MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - As more people are going on break or out of school, park officials and legislators are asking that they step out of their homes and take in some fresh air.
In fact Gov. Tim Walz has proclaimed the month of June, “Great Outdoors Month," as an effort to celebrate the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and push people to get their daily dose of Vitamin D.
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Minneopa Area Naturalist Scott Kudelka said the Minnesota department is promoting their own statewide fun by introducing the “School’s Out, Camp Out Challenge."
The challenge asks families to camp out at all state parks this weekend, filling them up, and getting out of the house.
“This is just a great way we want to introduce new visitors to Minnesota State Parks, " said Kudelka.
"So the idea is now that school’s out, it’s time to go out and enjoy yourself at our various state parks, we have 75 of them.”
Some families were already out and about at Minneopa State Park on Friday morning, taking in all Mother Nature has to offer.
Father, Husband and U.S.D.A. Forest Service Employee Craig Ohlhauser said bringing his family out is a nice break from everyday life.
"It’s just important to get out and breathe some fresh air and experience something different than what the normal day offers them around the house, " said Ohlhauser.
There is hope for many park visits this weekend, so for those looking to be one with nature, do not worry about overcrowded areas, there are procedures set up for your benefit.
“All our campsites are on a reservation system, so you need to probably check ahead especially for your favorite state parks," said Kudelka.
"But a lot of times our least favorite state parks, or least visited state parks, don’t get as many visitors and that’s a great opportunity to go to a campsite there.”
Kudelka said being outside, looking at fascinating creatures, and exploring the beauty in all state parks is something everyone should experience.
“Just to get away from the daily life and just you know rushing around here and there, you know for example here at Minneopa tomorrow[ Saturday] we’ll have two performances," said Kudelka.
"The Owatonna Zoo talking about amphibians and reptiles, and so you just never know what you’re going to experience at a state park.”
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources also continues its tradition of free admission at all state parks this Saturday, making this weekend accessible to everyone.
For more on where to reserve your space, click here: https://reservemn.usedirect.com/MinnesotaWeb/