Duluth Seeing Surge Of Tourists For MEA Weekend

DULUTH, Minn. — MEA weekend happens during the perfect time of year where families come up to the North Shore for the long weekend and take in the final warm days of fall before the winter.

People and families from all over the state travel this weekend, and the preferred destination for many seems to be the North Shore. Crowds gathered on the Lakewalk Friday in Canal Park to take in the sights and the fall foliage Duluth has to offer, but having the extra time off to spend together is what makes this such a bonus for families.

“I think it gives a nice time with your family when it’s still a little warm out, and it snot freezing to get outdoors, to get that last chance of outdoorsness before it gets super cold,” Rachelle Holsten and Family, from The Cities, said.

Some businesses in Canal Park are also loving the wave of tourists this weekend. The Lakewalk Galley by the lighthouse, serving different street food and beverages, has stayed open longer than they planned, anticipating a busy MEA weekend.

“The past two weeks have been pretty quiet except for weekends, people come up on the weekends, totally get that, but with MEA, kids and families want to come out, so more power to them, they bundle up and support us, been great,” Katelin Van Beaumont, General Manager, Lakewalk Galley, said.

The North Shore also caught the eye of many families as they headed to attractions like Gooseberry Falls and Split Rock Lighthouse, and no matter your age, there is something for everyone.

“The kids are really into finding the agates, exploring, seeing the different beaches, and just a nice open air place to go with the kids,” Holsten said.

For the Lakewalk Galley, who has a front row seat to this action, they are embracing the crowds, and even forecasting a longer season.

“For a long time we were saying October 20th, then we looked at the calendar and said ‘oh, MEA, we can’t close just yet’, and we’re going to probably sit down after this weekend and see if we’ve got one more in us, I mean in my opinion, as long as there’s no snow, we’ll be open,” Van Beaumont said.

Come Sunday, crowds might be dying down a bit, but what Duluth has to offer will still be the same.

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