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State park sticker promotes Cuyuna

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opinion Brainerd, 56401

Brainerd MN 506 James St. / PO Box 974 56401

For Minnesotans who love the outdoors, placing the Minnesota State Parks sticker on their vehicle’s windshield is an annual rite of passage. The year-round permits grants the vehicle and its passengers entry into the North Star State’s 76 state parks as well as its many recreation areas.

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Crow Wing County residents, this year, can affix the sticker with an extra sense of pride since it’s a photograph taken by one of our own and features one of central Minnesota’s newest and most popular outdoor attractions.

Aaron Hautala of Cuyuna took the photo, which features the Cuyuna Lakes State Recreation Area. That Crosby area site includes a 25-mile single-track mountain bike trail system. The trails opened in 2011 with support from the Legacy funding. The photograph, one of 20 he submitted for the Department of Natural Resources’ consideration, shows women biking on the trail system with fall color in the background.

Motorists can buy a daily state park pass for $5 but the annual pass is a better deal for anyone who makes multiple visits to one of our state parks. Also, it wouldn’t hurt area tourism if the sticker promoting the Cuyuna Range Recreation Area became a common sight on the roadways. It’s a way to make a personalized statement for those of us who can no longer brag that “My child is an honors student ...” at such and such school.

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