Making lemonade out of lemons after Minot’s 2011 flood, the North Dakota Game and Fish department took advantage of the opportunity to expand and improve their popular area.
Greg Gullickson, Outreach Biologist, said, “The big hit we took on the buildings gave us the opportunity to almost double the space we had available, a great deal when you consider how popular the Outdoor Skills Park has become at the North Dakota State Fair.”
He said a new information building was a priority, but an even more delightful change for young anglers is improvements on the pond which the park will face this week.
“We had to dredge it after the flood,” Gullickson said, “and while we were at it, we moved the fishing pier to a different area. We really needed to do that anyway; the fishermen were elbow to elbow out there.”
The Outdoor Skills Park is shuffling cabins, too. In addition to cabins featuring the four main skills — fishing, hunting, trapping and archery — there will be other cabins in which the focus will shift annually.
Gulllickson said an enhanced hunting area will be another important improvement in the near future.
“Even with the open winter, we had some trouble getting contractors’ time,” he said. “But so many of them are also outdoorsmen that they have been generous about making room for our project.”