Skip to main content

Staycation benefits? State park visits, permit sales up

  • Author:
  • Updated:

Visits to Minnesota's state parks are on the rise and residents who vacation closer to home might be one reason why.

As the Associated Press reports, the Department of Natural Resources says sales of year-round park permits were up two percent last year and have climbed 21 percent in five years. Sales of single-day passes were also up in 2013 and have increased 15 percent since 2008.

In announcing the new numbers, the director of the DNR's Parks and Trails Division theorized that "staycations" have played a role in the increase. Courtland Nelson says the DNR has also tried to offer more programs and events during off-peak seasons.

Nelson says strong traffic later in the year helped compensate for a cold, wet spring that put a damper on park visits during the first half of 2013. He adds that the national parks and many states have reported declines in visitors.

Minnesota is not alone in seeing an increase, though. Montana and North Carolina both reported all-time highs in visitors.

Separately, the DNR announced that the 2014 park permit will feature a photo of a mountain bike trail at Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area that opened in 2011.

The Brainerd Dispatch reports photographer Aaron Hautala is president of the Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Crew. Of the view from the top of Miner's Mountain, Hautala says: “It’s a former mining site, and it’s visually breathtaking. It’s one of my favorite places to ride.”

The DNR put together a video promoting the mountain biking at Cuyuna Country soon after the 25-mile trail opened.

Next Up


Boy found dead in trunk of car in Mound was kindergartner

"It is horrifying and difficult to process a tragedy of this magnitude, especially in our close-knit community," the superintendent wrote.

Minneapolis police

Man found yelling for help after being shot in Minneapolis

The shooting occurred on the 800 block of Elwood Avenue North at around 9:15 p.m.

Screen Shot 2022-05-21 at 9.56.21 AM

Minneapolis North principal says she was fired, district says otherwise

“MPS requires schools to follow protocols in times like that and I did not,” Friestleben said.

Kris Richard Severin

Inmate who escaped Minnesota prison is captured

The inmate escaped Wednesday morning.

Brave New Comedy Workshop in downtown Minneapolis.

Brave New Workshop cancels shows due to COVID-19 cases

The shows were scheduled for Friday and Saturday at the Brave New Workshop Comedy Theatre.

Austin Retterath

Body of missing U of M student found in Mississippi River

Austin Retterath was last seen alive in the morning hours of May 8.

"Love" mural seen in St. Paul.

Summer mural events to bring together community, shine light on MN artists

The 2022 Chroma Zone Mural & Art Festival will take place this weekend in St. Paul's Creative Enterprise Zone, with ensuing events happening this summer.


Gallery: Remodeled lakeside home in Prior Lake on market for $2.8M

It offers privacy at the end of a dead-end road fronting onto Lower Prior Lake.

golden valley police department

Carjacking outside ice arena in Golden Valley under investigation

Golden Valley PD confirmed it received a report of a carjacking Monday evening.


Signs that MN Legislature could move to loosen liquor laws

A provision was approved by a legislature committee on Thursday but still awaits a final decision from the House and Senate.

US Bank Stadium

U.S. Bank Stadium looking to hire 400 part-time workers

A hiring fair will be held for the positions.