Environment

Park Supervisor Reveals the Underrated Trail for Seeing Fall Colors in Pattison State Park

DOUGLAS CO., Wis. — The best time to see the fall colors at the Pattison State Park just south of Superior is beginning right now and will last for the next three weeks, according to a park supervisor with the Wisconsin DNR. Pattison has about four to five miles of trails for visitors to hike, but the natural resource property…

Pick Your Own Cream of the Crop at Farmer Doug’s Pumpkin Patch

The Hoffbauer Farm is located at 3361 Lindahl Road in Duluth

DULUTH, Minn. – Farmers battled against a dry growing season in the Northland, but it didn’t stop one local farm from producing a good quality yield of pumpkins this fall. “We know that sooner or later the frost is going to come for keeps,” said Doug Hoffbauer, owner of Hoffbauer Tree Farm. At Farmer Doug’s farm, Mother Nature gets the…

City of Duluth Proclaims ‘Ann Redelfs Day’ to Honor Late Community Advocate

Redelfs served as an educator at UMD, worked with neighborhoods and police, and more before she died suddenly in April. 

DULUTH, Minn.- A longtime member of the Duluth community, the late Ann Redelfs was honored at Glensheen Sunday for her contributions to the environmental, social, and political landscape of the city. Throughout her life Redelfs lived Oklahoma, Houston, Ithaca, New York, and San Diego before moving to Duluth in 2004. She served as an educator at UMD, organized regular meetings…

First Frost Of Season Could Be Concerning For Gardeners

Gardeners say frost can cause a plant's growth rate to decline immediately.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – Temperatures are starting to drop for the season and maybe creating frost concerns for local gardeners. Experts say when frost hits the vegetation will go into conservation mode and save nutrients down into the roots. The pores on leaves will also close to prevent the cold from coming in, which could cause the plant’s cells to freeze…

The EPA Awards Funding To Restore Environmental Areas Of Concern In Twin Ports

"When you clean up the water, remove the contamination, and restore the habitat, it is an immediate benefit for the environment and the community," said Kurt Thiede, Regional Administrator for the EPA.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced it will be providing nearly $14 million in funding to help rehabilitate environmental areas of concern along the St. Louis River and the Great Lakes. The financial support is part of the EPA’s five-year plan to restore environments within the great lakes. The St. Louis River in the Twin Ports has…

Free Water Maps Get Northlanders Out on St. Louis River Water Trail

The maps detail the St. Louis River National Water Trail.

DULUTH, Minn.- Throughout the month of September, the St. Louis River Alliance (SLRA) is helping Northlanders get out on local water trails with new full color water maps. The maps detail the St. Louis River National Water Trail, a multi-use waterway with 11 loop trails for paddlers of all skill levels and other watercraft. On Wednesday the SLRA was at…

Inaugural Ann Redelfs Bird Count Honors a Life Lost Too Soon

The Ann Redelfs Bird Count is Happening Sept. 1 - 10 on the Grounds of Glensheen Mansion in Duluth

DULUTH, Minn – This year’s fall bird migration comes with a special meaning for one group of avid bird counters in the Northland. Dozens will be turning their eyes to the sky with a special message for a friend who impacted so many and was taken too soon. “It’s not the best day for birding, but they will come with…

One Year After Fatal Hit-and-Run, Nashwauk Remembers Toddler Logan Klennert by Planting Trees

Police say 39-year-old Jake Place was under the influence when he killed Logan and injured his aunt, his sentencing is set for October.

NASHWAUK, Minn.- It’s been one year since a fatal hit-and-run in Nashwauk by a driver under the influence took the life of 2-year-old Logan Klennert and injured his 16-year-old aunt. On Sunday, the community honored Logan while spreading the message to drive sober. Meanwhile, the man charged in the hit-and-run is set to be sentenced this Fall. “It’s been a…

Northland Red Cross Sends Volunteers to Help with Hurricane Laura Relief, Seeking More

Officials with the Northland Chapter of the Red Cross in Duluth say so far more volunteers are needed for medical, logistics, and other roles.

DULUTH, Minn.- As Hurricane Laura nears landfall on the Gulf Coast, the American Red Cross is gearing up to dispatch their response teams to the hardest hit areas ready to pick up the pieces from what is projected to be a devastating hurricane. One nurse from International Falls just landed in Houston Wednesday, and four more volunteers from the Northland…

Poetry Event at Wussow’s Cafe Uses Art to Talk Climate Change

The goal is to remind people that climate change should be local concern, not just a national one. 

DULUTH, Minn. – Poets in Duluth got together to share some of their art while raising awareness of climate change. The local band Woodblind opened up the Climate Emergency Poetry Night at Wussow’s Cafe in West Duluth. Both new and experienced local poets got up and shared their original works about climate change. The goal is to remind people that…

Storm Damage in Duluth Not as Bad as Past Storms, City Officials Say

While officials said they were prepared for storms as severe as those in the past, city officials said all in all, Duluth got out of the mix relatively unscathed. 

DULUTH, Minn.- Following a Friday night of turbulent storms, Duluth city officials said that the city had not taken much heavy damage, compared to nearby localities. On Friday the Duluth Fire Department responded to over a dozen calls of trees down on houses, cars, and power lines causing sparks. Meanwhile, the Public Works Department responded to about six calls of…

Severe Storms Batter Superior with Downed Trees, Damaged Homes

Two homeowners awoke to find a giant tree toppled onto their rental property.

SUPERIOR, Wis.- Many homeowners in Superior awoke Saturday morning to see their lawns and property battered with branches and trees due to Friday night’s storms. “The storms we’ve had earlier this year haven’t been as severe,” said Battalion Chief Bob Zimmerman of the Superior Fire Department. “When you start to rank it with regard to severe storms, we saw the…

Pattison State Park Trails Busy During First Weekend Open After 2018 Flood Damage

Visitors from as far as Utah came to check out the waterfalls along the newly renovated trails.

SUPERIOR, Wis.- Hikers, families and nature lovers wasted no time getting back to Pattison State Park over the weekend as it reopened after two years, after flood waters tore through the trails on Father’s Day 2018. “Very, very excited not only to be on the trails but to be outside, to be around people,” said David Zander, a Minneapolis native…

Boy Scouts Build Bat Houses To Help Declining Bat Population in Northern Minnesota

Bats are a crucial part of the Northern Minnesota ecosystem.

HERMANTOWN, Minn.- Boy Scouts at the Voyageurs Area Council partnered with the Sustainable Forestry Initiative and Minnesota Power to start making 70 houses for a different type of resident in need — bats. “It’s kind of a little condo for bats,” said Michael Jenkins, Scout Executive. The sound of machines cutting wood and the smell of fresh wet paint are…

Recent Incident Sparks Plea from Wildwoods: “Stop Littering”

The Canadian Goose Caught in String Was Cut Free, Then Transferred For Further Medical Care

DULUTH, Minn. – Millions of animals are injured or even killed annually due to the careless actions of human beings. Littering – whether it be cans, containers, string, or fishing line, these materials don’t mix well when coming into contact with animals. Wildwoods Wildlife Rehab Center in Duluth is speaking out regarding a recent incident that could have taken the…

Duluth City Crews Clear Heavy Chunks of Metal Culvert from Lester River

Crews said they were pieces of culverts washed out from the 2012 flood. 

DULUTH, Minn.- Among the swimmers in the river and hikers on the trail, some may have spotted city crews at Lester Park clearing metal debris out of the river. Public works responded to a citizen report of chunks of metal floating downstream. Crews said they were pieces of culverts washed out from the 2012 flood. Some of those pieces weiged…

Hartley Nature Center Launches August Fundraising Campaign

"We Heart Hartley" Campaign Runs August 1 - 31, 2020

DULUTH, Minn. – As July wraps up, the folks at Hartley Nature Center in Duluth are thrilled to announce a month-long fundraising effort called “We Heart Hartley.” Hartley Executive Director, Tom O’Rourke said the announcement comes after the cancellation of the center’s annual August fundraiser called “Wine in the Woods.” The cancellation is due in part to the ongoing coronavirus…

Gary New Duluth Rec Center Distributes Food Bags from YMCA Summer Food Service

Volunteers say the meals help in the food desert of Gary New Duluth.

DULUTH, Minn.- Some people in Gary New Duluth Wednesday spent the warm sunny weather handing out bags of food to those in need. The Duluth Area YMCA Summer Food Service Program has been giving out grab-and-go meal bags at the Gary New Duluth Recreation Center since March. The bags included juice, healthy snacks, and produce from the community garden. A…

Minnesotans Receiving Mysterious Packets of Seeds From China

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture Advises Minnesotans to Not Plant the Seeds

ST. PAUL, Minn. – On Monday, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) announced they’ve had multiple reports of residents receiving unsolicited packages of seeds appearing to come from China. “We’re uncertain what these seeds may be and why people are receiving these unsolicited packages,” said Denise Thiede, MDA’s Seed Unit Supervisor. “Until we know more, we encourage people to contact…

UWS Awarded Grant for Lake Superior Microplastics Research

SUPERIOR, Wis. – A UW-Superior professor has been awarded more than $40,000 to study microplastics in the St. Louis River and Lake Superior. The grant is from the Freshwater Collaborative of Wisconsin. It awarded research money to three UW campuses: Madison, Eau Claire, and Superior. UWS students and chemistry professor Lorena Rios will use the grant money to study how…

MPCA Warns of Blue-Green Algae Dangers for Dogs

Two Dogs Have Died in Minnesota This Summer After Coming into Contact with Blue-Green Algae

DULUTH, Minn. – A toxic form of algae continues to take over area lakes, rivers, and ponds. Just this summer, two dogs in Minnesota have died after swimming in water tainted by blue-green algae. As we reach the dog days of summer, officials who research the growth often are looking to alert pet owners of potential danger. “You can’t identify…

St. Louis River Alliance Continues to Make Progress Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

A Small Skeletal Crew Continues to Work on Restoration Projects Impacting the St. Louis River Estuary

DULUTH, Minn. – The COVID-19 pandemic is impacting projects small and large across the Twin Ports, and restoration along the St. Louis River estuary is no exception. Kris Eilers, Executive Director of the St. Louis River Alliance (SLRA), says her team has had to rethink the way they are doing things amid the ongoing pandemic. She’s thankful the river has…

Wildfires in Superior National Forest, BWCA on Fourth of July

MINNESOTA — According to the U.S. Fire Service, multiple wildfires burned in the Superior National Forest and BWCA on the Fourth of July. In the Superior National Forest, four wildfires were reported in the west area. Three wildfires were reported in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness within St. Louis County, as well as another fire outside of the Boundary…

Saharan Dust Cloud Moves Through Midwest; Not Very Visible Through Minnesota Clouds

The cloud of dust from Africa creates vibrant sunsets and hazy skies, but cloudy skies keep Minnesotans from seeing it.

DULUTH, Minn.- If you were hoping to catch a glimpse of a hazy sky or a vibrant sunset here in Minnesota Sunday or Monday, caused by the phenomenon known as the Saharan Dust Cloud, you may be out of luck due to our pesky clouds. The Saharan Dust Cloud is dust picked up by thunderstorms and winds in Africa’s Sahara…

Denfeld Students Keep Up Course Cleanup Tradition Despite Grandma’s Cancellation

Denfeld Girls Soccer Team has picked up trash along the shore the day after race day for about 10 years.

DULUTH, Minn.- The cancellation of Grandma’s Marathon didn’t stop Denfeld High School students from their nearly 10-year tradition of picking up trash along the course the day after race day. “We’re a part of the community and it’s nice to get our name out, y’know get some supporters for our team,”said Denfeld Junior Kamryn Hill. After Grandma’s every year, it’s…

YMCA’s Camp Miller Announces They Will Be Open for Summer Season

Camp Miller, With Permission from Governor Tim Walz, Will Be Allowed to Host Family Camps Only

  STURGEON LAKE, Minn. – The YMCA’s Camp Miller in Sturgeon Lake, Minnesota, is celebrating its 122nd summer season this year amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Leadership learned earlier this week from Minnesota Governor Tim Walz, they will be allowed to open this summer for family camps only, with restrictions in place to prevent further spread of coronavirus. “We want…

2020 Duluth Monarch Festival Cancelled Due to COVID-19 Pandemic

Duluth Monarch Buddies Made the Announcement Tuesday Morning on Social Media

DULUTH, Minn. – Monarch butterflies will soon be fluttering back into the Northland, but there won’t be a festival to celebrate them this year. Duluth Monarch Buddies took to social media Tuesday morning, announcing the cancellation of the 2020 Duluth Monarch Festival. The event was scheduled to take place on Saturday, June 13. Members of the group say an outdoor…

Minnesota Company to Close North Dakota Coal-fired Plant

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The company that operates the largest coal-fired power plant in North Dakota announced Thursday it will close the factory and replace most of its energy with new wind farms in Minnesota. Maple Grove, Minnesota-based Great River Energy said its Coal Creek Station near Underwood in west-central North Dakota will be shuttered in the second half of…

Duluth Trails Open After Freeze/Thaw, No Plans to Close Beaches So Far

Walkers, runners and bikers flock to their favorite trails.

DULUTH, Minn.- Just in time for the nice weather, Duluth Parks and Recreation announced that most of the city’s multi-use natural surface trails are now open after being closed due to wet conditions. “It’s been a long time coming this spring,” said Parks and Rec Trail Cooridinator Matt Andrews. “We’ve all been patiently waiting for these trails to open up….

Lakes, Local Businesses Busy for Wisconsin Fishing Opener

While social distancing and practicing guidelines, anglers stocked up on bait and tackle and took to the water.

SOLON SPRINGS, Wis.- The near perfect weather Saturday lured Wisconsin anglers out for the day many have been waiting all year for: the 2020 Fishing Opener. “It’s been a long winter and get some walleyes, maybe some crappies, bass, whatever it’s, whatever’s biting,” said Kyle Tikkanen, fishing with his son, Kegan on Upper Saint Croix Lake. “Just getting out, enjoying…

Minnesota DNR: Take Feeders Down, Utilize Preventative Measures

As Bears Begin to Roam, The Minnesota DNR Reminds Residents to Use Caution

DULUTH, Minn. – Spring has sprung and now bears are all the buzz, waking up from a long winter slumber with new cubs who are ready to eat and roam with the parents. The Minnesota DNR is receiving reports of bear sightings near the Duluth Lakewalk and other urban areas. Officials want to remind residents that black bears are generally…

Minnesota DNR Encourages Hunting, Fishing License Sales

Revenue From License Sales Help Fund Critical Field Work for the Minnesota DNR

DULUTH, Minn. – The Minnesota Department of Natural Resource is urging outdoor enthusiasts to continue purchasing fishing and hunting license this year amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Governor Tim Walz has officially allowed fishing season to begin as planned on Saturday, May 9. Turkey season is already well underway in many parts of the state. Much of the revenue collected from…

St. Louis River Quest Canceled for the First Time in Program History

Organizers hope to bring those that missed out this year aboard next year.

DULUTH, Minn.- The 28th Annual St. Louis River Quest, the three-day waterfront and water safety education program for sixth graders, has been canceled for the first time due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Originally scheduled for the beginning of May, River Quest has never been canceled since its start in 1993. 1,500 sixth graders from 13 area schools come to the…

Volunteers Keep Duluth Clean for First Virtual Cleanup Day

City launches first ever virtual cleanup after spring lakewalk cleaning gets canceled.

DULUTH, Minn.- In honor of Earth Day and the canceled spring lakewalk cleanup, the City of Duluth launched their first “Keep Duluth Clean Virtual Cleanup” Saturday. People are encouraged to grab an old bucket or bag, put on their gloves, and start picking up trash. They can share their progress with the hashtag #keepduluthclean. Volunteers cleaning up said they’re surprised…

All Natural Surface Trails in Duluth Closed due to Wet Conditions

Temporarily closure done regularly.

DULUTH, Minn.- All surface trails in Duluth have been closed for a few weeks by the city due to trail conditions. Trails like Superior Hiking Trail are routinely closed this time of year when conditions are too wet for foot or bike traffic. According to city staff, this ensures good quality for the trails once things dry out. “What we’re…

Getting Out of House to Clean Up North Shore

Two friends spend their time without a job picking up garbage along Brighton Beach all the way to Two Harbors.

DULUTH, Minn.- As more people are enjoying activities outdoors, two folks decided to show the environment some love, and pick up trash along the North Shore. After losing their jobs at Duluth Woman’s Club, Lane Prekker and Karina Bite decided to get out of the house and head to Brighton Beach. “We came up here to get out in the…

Angler’s Isolation: Fishing on the Brule River

Coronavirus doesn't keep anglers from fishing for steelhead trout.

BRULE, Wis.- Since solitary outdoor activities in state parks are considered essential in Governor Tony Evers’s Safer-at-Home order, some anglers took advantage of that, casting their rods on the Brule River. The babbling brooks feeding into the rushing river are the only sounds that greet you out along the Brule. “This is about as isolated as we can get,” Eric…

State Allocates Funds for Prevention of Aquatic Invasive Species

Each year the state legislature delegates funds to attack Aquatic Invasive Species.

DULUTH, Minn.- The fight against Aquatic Invasive Species in St. Louis County lakes continues as the County Board has approved the distribution of funds for their prevention and elimination. Each year the state legislature allocated funding to counties to be used to prevent the introduction and limit the spread of Aquatic Invasive Species, or AIS. These species disrupt the health…

Wildwoods Wildlife Rehabilitation Reopens after Five Months Closed

Center officially opens March 21st.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Wildwoods Wildlife Rehabilitation in Duluth is opening later this month, and on Sunday they invited the public to an open house to see the facilities before animals start arriving. Wildwoods was closed for 5 months to renew its permit with the Minnesota DNR. Once open, it will continue to house and rehabilitate certain animals at their facility,…

Free Solar Energy Workshop Held in West Duluth

Families learned about renewable energy at the Family Freedom Center.

DULUTH, Minn.- Families learned more about renewable energy at a free Solar Workshop at the Family Freedom Center The workshop featured informational booths with training and job opportunities in renewable energy. There were also interactive solar-based games for kids. According to organizers, renewable energy is the right way to go in the Northland. “The interesting thing about renewable energy and…

2nd Annual Local Food Fair Happening Saturday in Cloquet

The 2nd Annual Local Food Fair is Happening at Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College in Cloquet

CLOQUET, Minn. – Happening Saturday, March 7, Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College will host the 2nd annual Local Food Fair sponsored by the United Way of Carlton County. The event is set to bring together local farmers, bakers, and other food producers. The Local Food Fair is happening from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. This free, family-friendly event brings…

Enbridge Pays City of Mellen $1.5 Million for Land to be Used in Line 5 Reroute

If Line 5 reroute construction happens, Enbridge will pay city additional $3.25 million

MELLEN, Wis. – Enbridge is rerouting part if its Line 5 pipeline around the Bad River Reservation. Line 5 is now designed to pass through Mellen, Wisconsin. On March 3rd, a deal was finalized between the city of Mellen and Enbridge allowing the pipeline to be built underneath a piece of land just north of the city. Enbridge presented a…

Northlanders Enjoy Warm First Day of Meteorological Spring Outside

Temps reach low 40s as people enjoy the lakeside in Canal Park.

DULUTH, Minn.- Sunday was the first day of Meteorological Spring, the three month period of March, April and May which meteorologists use to calculate seasonal statistics. It sure felt like Spring here in the Northland, as temperatures got as high as 42 degrees in Duluth. So people got outside in Canal Park enjoying the melting lake and sunshine, as we…

“Sunscriptions” Filled on the SunSpot Bus

ACTIVE ADVENTURES: Mobile Unit Geared to Help Vitamin D Deficiency, SAD and Winter Blues

DULUTH, Minn. — In this weeks Active Adventures Fox 21’s Brittney Merlot takes on the SUNSPOT BUS! If you are battling the winter blues, cabin fever, vitamin D deficiency and finding yourself not being very active, light therapy can help you! ABOUT: The further one lives north of the equator, the less sunshine hits the surface of the earth or…

Park Officials Remind Pet Owners to “Pick Up Poop”

Piles of Poop Left Behind Causes Concerns from Park Officials, City Staff

DULUTH, Minn. – It’s warm, squishy, and it stinks. We’re talking poop. Chances are you’re guilty once or twice of watching your pet poo, and walking away in a public place. But it’s now becoming a problem within the Twin Ports, one pile leading to hundreds if not thousands left unattended. “No one wants to walk in poop when they’re…

The Ups and Downs of Unfrozen Lake Superior

Experts share different effects of the lake's low ice cover, while some Northlanders miss the ice.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Northland has gone through an unseasonably warm winter, eliminating the chance for much ice to form on the surface of Lake Superior. “I was excited for the ice build up and it’s just not coming yet,” Lindsey Ruhnke said. Lapping waves is a surprising sound to hear by the lake at the beginning of February. “I think…

Great Grey Owl Sighting Attracts Dozens of Bird Enthusiasts to Duluth

A Great Grey Owl Was Recently Spotted Along Interstate 35 Near 21st Avenue East in Duluth, a Rare Occurrence

DULUTH, Minn. – The Great Grey Owl typically resides toward the tip of North America and across the pond in northern Russia. Recently, residents in the Northland captured a rare sight, one that has bird enthusiasts speaking out in this week’s Great Outdoors. “Even people that were just driving by living in the neighborhood, they pull over and ask what…