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Where Beauty & Nature Intersect

January 2022 Blog

January 2022
A winter wonderland awaits

If your New Year’s resolution is to celebrate winter, it’s go time. The new year brings snow to play in whether you want to go snowmobiling on hundreds of miles of groomed trails, cross-country ski, navigate the woods on snowshoes or build a snowman. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources updates snow and trail conditions in weekly reports posted after 2 p.m. every Thursday at . With off and on relatively mild temperatures, lake ice conditions are inconsistent. Caution is always in order. Check
with bait shop owners or neighbors to find out where the ice is safe and the best spots to snag a fresh catch.

If you time your stay, you can sample these fun winter activities. Itasca State Park offers a new Twinkle Light Trail for walking, snowshoeing and skiing. It is illuminated daily from dusk to 10 p.m. at Bear Paw Campground. For details go to A First Day Hike welcomes snowshoers to explore the Dr. Roberts Trail from 1 to 3 p.m. on New Year’s Day. Meet at the Jacob V. Brower Visitor Center in the park. Itasca’s Lantern Lit Snowshoe or Walk event is scheduled between 5 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 8. Meet at the Mary Gibbs Mississippi Headwaters Center in Itasca State Park. A limited number of snowshoes are available at the park Visitor Center for use during the programs and are first-come-first-serve. Call ahead at 218-699-7254 to reserve a pair. Or learn to snowshoe at a beginner’s class from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. Jan. 22.

The Itascatur Outdoor Activity Club reports the Soaring Eagle ski and snowshoe trails are open, the lot is plowed and the trails are groomed and ready to go. Check at or on the club’s Facebook page. Soaring Eagle is located at 25467 US Hwy 71, 8 miles north of Park Rapids, and across from the Eagle View Golf Course. Racers will traverse forests and lakes and experience the natural beauty of the area in the Park Rapids Heartland 200 USXC snowmobile racing event Saturday, Jan. 29 and Sunday, Jan. 30. Races start at 9 a.m. both days at the field near Salvage Depot and the AmericInn north of state Hwy. 34 or on Fish Hook Lake, depending on snow conditions. The Park Rapids Lakes Area Chamber is coordinating this year’s event which draws visitors from Canada, Michigan, Wisconsin and the Dakotas. Whether the races are run in the woods or on the lake, this is a fun spectator sport as well. For more information, go to

Menahga’s Family Fishing Derby on Spirit Lake offers an afternoon of fishing fun from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 15. A $5 ticket gets you on the ice and enters you in a drawing for an Ice Castle Fish House. A $500 cash prize will be awarded for the third largest fish caught. The Menahga Civic & Commerce Association sponsors this family friendly event.

The popular winter event for book lovers is returning to Beagle and Wolf Books & Bindery the evening of Saturday, Jan. 15 and the morning of Sunday, Jan. 16 at the store. Night In/Morning In will have everything you love about the event: The company of other book lovers, recommendations of great books, prizes, goody bags filled with bookish swag and refreshments. For more information, go to Tickets will soon be on sale for the 23rd Annual Park Rapids American Legion Community Fishing Contest on Fish Hook Lake from 1 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 5. Your ticket gives you access to the ice fishing contest and the raffle. Our winter lodging facilities are open no matter what Mother Nature brings. Warm up by the fire or in the pool, hot tub or sauna and enjoy the area’s fine dining and fun shops.

The 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. If you’re ready for winter fun 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.


Park Rapids Lakes Area Chamber, a Partner of Explore Minnesota Minnesota Chamber of Commerce Northwoods Bank, Partner of Park Rapids Lakes Area Chamber Citizen's Bank in Park Rapids, MN Park Rapids Downtown Business Association Park Rapids Lakes Area Convention & Visitor's Bureau