The Friends of Itasca State Park is a support group for Itasca State Park. This all-volunteer group raises money for projects that are needed at the park. For example, the group has raised money for playgrounds for various location around the park. We restored the wicker furniture at the main lodge and many other projects around the park. Most recently the Friends helped fund a fishing pier at Ozawindib Lake and resting benches along the park’s biking trails. Currently we are raising money for an interactive multi-media gallery about the Mississippi River in the visitors’ center and have begun a permanent endowment fund for longer term funding projects.
The Itasca State Park Citizens Association had its first meeting in 1993 with Rollis Bishop as president. It was organized by some of the members of the pre-existing Itasca State Park Advisory Board as a separate group that could take a more active role in helping the park. The Citizens Association organized volunteer activities and raised money for playground equipment, furniture restoration, the reproduction and framing of historical pictures of the park, and other projects. In about 1998, the old Itasca State Park Advisory Board ceased activity and transferred the balance of its funds to the Citizens Association – effectively joining the Citizens Association. At about that time the group started calling itself the Friends of Itasca State Park, but did not officially change the name until 2002.
MAJOR GOALS for Friends of Itasca
- assist in raising funds, as well as providing actual labor for special projects for Itasca Park as determinted by Park Administration.
- assist the Park Resource Specialist in projects that improve the environmental integrity of the Park.
- be an advocate for the Park on any issue found to be important to the Park by contacting state legislators.
- communicate with local businesses to promote harmony in the surrounding business community.
- promote and help preserve the historical significance of the Park and the surrounding area.
- be a source of information to the Park administration by providing input on various Park issues and projects.
- coordinate efforts and activities with other State Parks, State agencies and organizations interested in promoting tourism in Minnesota.
- be an active participant in the activities offered at Itasca Park
- provide awareness to the citizens of our country as to the significance of Itasca State Park.
- improve the support base of the organization through increased membership.
You can help us achieve these goals by becoming a member – click HERE to join.
Tim Holzkamm – President
Luann Hurd-Lof – Vice President
John La Fond – Treasurer
Don Tschudi – Secretary
Harold Fenske – Web guy
Honorary Board Members
Bill an Anne Sliney