There's a new way to explore Central Minnesota state parks, and while you're busy discovering all kinds of nature -- you just might win a prize along the way.

Minnesota’s parks have a diversity of mammals, flowers, trees, humans and birds.
If you spot them, you just might win one of the weekly $20 gift cards. The scavenger hunts combine online technology with in-nature experiences.

The scavenger hunt is put on by the Parks & Trails Council of Minnesota. Find the egret. Snap a pic of the whitetail deer. Spot the beaver in the pond. It could all lead to a twenty-dollar Minnesota State Parks gift card good towards daily or yearly vehicle passes, or merchandise at state park stores.

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Participating Central Minnesota state parks include:

Just click on the park you're visiting above, and you'll be directed on how to earn points, what to look for, and how to win. The whole this is meant to work great on your phone (and it does).

You can see the full list of the 69 participating Minnesota state parks HERE.

Minnesota is blessed with a ton of natural beast just waiting to be hiked, biked, fished, and explored. A single-day vehicle permit will cost you $7, and an annual vehicle permit is $35.

The good news is that the above list of state parks are all just a short drive from the Saint Cloud area. The bottom line is that there's no shortage of ways to spend some quality time with your family outdoors this weekend (It's what I'll be doing.)

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