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Grand Marais Park Board talks golf, harbor and trails

2019 is a planning year for the Grand Marais Parkside public access project on the waterfront
2019 is a planning year for the Grand Marais Parkside public access project on the waterfront

Although the North Shore is firmly in winter's grasp, the Grand Marais Park Board is working on a number of park and recreation issues.
At the park board’s latest meeting, on Tuesday, Feb. 5, the board welcomed new Grand Marais City Council liaison Craig Schulte.

The park board heard from the Gunflint Hills Golf Course work group, including an update on the search for a new superintendent for the 9-hole, 36-par course. There were eight applicants for the position and those were reviewed. Interviews have been conducted with the top applicants and city staff is now in the process of checking references. The park board hopes to have news on the position soon.

The park board and the golf course work group also discussed rates for the golf course and marketing for the new season.

There was also some news on the Grand Marais harbor parkside public access project, which will bring changes to the boat launch in the campground/recreation park. Park and Recreation Manager Dave Tersteeg said 2019 would be a year to finalize plans, such as the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources lease with the city and construction documents and permits. And 2020 will be the year when actual work begins on the waterfront area.

The park board also heard an update on the Sawtooth Bluffs Recreation Area and the work under way to designate that as a “regionally significant parks and trail area.”

The Cook County Parks and Trails division has been working to reach that designation, and it determined that a master plan needs completion. That has been done and has been approved by the Cook County board of commissioners.

It was tentatively approved by the Grand Marais City Council, with the understanding that a joint powers board be created for future maintenance and planning. A joint powers committee will now be formed and Parks Manager Tersteeg said the park board will be involved with that discussion.

Finally, the park board approved some 2019 special event applications, for the Grand Marais Arts Festival on July 12-14 and the Lake Superior Water Festival on July 19-21. The park board also discussed the Stars of the North Music Festival on July 26-28. That request was tabled to obtain more information.

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