The new year begins with as much as 20 inches of fresh snow creating ideal conditions for snowmobiling on hundreds of miles of groomed trails in the Park Rapids area. You’ll find a picture perfect scene anywhere you go.
If your New Year’s resolution is to celebrate winter, you’ve come to the right place.
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources updates snow and trail conditions in weekly reports posted after 2 p.m. every Thursday at www.dnr.state.mn.us/snow_depth/index.html. Winter lodging facilities offer a cozy place to warm up by the fire or in the pool, hot tub or sauna at day’s end. And you will find fine dining, fun shops and more to do, too. Our Chamber Website provides information about trail riding and cross country skiing possibilities as well as available lodging, dining and other things to see and do while you’re here.
Itasca State Park is listed as one of the state’s top 12 skiing destinations and for the first time this year, the park is grooming for skijoring: from the Norwegian Skikjøring = ski + Kjøring (driving). This is a sport in which a skier is drawn over the snow by a dog. If you enjoy cross country skiing as well as your dog, get outside this winter for some skijoring! Kick the winter blues as you kick your skis while being pulled by your dog along 11.2 km (7 miles) of packed trail specifically for skijoring.
Lantern lit skiing/snowshoeing events and naturalist programs also are on the January calendar at Itasca State Park. For details about winter activities in the park, call 218-699-7251 or go to www.dnr.state.mn.us/state_parks/itasca/index.html.
If you time your stay, you can sample one of the following fun winter activities:
Open houses are planned the first and third Sundays in January and February at Soaring Eagle Ski Trails north of Park Rapids. Bring your own skis or check out the club’s ski equipment. For more information, visit www.itascatur.org.
The Northern Light Opera Company will present “The Apothecary” at Long Lake Theater in Hubbard. Enjoy the production at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Jan. 21 and 22 and at 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 23. For details, go to www.northernlightopera.org.
Menahga’s Family Fishing Derby on Spirit Lake offers prizes and a day of fishing fun Saturday, Jan. 22. For more information, call Dave at 218-564-4940.
In the evening Saturday, Jan. 22, the Forest Riders Snowmobile Club hosts the annual SnoDeo Weekend Dance at the Eagles Club in Park Rapids.
And remember to buy a tickets for the 13th Annual Park Rapids American Legion Community Fishing Contest on Fish Hook Lake Saturday, Feb. 5. The grand prizes in this year’s raffle are a 2011 Chevy Colorado Truck and 2011 Chevy Cruze. Sixty other raffle prizes will be awarded. Polaris ATVs top the list of prizes in all four divisions: bluegill & crappie; northern, walleye & largemouth bass; perch; and rock bass. In conjunction with the fishing contest, the American Legion also sponsors a Medallion Treasure Hunt, starting Wednesday, Jan. 5. Tickets for the fishing contest at $40 each are available at the American Legion or call 218-732-3360. For more information, go to www.parkrapidsfishingderby.com.
A new year brings new beginnings. If you’ve resolved to celebrate winter and need help planning a memorable and affordable visit or if you have questions, call our friendly staff at 800-247-0054 to learn more.