Treasured Places: An adventurous appreciation for members, volunteers, landowners, partners...and YOU!

We hope you'll join us for this year's Treasured Places celebration!

This is our annual event that moves around the state to give us the opportunity to showcase some of the amazing landowners and partners who tirelessly and generously labor to conserve really great land, and the volunteers who help make sure it stays that way.

We have a wonderful day planned:

10:30 Registration/welcome
11:00 Program
12:00 Lunch and mingle time
1:30 Your choice of optional activities

Option 1: "Nature for the Nation," a walking play about Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau
Option 2: A visit to the Richard Bresnahan studio and tour of the kiln. Richard is in the process of conserving his land with the Minnesota Land Trust, and is a St. John's Artist in Residence who creates pottery using materials sustainably harvested from the St. John's Arboretum
Option 3: A guided walk along Lake Sagatagan on the Chapel Trail, through the oldest stand of planted trees in Minnesota
Option 4: Guided viewing of the St. John's Illuminated Bible pages

To reserve your spot, please click here. We greatly appreciate purchasing your lunch ticket ahead of time; the play requires a ticket. The other optional afternoon activities are free.

Hope to see you there!


Radio Tower Bay Work Is Nearly Done!

Within the next few weeks, the Minnesota Land Trust will be wrapping up the dredging operation at Radio Tower Bay in the St. Louis River where, all told, approximately 115,000 cubic yards of wood waste is being removed.

Who wins?

First and foremost, the fish. Four feet of wood waste is not a nice place to hang out or have babies. We expect the river bed to re-naturalize, which will recreate the food and resting places the fish need. Turtles will also like their nice new riverbed home, since they burrow into the mud to wait out the cold winter months.

Who else? The birds! Over 230 species of birds depend on the St. Louis River estuary during migration. Grasses and other vegetation will begin to emerge in the cleaned-up Bay and the birds will definitely benefit from this more hospitable stopover spot.

People benefit as well. The St. Louis River Estuary is a treasure to more than a quarter million residents and 3.5 million tourists who live, work and play along its shores.

We're excited about completing this first major cleanup project in the St. Louis River Estuary. Stay tuned...there are more to come!


Once a site for war games, now a haven for herons

Herons have returned to Dick and Gloria Nord's land. Photo: Tom NordIn an area of rolling glacial hills, wetlands and pothole lakes, legions of migratory birds once darkened the skies in the fall and spring.

Today, the oak savannah, hardwood forests and wetlands have largely given way to housing developments and agricultural fields.

Now a small corner of Otter Tail and Becker Counties is conserved into perpetuity because of the perseverance and vision of landowners Dick and Gloria Nord.

But first, let’s tell the story of the herons.

Several years ago, the Nords were surprised to see Bradley Fighting Vehicles in the open field across the road from their property. The National Guard was conducting war game training exercises near a heron rookery, an activity that would cause nearly all of the 70 nesting pairs to abandon their roosts.

Click to read more ...


Southeast Blufflands Landowners: We're looking for some great acreage for conservation! 

Conserved land overlooking the Mississippi River on Apple Blossom Drive. Photo courtesy landowner George Howe.Southeastern Minnesota is as rich wildlife habitat as it is in aesthetic beauty.

Unlike any other part of the state, much of the Root River watershed and the greater Mississippi River Blufflands have been largely untouched by glaciers for 500,000 years. As a result of this unique geology, the Blufflands are home to diverse habitats and some of the most spectacular scenery in our state.

We've been working for years to protect key pieces of land in the Blufflands area of southeast Minnesota, and are currently looking for landowners who will help protect high quality habitat and scenic lands in this landscape.

Click to read more ...