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Various activities will be at North Country Hiking Fest

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Various activities will be at North Country Hiking Fest
Park Rapids Minnesota PO Box 111 56470

The third annual North Country Hiking Fest will be held Saturday, Aug. 29 at Itasca State Park. The all-day event will feature guided hikes, workshops, food, children and family activities and a free concert by Charlie Maguire. There will be multiple options for outdoor activities available for everyone.

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At 9:30 a.m., social time with treats will begin. Visitors will also be able to watch the award-winning documentary "The Greatest Silent Sport" in the Brower Visitors Center classroom.

Photo tours of the local trail segments, a workshop on animals of the North Country, another on hiking with kids and a GPS geo-coaching session will take place later in the morning.

From noon until 4:30 p.m., guided hikes will be offered. The North Country Trail hike will go from the Gartner Farm Trailhead west to the Anchor Matson Trailhead; a distance of 5.5 miles. Alternatives include taking part in the Brower Trail Wildlife Safari geo-coach group hike, or you can choose one of Itasca's other trails to enjoy on your own.

Shorter afternoon family hikes will be offered from 1 to 3 p.m. They will include a hike to the Aiton Heights Fire Tower and a North Country scavenger hike on the self-guided nature trail.

Social time and dinner will be held following the hikes. A cookout dinner featuring barbecue pork sandwiches will be served at 5 p.m.

Those up for a challenge are invited to play "North Country Jeopardy" at 6 p.m. The Charlie Maguire concert will conclude the festivities at 6:30 p.m.

The Hiking Fest is sponsored by Itasca State Park and the Laurentian Lakes and Itasca Moraine Chapters via a North Country Trail Association field grant.

For more information, call Itasca State Park at 218-699-7251 or visit www.northcountrytrail.org/llc.

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