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Here's to You -- Fun in winter, both indoors and outdoors

Winter is here with its low temperatures, dark days, layered sweaters, lost gloves and sparkling snow. And while the cold may keep some citizens of other states inside, this is Minnesota, and we take the low temperatures, the snow and the layering as a sign to get outside and enjoy all the things northern Minnesota has to offer.

Tracks on the trail

The City of Bemidji parks staff keeps the West Shore Trail swept and clear all winter long. You can also take the family out for a little cross country skiing on the Montebello ski trail, located in the new City Park. There are also two Saturday snowshoeing lessons at City Park. Enjoy the trails along the shore and in the parks all winter long.

Hit the slopes

Ski or snowboard? Have you always wanted to try? You can join the Bemidji Parks and Recreation Department at Buena Vista Ski Area for ski and snowboarding clinics. These one-night clinics are designed for all levels. Both the ski clinic and snowboarding clinic will include an introduction to the sport followed by a lesson and time on the hill.

Play a game

Open broomball play begins in January at City Park, and with its open, no-registration format it is a great way to get out on the ice and play a winter classic. Both the Nymore Park and City Park outdoor rinks have a pleasure rink for those that just want to skate. There are also hockey rinks at these parks. If nets are not out when you arrive, just ask the rink attendant to help bring them out.

Sometimes the cold temps can get us down and make going outside seem like a chore, so in case you get a case of the winter blues, remember that the City of Bemidji Parks and Recreation Department has lots of great things indoors for you this winter, too.


This year, the Parks and Recreation Department is offering a new program at the Sanford Center. Sanford Steps is an indoor free walking program. On Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, the Sanford Center will open and offer a walking path that will include fun fitness intervals at the end of each corridor.


Get off the couch and onto the track with the couch to 5k running program! This program is perfect for beginning runners and those runners who need a little extra motivation during the winter. With three weekly workouts that average about 30 minutes, in two months you will be running a 5k! Group runs provide the motivation, and our personal trainer provides the answer to all your running questions.

Try something new

The Passport for Fitness program provides you with the best fitness classes that Bemidji has to offer. For a low rate, you can attend as many classes as the Passport calendar can pack in.

We have the cure for the winter blues, so for more information on these programs and many others, contact the Parks and Recreation Department at 333-1857 or or check our website at

Samantha Parker is the event coordinator for the Bemidji Parks and Recreation Department.