News Release

Landowners sought for 2019 Minnesota Governor's Pheasant Hunting Opener

March 29, 2019

Minnesota landowners with grassland or wetlands within 20 miles of Austin are being sought to participate in the 2019 Minnesota Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener (GPHO) in October. 

Gov. Tim Walz will lead the event, taking place October 11-12, 2019, which showcases the many hunting, recreational, tourism, and community opportunities that the Austin area has to offer visitors. Gov. Walz has participated in past years, however, it will be his first Opener as Minnesota’s governor.

"I’m eager to celebrate this special tradition and am grateful that the people of Austin have offered to host the 2019 Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener," said Gov. Walz. "It’s an honor to carry this tradition forward, and I look forward to many fantastic memories being made in Austin this fall."

The planning committee is reaching out to landowners who may be willing to grant access to hunters involved in the event.

The land will be hunted only on October 12, 2019 as part of the Minnesota Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener. Invited hunters will be led by local hunter hosts, which may include local landowners. Ideal lands for the Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener include grasslands or wetlands that support pheasant populations.

Landowners interested in promoting hunting, conservation and tourism in the area by allowing hunting access for the event or seeking additional information should contact Justin Hanson at [email protected] or 507-434-2603 ext. 5, or stop by the Mower County Soil and Water Conservation District office at 1408 21st Ave NW, Austin, MN.

Initiated by Gov. Mark Dayton in 2011, the Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener highlights the local hunting, recreational, and tourism opportunities host communities have to offer visitors.

Explore Minnesota and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources are assisting Discover Austin and other local partners in planning the event.

Information and updates will be available at Follow along for social media updates using the hashtags #MNGPHO2019 and #OnlyinMN.