Late Summer Headwaters

Welcome! We are currently updating this website. There will be more to come!


We are raising funds for a new  Swimming Beach Playground.  In 1995 the founding members of the Friends of Itasca installed a new playground at the swimming beach. Perhaps you know it well, as a place for kids to blow off a lot of energy and as a welcome site for parents and grandparents. However, such popularity takes its toll; and the time has come for a new playground. One that will appeal to and accommodate all children. Friends of Itasca has made this project top priority. We have been busy planning and fundraising and NEED YOUR HELP. Tap the GiveMN button. It’s as simple as that.


We are tagging along with Parks and Trails on a State Park Scavenger Hunt.

Learn More - Parks and Trails Scavenger Hunt


You are welcome to join the Friends of Itasca State Park or renew your membership here, or you may help by giving directly through GiveMN, the Northwest Minnesota Foundation or via PayPal (a link will be coming soon). Friends of Itasca State Park is a tax-exempt 501(c) (3) organization.

Become a Friend of
Itasca State Park

The options are:

  • $20 per person
  • $30 per family or organization
  • $500 for a lifetime membership

Memberships run from September 1 - August 31.

Mail Option - You may join by printing and filling out this Membership Application (pdf).Make checks payable to “Friends of Itasca State Park.”

Our mailing address is:

Friends of Itasca State Park
36750 Main Park Drive
Park Rapids, MN 56470

It is easy to give and every gift helps Itasca State Park!
NW Minnesota Foundation


Our Mission Statement
The mission of the Friends of Itasca Park is to support the preservation of the natural beauty, historical and ecological significance, and recreational opportunity of Itasca Park as a unique heritage for the present and future generations.
Our History
The Friends of Itasca State Park is a support group for Itasca State Park. This all-volunteer group raises money for projects that are needed at the park. For example, the group has raised money for playgrounds for various location around the park. We restored the wicker furniture at the main lodge and many other projects around the park. Most recently the Friends helped fund a fishing pier at Ozawindib Lake and resting benches along the park’s biking trails. Currently we are raising money for an interactive multi-media gallery about the Mississippi River in the visitors’ center and have begun a permanent endowment fund for longer term funding projects.

The Itasca State Park Citizens Association had its first meeting in 1993 with Rollis Bishop as president. It was organized by some of the members of the pre-existing Itasca State Park Advisory Board as a separate group that could take a more active role in helping the park. The Citizens Association organized volunteer activities and raised money for playground equipment, furniture restoration, the reproduction and framing of historical pictures of the park, and other projects.

In about 1998, the old Itasca State Park Advisory Board ceased activity and transferred the balance of its funds to the Citizens Association – effectively joining the Citizens Association. At about that time the group started calling itself the Friends of Itasca State Park, but did not officially change the name until 2002.

Primary Goals
  • Assist in raising funds, as well as providing actual labor for special projects for Itasca Park as determinted by Park Administration.
  • Assist the Park Resource Specialist in projects that improve the environmental integrity of the Park.
  • Be an advocate for the Park on any issue found to be important to the Park by contacting state legislators.
  • Communicate with local businesses to promote harmony in the surrounding business community.
  • Promote and help preserve the historical significance of the Park and the surrounding area.
  • be a source of information to the Park administration by providing input on various Park issues and projects.
  • coordinate efforts and activities with other State Parks, State agencies and organizations interested in promoting tourism in Minnesota.
  • Be an active participant in the activities offered at Itasca Park
  • Provide awareness to the citizens of our country as to the significance of Itasca State Park.
  • Improve the support base of the organization through increased membership.
Late Summer Headwaters

Board Members
  • Tim Holzkamm – President
  • Luann Hurd-Lof – Vice President
  • John La Fond – Treasurer
  • Dan Wilson – Secretary
  • Charlie Hovde
  • Julie A. Sanders
  • Roberta Anderson
  • Barb Jauquet-Kalinoski
  • Eric Haugland
Honorary Board Members
  • Rollis Bishop
  • Bill and Anne Sliney
  • Duane Christopherson
  • Richard Sauer

The Friends of Itasca can be contacted via email or by mail. Email: Mailing address: Friends of Itasca State Park
36750 Main Park Drive
Park Rapids, MN 56470