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Hiking instead of shopping? MN parks will be free again on Black Friday

The DNR wants you to show visitors from out of town the beauty of Minnesota's parks.

This year's day-after-Thanksgiving bargains in Minnesota will again include an invitation to visit state parks without paying an entry fee.

All 75 of Minnesota's parks and recreation areas will waive their fees on Friday, Nov. 25, state officials said Monday.

This will be an encore to last year's first foray into waiving park fees on Black Friday. It proved to be a popular idea last year, with some visitors calling the parks a welcome alternative to busy shopping centers.

Which park to choose?

The DNR says most Minnesotans are within a half-hour drive of a state park. You can use their Park Finder to locate one near you.

But as part of Monday's announcement they also made some suggestions:

2016 marks the 125th anniversary of Minnesota's state park system, which began when the area around the Mississippi River headwaters was designated as Itasca State Park.

The DNR's numbers through September showed that overnight stays at state parks were up six percent this year and sales of year-round passes were up eight percent, Forum News Service reports.

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