encouraged to:

  • Check visitor alerts and find directions on state park pages via mndnr.gov .
  • Download maps at mndnr.gov/mobile/geopdf before the trip. These maps will display a user’s current location, like other map applications, but the user does not have to be connected to the internet or have cell service to use them.
  • Visit the self-orientation signs near the park entrance for suggestions on what to see and do while visiting.
  • Help protect these special places for the future by staying on trails and leaving no trace.

For more information, go to mndnr.gov/freeparkdays or call 888-646-6367 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday. Fees for cabins and campsites still apply.

John Myers reports on the outdoors, natural resources and the environment for the Duluth News Tribune. You can reach him at jmyers@duluthnews.com.
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