News release: June is Great Outdoors Month in Minnesota

May 31, 2024

Gov. Tim Walz is encouraging Minnesotans to get out in nature and enjoy the state’s outstanding outdoor opportunities by proclaiming June 2024 as Great Outdoors Month. The proclamation points to the investments in renewing and evolving the state’s outdoor recreation system through the Get Out MORE (Modernize Outdoor Recreation Experiences) initiative as an example of the critical importance of outdoor recreation to Minnesotans.

“Minnesotans place a high value on outdoor recreation opportunities, and thanks to the Get Out MORE initiative we will soon be making updates and upgrades to these opportunities that will provide top-notch experiences for our visitors, no matter what type of outdoor experience they choose,” said Sarah Strommen, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources commissioner. “Great Outdoors Month allows us to celebrate the important work happening across state lands to modernize and bring additional accessibility to outdoor recreation opportunities.”

The Get Out MORE appropriation, passed by the state legislature and signed by Gov. Walz in 2023, provides funding for a variety of upgrades and enhancements to outdoor recreation in Minnesota, including modernizing boating access and camping infrastructure, enhancing fisheries and fishing infrastructure, and enhancing access and accessibility of outdoor recreation. There will be improved shore fishing opportunities, repaired roads, new signage and maps, improved trails and more adaptive equipment available to visitors which will all make opportunities to recreate in Minnesota’s great outdoors easier for more people. More information about these investments is available on the DNR’s Get Out MORE webpage.

During Great Outdoors Month, the DNR is offering special programs and incentives to encourage Minnesotans to get outdoors. The DNR will host a Free Park Day on Saturday, June 8, which allows free entrance to all state parks and recreation areas in Minnesota. There’s a state park or recreation area within 30 miles of most Minnesotans.

In addition to offering popular activities such as hiking, biking, camping, swimming, paddling and birding, a variety of state park interpretive programs are open to all visitors. Most interpretive programs are free, but some require pre-registration. Find state park programs online at the state parks and trails events calendar.

The entrance fee waiver for Free Park Day does not cover amenity or user fees for activities like camping or watercraft rentals. Details are on the Free Park Day webpage.

The annual Take a Kid Fishing weekend will be celebrated June 7-9. Minnesotans 16 or older who take a child 15 or younger fishing don't need a fishing license, making this another great way to spend time outside during Great Outdoors Month. More information is available on the Take a Kid Fishing webpage.

June 8-9 is also a no-registration riding weekend on motorized state and Grant-in-Aid trails. This weekend allows Minnesotans with an all-terrain vehicle registered for private or agricultural use to ride public trails without paying the registration fee. Find ATV trails on the trail locations map.

Those who want to get outdoors but don’t know how can learn skills for a future outdoor activity through the Minnesota Outdoor Skills and Stewardship webinar series. Several courses are offered in June, and there’s no cost to register. Find webinar descriptions and register on the DNR website.

Celebrated in Minnesota since 2008, Great Outdoors Month highlights the diversity of public lands throughout the state and the benefits they provide.

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