Skip to main content

Cold and candles combine in Minnesota state parks

  • Author:
  • Updated:

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has released an extensive calendar that features outdoor events at Minnesota state parks and trails that will be lit by lanterns or luminaries.

The Associated Press reports a total of 30 events are scheduled. Highlights include the popular New Year's Eve candlelight walk at Fort Snelling State Park, an annual event that has drawn 1,500 participants in past years. An all-new candlelight walk on Jan. 3 along the Luce Line State Trail in Plymouth is also scheduled. There are several candlelight events on Valentine's Day weekend, including a Feb. 15 candlelight ski-snowshoe-walk at Wild River State Park along the St. Croix.

The family-friendly events feature ski, snowshoe and hiking events and many parks also provide refreshments for participants to enjoy while they warm up by a fire. People can rent or check out equipment at some parks.

The Minnesota Trails website notes that candlelit trails are typically short and flat, suitable for people of all ages and abilities. Rental equipment is available at some parks, but the DNR advises calling ahead to check availability. Skiers need a Minnesota Ski Pass if they are 16 or older. They're available at most state parks and vendors that sell fishing and hunting licenses, as well as online from the DNR.

The website for the Wisconsin State Parks System also lists a number of evening events for families who want to hike, snowshoe, or ski along a trail lit by the flickering flames of candles or tiki torches.

Earlier this year, the Department of Natural Resources reported that traffic at Minnesota's state parks declined in the first half of 2013 due to a late, wet spring.

Next Up


Animal Humane Society plans trailblazing new campus

Take a look inside the plans for a first-of-its-kind adoption center and animal care campus.


Minnesota reports 'concerning level' of syphilis cases

The Minnesota Department of Health says most of the cases are being discovered in the northern part of the state.

Flickr - police lights squad siren - Edward Kimmel

Airport police intercept 5,600 fentanyl pills headed to St. Cloud

Three were arrested following a police raid in St. Cloud.


Minnesota switches to weekly COVID updates

The weekly updates will be provided on Thursdays.

Screen Shot 2022-06-29 at 12.22.08 PM

Man shot inside Oakdale movie theater expected to survive

The 23-year-old victim underwent surgery and is recovering at the hospital.


Minnesota confirms second case of monkeypox virus

More cases are expected in the coming days and weeks, the health department says.


Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Wednesday, June 29

One of the newly reported deaths was a person aged 15-19 from Yellow Medicine County.

Screen Shot 2022-06-29 at 10.19.37 AM

Drone drops bag of candy near kids fishing

A black SUV quickly left the area afterwards.

FLickr - AL Franken 2016 - Lorie Shaull

Al Franken to bring comedy tour to Minneapolis

Acme Comedy is hosting the former senator in late August.


Alabama replaces Toby Keith as headliner at MN music festival

The Lakefront Music Festival is set to take place in Prior Lake on July 8-9.