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outdoor amphitheater with crowd wild rice

Itasca State Park Wild Rice Day

Over 400 students and visitors watched wild rice being parched and jigged, heard of the Anishinaabe relationship with manoomin (wild rice) and tasted this wild grain cooked with blueberries. Through a collaboration with the Nature Conservancy, Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe members, University of Minnesota interns and funding from a grant, Itasca State Park hosted a one of a kind day celebrating wild rice in Minnesota’s premier state park. 

Wild rice, or manoomin (Ojibwe) grows in abundance in northern Minnesota. Stretching across the headwaters of the Mississippi River nearly half a million visitors view this wild grass each year. Currently there is no signage or information for visitors regarding wild rice, something we hope to change in the future.