PR | With 7 great events and snow totals 50 percent ahead of last year, 2019 is a great year for snowmobiling on the Gunflint Trail near Grand Marais

Women in helmets on snowmobile hugging

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

With 7 great events and snow totals 50 percent ahead of last year, 2019 is a great year for snowmobiling on the Gunflint Trail near Grand Marais

GRAND MARAIS, MINN. (Jan. 24, 2019)  — This year, outdoor adventure seekers traveling to the North Shore and Gunflint Trail are in for a treat, because snowfall totals in the region have already surpassed previous years by over 50 percent.

It’s a good year to be a snowmobiler as Snowmobile Trails are being cleared around the clock by teams of committed volunteers.  For more information on local trail conditions visit: https://www.visitcookcounty.com/winter-trail-conditions/

From January to March, visitors can participate or join in the fun as spectators at any of the upcoming snowmobile and fishing events throughout Cook County. A crowd favorite for many years are the many “Drag Races” which are timed heats with radar guns.

 Saturday, Jan. 26        Skyport Lodge Drag Races at Devil Track Lake  – https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/devil-track-snowmobile-drag-races/

Saturday, Feb. 2         Annual Snowmobile Fun Run on Gunflint Trail- https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/snowmobile-fun-run/

Saturday, Feb. 9         16th Annual Snowarama at Grand Portage Lodge and Casino – https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/snowarama-at-grand-portage-lodge-and-casino/

Saturday, Feb. 16       Hungry Jack Drag Races at Hungry Jack Lodge – https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/hungry-jack-drag-races/

Saturday, Mar. 2        Annual Trout Derby Hosted by the Cook County Ridge Riders https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/annual-trout-derby/

Saturday, Mar. 9        Poplar Haus Drag Races at Poplar Lake https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/drag-races-at-poplar-lake/

Friday, Apr. 27 – Saturday, Apr. 28       Midwest Extreme Snowmobile Challenge- https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/midwest-extreme-snowmobile-challenge/

 

The Midwest Extreme Snowmobile Challenge is the best end to any snowmobile season. A two-day event at Lutsen Mountains and your chance to feel like a pro rider. Organized by COR Powersports, entrants in the Hillclimb will face the steepest course in the Midwest. The top 3 riders of this event will earn spots at the Jackson Hole World Championship Hillclimbs. This is an event not to be missed. More information on registration and lodging can be viewed here:

https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/midwest-extreme-snowmobile-challenge/

 

About Visit Cook County

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #donorthmn, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

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Women in helmets on snowmobile hugging

 

Lynn Nelson | LINPR phone# 612-990-0126 email: lnelson.linpr@gmail.com //// Linda Jurek | Visit Cook County MN phone# 218-387-2788 email: linda@visitcookcounty.com

PR | Snowfall on the North Shore & Gunflint Trail is 50 percent greater than last year at this time

Snowfall on the North Shore & Gunflint Trail is 50 percent greater than last year at this time

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 Snowfall on the North Shore & Gunflint Trail is 50 percent greater than last year at this time

 GRAND MARAIS, MINN. (Jan. 10, 2019) – While most of the state of Minnesota is in a snow drought, the North Shore and Gunflint Trail is experiencing an abundance of early snow with totals to date an average of 50 percent greater than previous years.

Snow totals to date as compared to last year at this time (Oct. – Jan. 10):

                                                2017/18          2018/19          % increase

Lutsen Mountains:                  39”                  59.5”               +52%

Central Gunflint Trail:           25.25”             68.53”             +85%

Upper Gunflint Trail:               33.5”               42”                  +25%

With more snow forecast for this week, the conditions are only expected to get better. The average winter season receives about 91.5” of snow, with the snowiest months of February and March yet to come.

“We are seeing a significant increase in website traffic,” says Linda Jurek, executive director of Visit Cook County. “Being the #1 source for local ski and snowmobile trail conditions, visitors are looking to us to find the most comprehensive condition reports, so they can make the most out of their vacation.”

On the cross-country and snowmobile trails, volunteers have been working around the clock to groom and clear trails for recreation. “It’s a labor of love” says Jeff Lynch, owner of Sawtooth Outfitters in Tofte and member of the Sugarbush Trail Association. “I have been involved with maintaining the Sugarbush cross-country ski trails for 17 years because I love to use them. Easy access to outdoor activities is part of what makes winter great in northeastern Minnesota.”

At Lutsen Mountains, the seasonal snowmaking season is nearly complete. With a solid base of 30-60” on the primary runs and 12-20” base in side country, the conditions are nearing their prime. The alpine season extends all the way into April, and on some occasions into May.

For complete grooming and condition updates visit:

https://www.visitcookcounty.com/winter-trail-conditions/

Or contact the Visitor Center in Grand Marais to speak to an information specialist:

Visit Cook County MN

Phone: (218) 387-2524

Email: info@visitcookcounty.com

Find photos and videos of recent snowfalls:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/5sw9j86nofujnlv/AAA9lkY9EOQ8e4zy3xplNyKFa?dl=0

 

 About Visit Cook County

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #donorthmn, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

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Photo: Snowfall - tailwagging 10inches fell on Jan.7 2019- credit Kjersti Vick

Snowfall – tailwagging 10inches fell on Jan.7 2019- credit Kjersti Vick

 

 

Media Stories:

http://www.netnewsledger.com/2019/01/11/north-shore-and-gunflint-trail-experiencing-50-more-snow/

https://bringmethenews.com/minnesota-weather/want-snow-theyre-buried-in-crazy-amounts-on-minnesotas-north-shore

https://www.boreal.org/2019/01/11/187342/want-snow-theyre-buried-in-crazy-amounts-on-minnesotas-north-shore?fbclid=IwAR24OE3nn0KItfG-nESZB8AKlHsE6KwRqO3PgLuHizRB7TwAtZCq4nqhC3g

MEDIA CONTACTS Lynn Nelson | LIN Public Relations, Inc. PH# 612.990.0126 email: lnelson.linpr@gmail.com Linda Jurek | Visit Cook County PH# 218.387.2788 email: linda@visitcookcounty.com

PR | 2019 Gunflint Mail Run Results – winners of 12-dog and 8-dog races

PR | 2019 Gunflint Mail Run Results – winners of 12-dog and 8-dog races

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Winners of 12-dog and 8-dog races are in

Warm weather and close races were highlight of 2019 Gunflint Mail Run Sled Dog Race

Participants of the 2019 Gunflint Mail Run

Cook County, Minn. – Jan. 6, 2019 — The Gunflint Mail Run kicked off the start of the dog-sled racing season in Cook County yesterday. The original event, which is a 12-dog, 100-mile race included two runs, approximately 50 miles each, over a two-day stretch, and an eight-dog shorter and faster race (65 miles).

The race started and finished at Trail Center Lodge, 7611 Gunflint Trail, on Poplar Lake, Grand Marais, Minn.  (Trail Center Lodge is approximately 30 miles up the Gunflint Trail).  See https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/gunflint-mail-run-sled-dog-race/ for more details.

According to race director Sarah Hamilton of Trail Center Lodge, “the weather was fantastic for the spectators. The dogs would have preferred it colder, but they did great. We are posting additional photos and videos on our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/GunflintMailRun

12-dog teams

Here are the results of 2019 100-mile 12-dog race:

1.) Ryan Redington, Skagway, AK 08:26:35
2.) Ryan Anderson, Ray, Minn. 09:02:56
3.) Erin Redington, Skagway, AK 09:16:51
4.) Frank Moe, Hovland, Minn. 09:38:17
5.) Blake Freking, Finland, Minn. 09:38:21
6.) Sarah Keefer, Minneapolis, Minn. 09:50:51
7.) Ward Wallin, Two Harbors, Minn. 09:58:40
8.) Jennifer Freking, Finland, Minn. 10:29:05
9.) Dennis Tremblay, Saint-Michel-des-Saints, Que., Canada 10:32:30
10.) Mary Manning, Hovland, Minn. 10:32:49
11.) Erin Altemus, Grand Marais, Minn. 10:33:06
12.) Daman Ramaker, Fountain, Minn. 11:53:06
13.) Cindy Gallea, Wykoff, Minn. 11:53:24
14.) Lynn Dohrmann, Wykoff, Minn.
Dusty Klaven, Togo, Minn. (scratched)

8-dog teams:

1.) Martha Schouweiler, Irma, Wis. 5:39:10
2.) Joanna Oberg, Grand Marais, Minn. 5:39:12
3.) Rita Wehseler, Tofte, Minn. 5:56:03

4.) Brain Bergen, Sioux Lookout, Ont. Canada 6:10:55

5.) Andrea DeBoer, Grand Marais, Minn. 6:34:39

6.) Julia Cross, Hovland, Minn. 6:36:37

7.) Steve Peterson, Granby, Colo. 6:49:12

8.) Matt Schmidt, Grand Marais, 6:59:23

9.) Mark Flakne, Maple Lake, MN, 7:03:10

10.) Talia Martens, Brule, WI, 7:10:46

11.) Sarah Smith, Sioux Lookout, Ont. CA, 7:13:43

12.) Travis Vanderhoof, Shell Lake, WI, 7:25:45

13.) Darcy Stanley-Nord, Milaca, MN, 7:35:56

14.) Amy Flakne, Maple Lake, MN, Scratch

Next up: John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon Jan. 27 – 29

The 35th John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon will run Sunday, Jan. 27 – Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019. It is scheduled to start at Billy’s Bar, 3502 Tischer Road, Duluth, Minn. and end at Grand Portage Lodge and Casino, 70 Casino Drive, Grand Portage, Minn.

The John Beargrease has been shortened this year to 300 miles, but is still a qualifier for the famed “Iditarod” in Alaska and remains the longest sled dog race in the lower 48 states.  Two additional race legs are scheduled during the John Beargrease, the Beargrease 120, the most popular competitive mid-distance race in North America, and the Beargrease 40, a recreational class race.  The Beargrease 40 will end at Two Harbors, Minn. Gravel Pit on Sunday, Jan. 27, which will also the serve as an alternate marathon start location, if there are low levels of snow in Duluth, Minn.  The Beargrease 120 will end at Lutsen Mountains, 467 Ski Hill Road, Lutsen, Minn. on Monday, Jan. 28.  See https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/john-beargrease-sled-dog-marathon/ for more details.

About Visit Cook County

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #donorthmn, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

 

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Participants of the 2019 Gunflint Mail Run

Participants of the 2019 Gunflint Mail Run

 

 

Media stories:

https://www.duluthnewstribune.com/sports/other/4553023-redington-wins-third-straight-gunflint-mail-run

Mushers, organizers look forward to changes in John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon

http://www.netnewsledger.com/2019/01/04/gunflint-mail-run-kicks-off-dogsledding-season/

SLIDESHOW: Dozens of teams prepare for Cook County’s Gunflint Mail Run

https://www.wtip.org/2019-sled-dog-racing-season-coming-soon-cook-county

PR | Exceptional Ski Conditions in Northeastern Minnesota Winter Storm Drops 24 Inches of Snow on Lutsen Mountains

Lutsen Mountains blanketed in snow after 24" of snow falls in 24 hours - 12.28.18

Lutsen Mountains blanketed in snow after 24″ of snow falls in 24 hours – 12.28.18

Exceptional Ski Conditions in Northeastern Minnesota Winter Storm Drops 24 Inches of Snow on Lutsen Mountains

 Lutsen Mountains – December 28, 2018A winter storm that brought rain and sleet to much of Minnesota and Wisconsin was all snow and smiles for winter enthusiasts on the North Shore.  In total, 24” fell in the higher elevations at Lutsen Mountains over the past two days, fueled in part by northeast winds over Lake Superior that created ‘Lake Effect’ augmentation of the storm.

“The weather forecasters had this one on the money,” says Jim Vick, marketing director for Lutsen Mountains.  “The hour it arrived, the rate of snowfall and the hour it moved out were remarkably accurate.  The only thing missed is how the cluster of four mountains at Lutsen amplified the lake effect, exceeding their storm total forecast by 6 inches.”

The storm was well timed for the arrival of a holiday week crowd.  Lutsen’s primary terrain was 80% open, due to exceptional snowmaking weather in November and early December.  Yesterday’s snowfall adds to a three foot deep base and pushes additional terrain to completion.  Yesterday alone an additional 10 runs were added to the open list with more to follow soon.

New live webcam gives immediate view of conditions

A live web camera was installed at the summit of Eagle Mountain this fall and provides a high resolution peek at current conditions.  Along with tracking snowfall, grooming and weather, the camera has provided a spectacular archive of sunrises over Lake Superior and sunsets over the Sawtooth Mountains.  Connect to the camera at www.lutsen.com/livecam

Images from the past couple days can be found here:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/k762y3y5khndvtt/AABshwURNvb81AZCEJ437pdDa?dl=0

 

About Lutsen Mountains: Lutsen Mountains is located in Lutsen, Minn., along the North Shore of Lake Superior. Four interconnected mountains, 95 runs and 1000 feet of vertical make it the largest ski resort in Mid-America.

For additional information, visit lutsen.com or follow us on Facebook

at facebook.com/LutsenMountains and on Twitter at twitter.com/lutsenmountains.

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MEDIA CONTACTS

Jim Vick | Lutsen Mountains                     Lynn Nelson | LIN Public Relations, Inc.

218.406.1300                                                  612.990.0126

JimVick@Lutsen.com                                  lnelson.linpr@gmail.com

Nothing but smiles on a powder day at Lutsen Mountains on 12/28/18

Nothing but smiles on a powder day at Lutsen Mountains on 12/28/18

PR | Third annual Hygge Festival to be hosted in Grand Marais Feb. 8 – 14 (pronounced hoo-gah and is Danish for cozy)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Third annual Hygge Festival to be hosted in Grand Marais Feb. 8 – 14

(pronounced hoo-gah and is Danish for cozy)

 

Cook County, Minn. – December XX, 2018 — Nowhere else can visitors experience winter beauty, adventure, relaxation and coziness, like they can in the little harbor village of Grand Marais on Lake Superior at the third annual Hygge Festival, Friday, Feb. 8 – Thursday, Feb. 14, 2019.

 

Throughout the week, visitors can indulge in a classic North Shore winter vacation across the county with hygge-themed activities like dogsledding, stargazing, cross-country skiing, and fireside gatherings at well-known northern Minnesota lodges, including the Gunflint Lodge and Cascade Lodge.

 

According to Linda Jurek, executive director of Visit Cook County in Grand Marais, “hygge encourages us to embrace all of winter’s pleasures: Snowshoeing through the woods with someone special, feeling the fresh snow crunch beneath you, savoring each snowflake that lands on your eyelash, that’s hygge.”

 

The third annual festival will feature some new events, and some returning hygge favorites:

  • Fatbiking Up the River with Grand Marais Mayor, Jay Arrowsmith-DeCoux
  • Card writing and knitting by the fire
  • Cross-country skiing tour at twilight
  • Fireplace tour featuring some of the most historic fireplaces in Cook County

 

  • Hygge themed menus
  • Live music, including acapella group SVEA singing Scandinavian folk songs
  • Mukluk ball at Voyageur Brewing Company with live music by Plucked Up String Band

 

For more information on the third annual hygge festival and for dates and times, please check out: https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/hygge-festival/

 

About Visit Cook County

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #visitcc, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

 

Linda Jurek | Visit Cook County | linda@visitcookcounty.com | (218) 387-2788

PR | Premier Winter cycling: Third Annual Norpine Fat Bike Classic Jan.5

Premier Winter cycling: Third Annual Norpine Fat Bike Classic Jan. 5 in Lutsen, Minn.

 

Cook County, Minn. – Nove. 19, 2018 – Registration is now open for the Norpine Fat Bike Classic, Cook County’s premier winter cycling event happening Saturday, Jan. 5.  The Norpine offers riders a long 24-mile course leaving at 10 a.m. and a shorter 16-mile course leaving at 10:05 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 5 starting at Superior National clubhouse located at 5731 Highway 62, Lutsen, Minn.

 

“Roll into 2019 on the shores of Lake Superior for a frosty, fun filled weekend with Friday night festivities, including beer and wine tasting,” said Peter Spencer, race director of the Norpine Fat Bike Classic.  “There’s an outdoor adventure for everyone in beautiful Cook County – dogsledding, snowshoeing, Nordic, and cross-country skiing, and of course, fat biking!!”

 

Riders will make their way across established Norpine cross-country ski trails, while passing through Cook County’s wilderness landscape on the North Coast of Lake Superior on 3.7-inch or wider tires.

 

45NRTH Post Race Party at Lutsen Resort form 1:30 – 5 p.m. includes a free BBQ, Castle Danger beverages and live music, as well as awards for the top five male and female finishers in the long and short course.

 

For more information on riding or spectating, please visit: https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/norpine-fat-bike-classic/

 

Bikers and their families and fans also can enjoy the annual Gunflint Mail Run Sled Dog Race Saturday, Jan. 5 – Sunday, Jan. 6. The Gunflint Mail Run kicks off the start of dogsledding season in Cook County, and features two races, the original event, which is a 12-dog, 100-mile race that includes two runs, approximately 50 miles each, over a two-day stretch, and an eight-dog shorter and faster race (65 miles). The race will start and finish at Trail Center Lodge, 7611 Gunflint Trail, on Poplar Lake, Grand Marais, Minn.  (For non-locals, Trail Center Lodge is approximately 30 miles up the Gunflint Trail).  See https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/gunflint-mail-run-sled-dog-race/ for more details.

 

About Visit Cook County

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #visitcc, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

Linda Jurek | Visit Cook County | linda@visitcookcounty.com | (218) 387-2788

PR | First Annual Dark Skies Festival to be Held Dec. 14-15 in Cook County, Minn.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

First Annual Dark Skies Festival to be Held Dec. 14-15 in Cook County, Minn.

 

Cook County, Minn. – Nov. 11, 2018 — Head north to celebrate some of the nation’s darkest skies on Dec. 14-15. The Dark Sky Festival is the first annual celebration of its kind in the Arrowhead Region, and it will feature presentations from Minnesota’s Dark Sky experts.

 

University of Minnesota – Duluth Faculty Administrator Joel Halvorson, faculty researcher Jim Rock, and their students will bring back the traveling planetarium that visited Cook County in August. They will make stops at area schools, before putting on public presentations over the weekend. On Friday, Dec. 14, starting at 5 p.m., visitors can head to Voyageur Brewing Company, where the GeoDome will be set up until 9 p.m.

 

Halvorson will address such topics as Traveling the Cosmos, uncovering the Dark Secrets of Dark Matter, and the 50th anniversary of the iconic Earthrise photo–our planet’s first selfie. There will be telescopes set up outside to view the night sky during the famous winter Geminids Meteor Shower, which will be at peak during the festival.

 

On Saturday, there will be a night packed full of presentations at North House Folk School in Grand Marais. From 5-6:30 p.m., Cook County photographers Travis Novitsky and Bryan Hansel will have a friendly duel of nightscape images. Novitsky and Hansel are the two most experienced night sky photographers in the Midwest. They’ll also talk about why they love night sky photography, and what drives them to travel the lonely, dark, roads of Cook County in the middle of the night, while sharing images from their night sky adventures. This will be one of the most unforgettable presentations of the year, and you don’t want to miss it.

 

At 6:30 p.m., Jim Rock will talk about Native Skies: the stars and indigenous people. Halvorson and Rock have a unique and expansive presentation that allows viewers to learn about the stars in ways they’ve never imagined. After the presentations, there will be a community bonfire outside of North House for more stargazing and s’mores, weather permitting.

 

Everyone is then invited to Voyageur Brewing for more time with Halvorson and his students in the GeoDome, which will be available to the public until the brewery closes at 10 p.m.

 

 

 

About Visit Cook County 

 

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #donorthmn, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

Linda Jurek | Visit Cook County | linda@visitcookcounty.com | (218) 387-2788

January is Dogsledding Month in Cook County, Minn

John Beargrease logo

Gunflint Mail Run Jan 5 – 6 and John Beargrease Jan. 27 – 29

 

Cook County, Minn. – Oct. 12, 2018 — January is a time for residents and visitors to celebrate modern-day mushers and their canine athlete companions at the Gunflint Mail Run Sled Dog Race Saturday, Jan. 5 – Sunday, Jan. 6, 2019 and the 35th running of the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon Sunday, Jan. 27 – Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019.

 

“We encourage visitors to come and watch the dog sled races,” says, Linda Jurek, executive director for Visit Cook County.  “We are really excited to have both the Beargrease 120 and the Beargrease Marathon end in Cook County this year. The marathon will end at Grand Portage Casino, and the Beargrease 120 will end at Lutsen Mountains.

 

“Visitors who have a dog-sled race on their bucket list can also visit our local kennels, where they can learn about the dogs, the dog-sled racing sport, and even make a run on a dog sled themselves. Both dog-sled races are looking for volunteers, which is a great way to get an up-close look at this exciting winter sport.”

 

Gunflint Mail Run Sled Dog Race

 

The Gunflint Mail Run kicks off the start of dogsledding season in Cook County, and features two races, the original event, which is a 12-dog, 100-mile race that includes two runs, approximately 50 miles each, over a two-day stretch, and an eight-dog shorter and faster race (65 miles). The race will start and finish at Trail Center Lodge, 7611 Gunflint Trail, on Poplar Lake, Grand Marais, Minn.  (For non-locals, Trail Center Lodge is approximately 30 miles up the Gunflint Trail).  See https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/gunflint-mail-run-sled-dog-race/ for more details.

 

John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon

 

The 35th John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon will run Sunday, Jan. 27 – Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019. It is scheduled to start at Billy’s Bar, 3502 Tischer Road, Duluth, Minn. and end at Grand Portage Lodge and Casino, 70 Casino Drive, Grand Portage, Minn.

 

The John Beargrease has been shortened this year to 300 miles, but is still a qualifier for the famed “Iditarod” in Alaska and remains the longest sled dog race in the lower 48 states.  Two additional race legs are scheduled during the John Beargrease, the Beargrease 120, the most popular competitive mid-distance race in North America, and the Beargrease 40, a recreational class race.  The Beargrease 40 will end at Two Harbors, Minn. Gravel Pit on Sunday, Jan. 27, which will also the serve as an alternate marathon start location, if there are low levels of snow in Duluth, Minn.  The Beargrease 120 will end at Lutsen Mountains, 467 Ski Hill Road, Lutsen, Minn. on Monday, Jan. 28

 

About the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon

Headquartered in Duluth, Minn., the mission of the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon is to conduct the best long-distance race in North America in a culturally sensitive manner, and to promote the sport of dog mushing.  To learn more about this nonprofit, please visit www.beargrease.com.

 

About Visit Cook County

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #visitcc, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

 

Linda Jurek | Executive Director Visit Cook County | linda@visitcookcounty.com | 218.387.2788

PR | The North Shore Has A New Fall Color Cam – Lutsen Mountains unveils its brand new mountaintop HD webcam

The North Shore Has A New Fall Color Cam

Lutsen Mountains unveils its brand new mountaintop HD webcam

Lutsen – Sept. 26, 2018 – Tracking the changes in fall foliage is an event in Minnesota as we move into peak fall.  With fall color on the North Shore a primary attraction, Lutsen Mountains recently installed a webcam at the summit of Eagle Mountain that captures  a high-resolution image every 10 minutes.  The images are archived to offer a time-lapse comparison day to day, week to week, and moving forward, year to year.  With its high vantage point and 360 degree view, the images show the maple canopy of the Sawtooth Mountain ridgeline, the birch and aspen in the Poplar River Valley, and 100 mile vistas over Lake Superior.

As a primary source of visitor information, we thought you might be interested in this new opportunity to monitor fall color on the North Shore.  Feel free to share the link: lutsen.roundshot.com or with a right-click you can capture a screenshot of an image for posting. If you are posting an image from the livecam, please photo credit:  Lutsen Mountains.

About Lutsen Mountains: Lutsen Mountains Ski & Summer Resort is located in Lutsen, Minn., along the North Shore of Lake Superior. Lutsen is the largest ski & snowboard resort in the Midwest.  An Alpine Slide offers family fun May – October and the Summit Express Gondola offers sightseeing rides year around. For additional information, visit lutsen.com or follow us on Facebook at facebook.com/LutsenMountains and on Twitter at twitter.com/lutsenmountains.

About Visit Cook County

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #donorthmn, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

 

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2018 Lutsen Mountains New Webcam

Keep tabs on the fall color status by checking the new Lutsen Mountains webcam. Photo credit: Lutsen Mountains.

Jim Vick, Marketing Director at Lutsen Mountains Phone# 218-406-1300 Email: jim@lutsen.com

PR | Grand Marais/Cook County Airport unveils new airport facility and 5,000-foot runway on Sept. 22

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 Grand Marais/Cook County Airport unveils new airport facility and 5,000-foot runway on Sept. 22

Cook County, Minn. – Sept. 12, 2018 – The Cook County Airport Commission will hold an open house at the Grand Marais/Cook County Airport to unveil a new airport facility and 5,000-foot runway on Saturday, Sept. 22, 2018 from 8 a.m. – 11 a.m.  

The new 5,000-foot runway can accommodate most large transport charter aircraft.  The new Arrival and Departure Building now boasts a large conference room, kitchen, two bathrooms and a large lounge/waiting area with TV and Broadband.

Airport Commission Chair John Barton says, “Through a long process and good work from many individuals we now have an updated airport facility that is capable of providing improved service to this community to promote tourism, assist in emergency transportation and wild fire suppression.  We’re very happy with the result of this effort and hope people will visit the airport and see the improvements.”

An annual fly-in/drive-in pancake breakfast on the morning of Sept. 22 will be provided by the Cook County, Minn. volunteer aviation group, The Arrowhead Eagles. (The Arrowhead Eagles is a not for profit volunteer organization which helps fund small airport projects and small scholarships for local students with aviation interest).  In addition, there will be many aircraft on display and discount airplane rides will be available to the public as well.

For more information, please visit | https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/grand-marais-cook-county-airport-fly-in-drive-in-breakfast/

About Grand Marais/Cook County Airport

The Grand Marais/Cook County Airport is located eight miles from downtown Grand Marais; it is a full-service facility, providing full aircraft servicing with fuel and maintenance, United States Customs check-in, a sea plane base, and rental car or lodge transportation for easy access to all the local sights and recreational activities available in Minnesota’s most beautiful county!

About Visit Cook County

 

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #visitcc, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

 

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Cook County Airport terminal building

Cook County Airport

Linda Jurek, Executive Director | phone# (218) 387-2788 | email: linda@visitcookcounty.com

PR | Sawtooth Mountain Challenge Gives Bike Riders of All abilities ‘Right-Sized’ Challenges

Sawtooth Challenge Logo

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Oct. 20 ride benefits trail maintenance in Cook County

Sawtooth Mountain Challenge gives bike riders of all abilities ‘right-sized’ challenges

Grand Marais, Minn.  – Sept. 5, 2018 – The Sawtooth Mountain Bike Challenge, a 25 year old race that occurs on Pincushion Mountain overlooking Grand Marais, is the main fundraiser for the Superior Cycling Association’s (SCA) trail maintenance fund. Participants will experience a good riding challenge, have fun and raise money for a great cause. Distances include 22 miles, 15 miles, 8 miles, and children’s races.

“It was the first mountain bike race held in the region,” says Jay Arrowsmith-DeCoux, mayor of Grand Marais and current owner of Fireweed Bike Coop. According to Arrowsmith-DeCoux, the event was founded by the previous bike shop owners, Mark and Melinda Spinler, to showcase the rugged terrain of Northeastern Minnesota.

 

“It’s a challenging event with a 650-foot climb in just a couple of miles, then around the single-track, which can be brutal but is ultimately rewarding. Simply put, it is the perfect season finale to a great summer of biking.”

 

The North Shore is renowned for its rugged terrain and challenging biking trails. Several newer bike events have been established in recent years like the Lutsen99er, Le Grand Du Nord and Norpine Fat Bike Class to meet the demand of participants.

“Over 2,000 visitors travel to Cook County annually from great distances to participate in these sought-after biking events,” says Linda Jurek, executive director of Visit Cook County. “They come for the challenge and stay for the scenery, local hospitality and superb volunteers.”

The event typically raises between $3,000-$5,000 for area bike trail maintenance. This year, there will be a raffle for a Specialized Mountain Bike of an estimated value of $3,600. Tickets are $10 and will be available for purchase at the event. “We’re proud to sponsor this event and raise money to maintain the trails up here, since recreational and serious biking in the area has grown more popular during the past five years.” Most recently, funds raised in prior years have helped to build a new section of trail between the Britton Peak trail system in Tofte to Lutsen Mountains.

 

The event takes place during the family based Moose Madness Festival in Grand Marais offering additional appeal to bikers wanting to travel with their families. Participants can register before the race at Voyageur Brewery where adult registrants will receive beer tokens to be redeemed at the after-party.

 

For more information, please visit: https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/sawtooth-mountain-bike-challenge/

 

About Visit Cook County

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #visitcc, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

 

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Linda Jurek | Visit Cook County | 218. 387. 2788 | linda@visitcookcounty.com

PR | Moose Madness Gets a Makeover with Headliner Kid Band, The Bazillions!

Moose Madness

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

During MEA Weekend-Oct 19-21, 2018

Moose Madness Gets a Makeover with Headliner Kid Band, The Bazillions!

 

Grand Marais, Minn. – Aug. 28, 2018 – Families can head north for MEA weekend to un-plug and play moose themed activities, Friday, Oct. 19 – Sunday, 21 at the Moose Madness Family Festival. The long running festival gets a makeover with the addition of kid rock-n-roll band The Bazillions on Saturday, Oct. 20. Festival-goers can spend the weekend earning and spending “moose bucks” by participating in scavenger hunts, a race, arts, and much more.

 

Big changes to Moose Madness this year starting with the move of Moose Headquarters to Grandma Ray’s restaurant and bar, which features a stage to host Minneapolis based kid rock-n-roll band The Bazillions on Saturday from 11:30 am – 3:30 pm. Visitors will be able to spend the rest of the weekend hunting for the Moose Medallion.  Clues will lead visitors around town until the medallion is found. Saturday afternoon, families can compete in the annual Moose Mosey, a short, kid-friendly “race” along the Grand Marais Harbor.  While roaming around town, keep an eye out for the festival’s mascot, Murray the Moose.  He’s happy to pose for photos. Earn a moose buck by posting your mug shot with Murray online!

 

Don’t just stick to the festival activities in town, venture out on a moose-adventure.  Visitors can bike, drive or hike on the Gunflint Trail, where there is a chance they will catch a glimpse of one of the elusive 3,500 local moose in the Boreal Forest. For more information and a full schedule of all of the weekend’s events and activities: https://www.visitcookcounty.com/event/moose-madness/

 

About Visit Cook County

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #visitcc, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

 

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Linda Jurek | Visit Cook County | 218.387.2788 | linda@visitcookcounty.com

PR | Annual Sivertson Gallery Inuit Premiere October 26- 27

Sivertson Gallery interior

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Annual Sivertson Gallery Inuit Premiere October 26 – 27

Featuring Inuit Sculptor Bill Nasagaluak and Canadian Throat-Singers

 

Grand Marais, Minn. – Sept. 5, 2018An extraordinary showcase of Inuit print art and sculpture, along with carving demonstrations and throat singing performances happening all weekend at the 18th annual Sivertson Gallery Inuit Premiere. All events are free and open to the public through the weekend of Friday Oct 26, and Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018.

 

Every fall since 1959 Dorset Fine Arts, marketing arm of the West Baffin Eskimo Co-operative, has released an annual limited-run print collection. The collection is released via approved galleries around the world, and for the past 18 years, Sivertson Gallery of Grand Marais, MN, has had the privilege of being counted among one of them. “We are the only authorized Cape Dorset Fine Arts gallery in Minnesota” says owner Jan Sivertson. People are encouraged to head to Sivertson Gallery on October 26th and 27th to view the print collection in person, for a weekend celebrating “art of the north”.

 

Also featured during the event is a specially curated collection of hand-picked, hand carved stone sculptures. The story of these pieces comes from the stones they are carved from. Stones are hauled to villages in the artic on snowmobiles from distant rock quarries, sometimes over 200 miles away. Featured Guest, Inuit sculptor and stone carver, Bill Nasogaluak will be giving a demonstration at North House Folk School at 2 pm on Friday, Oct. 26, 2018. He will also present as a part of a larger artist’s panel at 6 pm on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018.

 

Ongoing throughout the weekend will be live Throat Singing performances by Nina Segalowitz and Taqralik Partridge. Throat Singing is a vocal form in which a single voice produces more than one tone at the same time, usually as harmonics of a main tone or drone, traditionally practiced by peoples in central Asia, the Inuit, and Tibetan Buddhist monks.

 

More about the annual print collection and Dorset Fine Arts:

http://www.dorsetfinearts.com/

Link to some of Mr. Nasogaluak’s work:

http://www.artnet.com/artists/bill-nasogaluak/

 

Friday, Oct. 26

2 p.m. – 4 p.m. | Bill Nasogaluak, sculptor and stone carver from Tuktuyaktuk, Northwest Territories, Canada will give a carving demonstration at North House Folk School in Grand Marais.

6 p.m. – 8 p.m. | Patron’s reception, Sivertson Gallery, Grand Marais – Presenting the 2018 Cape Dorset Print Collection, short throat singing demonstration.

 

Saturday, Oct. 27

1 p.m. – 3 p.m. | Live Canadian Throat-Singing performance by Taqralik Partridge and Nina Segalowitz

6 p.m. | Guest panel talking about living in the north

 

About Visit Cook County

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades — most recently it was named USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #visitcc, Twitter @CookCoVisitorsFacebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at www.visitcookcounty.com.

Linda Jurek | Visit Cook County | 218.387.2788 | linda@visitcookcounty.com