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Parks at Itasca, Lake Bemidji host bird counts, solstice activities this weekend

A Winter Solstice Renewal & Family Fun Morning will be offered at Itasca State Park, located just north of Park Rapids, from 11 a.m. until 12 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 20.

Participants will learn how to make a pop-bottle bird feeder, dip new candles from old candles, and get tips on making punched tin juice-lid decorations.

Then on Sunday, Dec. 21, enjoy the 14th Annual Itasca Winter Bird Count Backyard Winter Bird Feeding Slideshow at Itasca. Come take part in the 109th Audubon Christmas Bird Count, and search the area for resident winter birds.

Please bring your lunch, and dress warmly-snow boots, snowshoes or skis may be needed depending on snow conditions.

For further information, dial 218-266-2100, or visit

Lake Bemidji State Park at the city of Bemidji will also hold their annual Winter Bird Count on Saturday, Dec. 20, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Birders will travel through hardwood and pine forests, and counts both the species and total number of birds seen.

This event is open to birders of all abilities-please bring binoculars and field guides. To participate, please call the park naturalist at 218-308-2328.