MN Nature Activities: May 22-28


05/22/16 Geocaching 101
1-3 PM Discover the fun of geocaching and how you can use a GPS (Global Positioning System) unit to find hidden treasures at Minnesota state parks. You will receive hands‐on training that will help you participate in the statewide Geocaching program. Space is limited and registration is required. Program will start at the Visitor Center.
Class Full Call 612-725-2724 to be put on waiting list, if available.
Fort Snelling State Park

05/22/16 BOW – Trap Shooting $$$
9 AM to 12 PM Cost: $20, Join us to learn the game of trap shooting. This class is for learning the concept and skills of trap shooting. Please bring your own firearm and ammunition. We will try and accommodate those without a firearm. Registration: Register with Angela at
Wings North, Pine City

05/22/16 BOW – Sporting Clays $$$
1 PM to 4 PM $50 Join us to learn the game of shooting sporting clays, in this wooded course. Please bring your own firearm and ammunition. We will try and accommodate those without a firearm. Register with Angela at
Wings North, Pine City

05/22/16 Glacial Waters Walk with Dr. Chad Wittkop
2 PM to 3:30 PM The walk will be approximately one mile in length, and will have some rough, rocky terrain and stairs. Wear sturdy shoes and bring a sense of adventure. Space is limited for this special event. Please pre-register by contacting Jenni Webster at 651-465-5711 x 225 or
Interstate State Park



05/26/16 Mille Lacs Fisheries Advisory Committee
5:30 PM to 8:30 PM This will be a working business meeting of the Mille Lacs Fisheries Advisory Committee (MLFAC). The MLFAC is a group of citizen volunteers who provide input to DNR on management on Lake Mille Lacs. The public is invited to attend and observe this meeting, and approximately 15 mintues will be provided at the end of the meeting for public questions and comments. To sign up to receive email updates about these meetings, visit the Mille Lacs Lake management page (, click on “Newsletter” on the left menu and enter your email in the blue box on the page.
Appeldoorn’s Sunset Bay Resort, 45401 Mille Lacs Parkway, Isle, MN



05/27/16 – 09/05/16 ABCs in Nature Photo Safari
Pick up your game card and work as an individual or team. You will need a digital camera and a great imagination. Participants will venture out in the park looking for all 26 letters of the alphabet either in the Meadowbrook area or Bonanza area. Use your power of observation and imagination to find the Alphabet in Nature. When you have found all 26, come back to the park office to show the Park Ranger. The team or individual with all 26 will win a prize.
Big Stone Lake State Park

05/27/16 – 09/05/16 What Am I? Geocache Riddle
The participant will pick up a game card at the office or self-registration station. To play you will need a GPS unit. You can use your own or borrow a Garmin etrex10 from the State Park office located at Meadowbrook. The geocaches are located at the Bonanza area of Big Stone Lake State Park. Enter the coordinates for the four “What Am I? Geocache” riddle routes and figure out the riddles from the clue cards. When you have solved the puzzles, come to the Meadowbrook office to receive a poster and find out the answers to the riddles!
Big Stone Lake State Park

05/27/16 Ghost Town Cemetery Field Trip
6:30 PM to 8 PM The town of Beaver was abandoned in 1938 after repeated flooding. This ghost town cemetery holds many stories of pioneers, civil war veterans, Minnesota conservation hero Richard Dorer and others who have lived in the Whitewater Valley. Join us for a cemetery visit and learn some fascinating history about the area. Bring your own transportation as the cemetery is located 5 miles north of the park. We’ll begin at the Visitor Center.
Whitewater State Park

05/27/16 A River Runs Through It
9 PM to 10 PM When Europeans first came to Southeastern Minnesota they found a landscape rich in natural resources. Take a virtual trip back in time and learn how the natural history of the region made the South Branch of the Root River such a desirable place to live and how it contributed to the unique landscape in the Forestville area. Meet at the amphitheater.
Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park

05/27/16 Orientate Yourself
8 PM to 9 PM Got some place to go? Use a compass! The naturalist will show you the secrets to using this simple tool then challenge you to do an orienteering course.
Sibley State Park

05/27/16 Art Opening – Doug Ross
7 PM to 8:30 PM The April through May art show at Tettegouche State Park features landscape paintings by Doug Ross.
Tettegouche State Park

05/27/16 Mammal Jam Weekend – Skins, Scats & Skulls
5 PM to 6 PM Celebrate Minnesota’s mammals at St. Croix State Park’s 5th annual Mammal Jam Weekend!
St. Croix State Park

05/27/16 Tools in Stone: Flint Knapping
12 PM to 4 PM Imagine making all the tools you need to survive from stone. Experience creating arrowheads, scrappers, or spear points with local artist Al Anderson as he demonstrates flint knapping; the traditional form of making stone tools by hand. Drop in to watch Al in action, see amazing tools he has made and try your hand at knapping. Visit the tent outside the Visitor Center.
Gooseberry Falls State Park



05/28/16 Snake, Rattle and Roll!
7 PM to 8 PM Explore the amazing snakes that call Minnesota home with special scaled guests from Snake Discovery. Our guest presenter will entertain you with examples of what it takes to survive as a snake and give you the chance to meet a few up close (if you choose). Meet at the stone picnic shelter in the park’s picnic grounds. The program will begin promptly at 7 PM.
Interstate State Park

05/28/16 Take Flight! Spotting Spring Birds
7:30 AM to 10 AM May and early June are exciting months for birding the forests and lakes around the Mississippi Headwaters. Discover the songs and sights of Minnesota’s spring migratory birds. Join birder and instructor Ron Miller MD for a birding walk in Itasca State Park to discover recent arrived breeding birds as well as species passing through on their northward migration.

7:30 a.m. to 8 a.m.: Social gathering in the lobby of Douglas Lodge: Arrive early and join us for coffee and mini-muffins as we visit with Ron prior to the start of the birding field trip.
8 a.m. to 10 a.m.: Birding Field Trip: Join Ron Miller as he leads us on a birding field trip in Itasca State Park. Stops will include either the Dr. Roberts Trail or Mississippi Headwaters area depending on bird activity.

Itasca State Park

05/28/16 Birding by i-phone
9:30 AM to 10:30 AM Birding isn’t just for the experts anymore. Bring your app-loading device to learn some easy 1-2-3’s of birding with a phone in your pocket. Meet in the Interpretive Center theater. Devices not necessary if you’d like to simply learn some easy birding steps.
Sibley State Park

05/28/16 Science Saturday: Phenology
8 AM to 10 AM
Lake Vermilion – Soudan Underground Mine State Park

05/28/16 Are You in the Dark About the Dark?
9:30 PM to 10:30 PM Sometimes the dark can seem somewhat scary but come along on this short night hike and you’ll discover ways to explore a whole new world that you might never have known about before. Meet at the Beach House. The hike will last approximately 1 hour.
Lake Shetek State Park

05/28/16 Starlight, Starbright!
William O’Brien State Park

05/28/16 Invasive Species Spotlight: Garlic Mustard
9 PM to 10:30 PM Join amateur astronomer, Kenny Bahmer, as he takes you on a tour of the night sky. We will start indoors with a program on the evening skies and then head outside to view some of these evening delights through a telescope. If it is cloudy, there will still be the indoor program. Meet at the Visitor Center.
Fort Snelling State Park

05/28/16 Archery in the Parks
10 AM to 11:30 AM Invasive species threaten native populations by having adaptation that allow them to grow bigger, faster, and stronger. In today’s presentation you’ll learn about the natural history of one invasive species common to the metro area and then we’ll spend some time on the trail identifying and removing it! No registration required.
Afton State Park

05/28/16 Wildflower Walk
9:30 AM to 12 PM Stroll along Brown’s Creek State Trail to see what beauties are blooming.
Brown’s Creek State Trail

05/28/16 Outdoor Photography Workshop
10 AM to 12 PM Professional photographer Steve Kohls will lead this special 2-hour class. Bring your camera. Learn how to use and maximize your individual camera, while learning tips on techniques and equipment, from point-and-shoot to SLR. Meet at the interpretive center.
Mille Lacs Kathio State Park

05/28/16 Hunters of the Sky
8 PM to 9 PM The Audubon Center of the North Woods will use live hawks and owls in this special program about raptors of Minnesota. Meet at the Council Ring in Lakeview Campground. In case of rain the program will be held inside the Lakeview Picnic Shelter.
Father Hennepin State Park

05/28/16 Snake’s Alive
1 PM to 2:30 PM Snakes are known for their flicking tongues and shedding skins, but what else makes them so unique? Find out as Emily Roberts from Snake Discovery brings out her live snakes for you to see and touch. Get a chance to interact with many of Minnesota’s native snakes. At the Visitor Center.
Wild River State Park

05/28/16 Fossil Field Trip
10 AM to 12 PM On this trip you will find, and can keep, fossils of plants and animals that lived here hundreds of millions of years ago. They were on earth long before the dinosaurs! What can they tell us about this area’s past? Fossil cards, to display your collection, will be distributed. Bring transportation, as the site is nine miles from the park.
Whitewater State Park

05/28/16 Summer Bat Count —Volunteer
7:30 PM to 9:30 PM Recently the world that Minnesota’s bats live in has dramatically changed. A new threat is on the horizon unlike anything we’ve seen before. During this program you will get a chance to learn a little bit about Minnesota’s bat population and the dreaded White Nose Syndrome that threatens their world. After an introduction at our visitor center, we will go out and count the resident bat population. This amazing experience will not only be fun for everyone, but will also help us understand changes to our local bats in the years to come.
Whitewater State Park

05/28/16 In Search of Wildflowers
11 AM to 12 PM Take a gentle walk in search of spring flowers. Learn identification tips, flower lore and legend with the naturalist. Meet at fireplace inside the Visitor Center.
Gooseberry Falls State Park

05/28/16 Geology Rocks Gooseberry
2 PM to 3 PM Listen to the rocks as they tell of lava flows, glaciers and roaring rivers on this hike of discovery. Join the Naturalist around the middle and lower falls. Majority of the hike will involve descending stairs. Meet at fireplace inside the Visitor Center.
Gooseberry Falls State Park

05/28/16 Family Canoeing $$$
1 PM to 3 PM $15, Ages 8+ Designed around having fun, being safe and learning proper paddling techniques. Participants will learn water safety, entering and exiting, and paddle strokes. Ages 5-8 may ride along accompanied by an adult.
Cleary Lake Regional Park, Prior Lake

05/28/16 Junior Naturalist: Bring on the Butterflies
10 AM to 11 AM Want to help butterflies? Discover what you can do as you create butterfly feeders and plant seeds to start a butterfly garden at home. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Meet at the stone shelter in the picnic grounds.
Interstate State Park

05/28/16 Cottonwood River Paddle
10 AM to 3 PM Take a paddle on the Cottonwood River from County Highway 11 to for just under twelve miles to Flandrau State Park. On this stretch of the Cottonwood you will be able to experience numerous riffles, a floodplain forest and a diverse wildlife selection. Please register for the paddle by calling 507-384-8890 or sending an email to You will be responsible for transportation to the put-in and take-out. We will meet at the County Highway 11 boat access point. The paddle will be canceled if the water flow conditions aren’t safe enough.
Flandrau State Park

05/28/16 Beaver Ecology
7 PM to 8 PM We will learn what makes this animal special and show off some of its unique characteristics by dressing one lucky person up as a beaver. This aquatic mammal spends a great amount of time in the water and has ability to the change the environment around it. As the largest rodent in North America, the beaver has had a major effect on the continent’s history. The program will also cover the ecology of beavers and some of its physical adaptations. Meet at the Day Use Area near the playground.
Flandrau State Park

05/28/16 Interpretive Nature Walk
10 AM to 11:30 AM Join naturalist Bruce Ause on a 1-mile interpretive nature hike.
Frontenac State Park

05/28/16 Fish Printing
1 PM to 2 PM
Whitewater State Park

05/28/16 Weaving with Natural Fibers: Nature Bracelets
3 PM to 4 PM
Whitewater State Park

05/28/16 Harvesting Aged Shellfish
10 AM to 12 PM
Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park

05/28/16 I Can Trout Fish
4 PM to 6 PM
Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park

05/28/16 Frogs and Toads
9 PM to 10 PM
Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park

05/28/16 Lady’s-slipper Walk
1 PM to 2:30 PM
Jay Cooke State Park

05/28/16 Stories in Stone – Geology Walk
4 PM to 5 PM
Jay Cooke State Park

05/28/16 100 Years at Jay Cooke State Park
8 PM to 9 PM
Jay Cooke State Park

05/28/16 Roving Naturalist Drop-In
3 PM to 5 PM
Sibley State Park

05/28/16 Believe it or Bat
8 PM to 9 PM
Sibley State Park

05/28/16 All about Bluebirds
2 PM
Lac Qui Parle State Park

05/28/16 Make and Take a Rock
3 PM to 4 PM
Interstate State Park

05/28/16 Itasca Wildlife Wonders Walk: The Gift of Beaver
8 PM to 9 PM Meet inside Forest Inn (across from Douglas Lodge).
Itasca State Park

Mammal Jam Weekend – Live Animal Booth, Mammal Tales, Make Tracks, and Mammals of the Night Hike
10 AM to 8 PM Programming throughout the day. Stop into park office.
St. Croix State Park

05/28/16 Birding at Bear Head
8 AM to 10 AM
Bear Head Lake State Park

05/28/16 Junior Naturalists – Look Up at Wild Weather!
1 PM to 2:30 PM
Jay Cooke State Park

05/28/16 Parks for Monarchs: Planting for Pollinators
7 PM to 8 PM
Gooseberry Falls State Park

05/28/16 Interpretive Nature Walk
3 PM to 4 PM
Frontenac State Park

05/28/16 Jr. Naturalist: Totally Turtles
2 PM to 3 PM Kids, come join the naturalist and explore a day in the life of a turtle. We’ll head to the pond and see if we can find some of these awesome reptiles! Meet at the Lakeside Museum Amphitheater in the picnic grounds
Itasca State Park

05/28/16 Pothole Exploration Tours
12 PM to 1 PM Discover how lakes of lava and gushing glacial waters formed the park’s unique potholes as you journey over, under and through world-renowned rock features on this naturalist-guided tour. This 45-minute walk includes some uneven terrain and stairs. Meet at the visitor center. Tours are offered at 12 PM each Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday from May 28 to September 5.
Interstate State Park

Upcoming . . .

June 9, 16, and 23, 2016 – Orienteering 2016 Summer Sprint Event REGISTER NOW

June 20 – 26 Celebrate Pollinator Week!
June 24 and 25 MN Nature Pollinator Restoration Volunteer Event SIGN UP NOW

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