Isanti County's Springvale County Park was one of 14 regional parks to benefit from a recent Legacy Fund grant.

Each year, the Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission (GMRPTC) reviews applications for upgrades to designated parks and trails across the state, then forwards its recommendation to the Minnesota Legislature for approval through the Parks and Trails Legacy Fund. The Legislature has annually approved GMRPTC requests, since Legacy Funds are part of the 2008 Minnesota Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment and may only be spent to support parks and trails of regional or statewide significance.

“We were impressed with the many thoughtful and creative approaches we reviewed for broadening Minnesotans’ enjoyment of their beautiful parks and trails, which is why we’re recommending fully funding each of the 14 selected requests,” said GMRPTC Executive Director Renee Mattson.

Since its creation in 2014, the GMRPTC has awarded more than $72 million in grants to 109 projects in the state’s 74 designated parks and trails. Combined with $25.6 million in community matches to date, grants are used to fund infrastructure improvements, land acquisitions, new facilities, trail rehabilitation and more.

The 14 parks and trails recommended for $11,398,765 in Fiscal Year 2024 funding are below. District numbers in the grid refer to these geographic areas of Minnesota: 1-Northeast; 2-Northwest; 3-West Central; 4-East Central; 5-Southwest; 6-Southeast.

Grant Recipient – Award Amount – District

Cook County Mountain Bike Trail System – $400,000 – District 1

Duluth Waabizheshikana/Marten Trail – $1,493,434 – District 1

Mesabi Trail – $750,000 – District 1

Northerly Park-Northwest Angle – $70,000 – District 2

Detroit Lakes Detroit Mountain Recreation Area – $1,325,941 – District 3

Otter Tail County Phelps Mill County Park – $366,000 – District 3

Benton County Great River Park Complex – $797,555 – District 4

Isanti County Springvale County Park – $336,800 – District 4

Stearns County Kraemer Lake-Wildwood County Park – $1,175,846 – District 4

Stearns County Quarry Park & Nature Preserve – $170,250 – District 4

Redwood County Plum Creek Park – $818,539 – District 5

Sibley County Henderson Scenic Byway Regional Trail – $1,394,400 – District 5

Austin Jay C. Hormel Nature Center – $250,000 – District 6

Olmsted County Oxbow Park and Zollman Zoo – $2,050,000 – District 6

“Legacy Funding is a far-reaching gift that Minnesotans had the foresight to create to enhance their enjoyment of the outdoors,” said Mattson. “Without Legacy dollars, many of these projects simply would not happen or would take many years before coming to fruition.”

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