Archive for June 2007

Aitkin County

June 28, 2007

Founded: 23 May 1857
• Named after the fur trader William Aitkin
• The Northern Pacific Railroad brought logging and commerce business to the area
Major Industries: agriculture, tourism, forestry
Population: 15, 301
Major towns: Aitkin, Hill City, McGrath, McGregor, Palisade, and Tamarack
Acres: 1,215,669
Location: Containing parts of the Mississippi River and Mille Lacs Lake, Aitkin county is located in the center of Minnesota
Fun facts
• There is only one stoplight in the entire county, at the intersection of Highway 169 and Highway 210 in Aitkin
• There are 123,000 acres of water in Aitkin County, not including rivers
Public Recreation Sites
• Savanna State Park
• Rice Lake National Wildlife Refuge
• Hay Lake State campground
• Canoeing rivers
• Maintained public water accesses around county
Other Places to Visit
• Aitkin County Historical Society Depot Museum,
• Jacques Art Center
• Rialto Theatre
Upcoming Events
• Aitkin County Fair, August 1st-4th
• Aitkin Riverboat Heritage Days, July 18th-22nd
• For a complete list of events in Aitkin County, visit, or email
**Thanks to the Aitkin County Website for the information!

Information gathered by Megan Jung, Sesquicentennial Fellow


Announcing: Counties of the Week

June 28, 2007

Part of what makes our state so special is the many diverse and unique areas of the state. So, as part of Minnesota’s 150th birthday celebration, we’ll be taking a look at each of the 87 counties in Minnesota: at their histories, heritage, culture, celebrations and people.
We want to know what makes your part of Minnesota special! If you know of any celebrations, county fairs, or special things you’re known for (or little-known interesting facts), email us at and we’ll include it when we feature your county. We’ll also post your events on our official Minnesota Sesquicentennial events calendar on this website.
Written by Megan Jung, Minnesota Sesquicentennial Fellow

So you think you’re a Minnesotan?

June 27, 2007


The beautiful State of Minnesota is known for its bodies of water, friendly communities, great outdoors, and long winters. The young Minnesota Sesquicentennial fellows came up with a list of 150 things to do in Minnesota. Each week 10 activities will be posted; here are the first ten things on our list custom tailored for summertime in Minnesota:

150. Cliff jump Taylor’s falls
149. Participate in tubing, jet skiing, water skiing or wakeboarding at one of 10,000 lakes in Minnesota
148. Jump out of a plane with one of Minnesota’s sky diving companies and experience the breathtaking view and fall!
147. Canoe down the boundary waters
146. Experience a “weekend at the cabin” and be sure to enjoy a bonfire
145. Take part in any of the small town festivities, whether it is Leprechaun days in Rosemount, or Corn on the cob days in Plainview
144. Indulge in the State drink (milk) and compete with friends to see who can drink the most in a half hour…its near impossible
143. Take part in the Twin Cities marathon…either by running in it or cheering from the sidelines
142. Take a stroll down Grand Ave. and Summit Ave. and admire the beautiful architecture
141. Take time in the summer to grill a bratwurst and enjoy a beverage from one of our local microbreweries.

From the perspective of Michael Accault….. by Mel Aanerud

June 8, 2007

I am very pleased to share the following email and story from Mel Aanerud. It is such a well written and entertaining glimpse of history behind the headlines. I’m going to read it with my kids before our annual trip to Fort Snelling….

Who was the first white in what we now Call Minnesota? It was probably some French fur trader who happened here across Lake Superior. But Father Louis Hennepin gets most of the credit, but I would like you to consider Michael Accault, who has a very different slant on that first white exploration into Minnesota in 1680.

From the perspective of Michael Accault….. by Mel Aanerud

Good day, Good day.

I have just left a meeting with the commander…you know him Rene Cavalier De LaSalle, the great explorer.

He has just gotten this book from France and he read parts of it to me.

I will take it home and have my wife read the whole thing to me.

It entitled “A new discovery of a vast county in America between New France and new Mexico” and was written by the priest Father Louis Hennepin.

In it he says that he found the source of the Mississippi River and traveled it from its beginnings to New Lisbon and New Orleans, that he named everything in-between in the name of the King of France and that he converted all the Indians he met in his many travels to Christianity.

La Salle said that he exaggerated a bit…I said he is a ball faced liar. (more…)

So you think you’re a Minnesotan?

June 7, 2007

Here’s a chance to show us what you know about Minnesota. Post your own Minnesota trivia here.

What do you know about the Minnesota flag?


 Flag Day is June 14th, an American holiday intended for people to honor the flag. Each state has its own flag along with interesting facts to go along with it. The Minnesota flag has some particularly interesting facts:
· The word Minnesota comes from the Dakota Sioux Indian language and it translates to “sky tinted waters” because there are 15,215 beautiful blue lakes in Minnesota
· The Minnesota state flag was officially adopted in 1893
· A woman by the name of Amelia Center was the one who originally designed the flag
· The seal is surrounded by 19 stars, representing Minnesota as the 19th state
· In the center of the flag is the state seal, and surrounding it is a wreath of the state flower, the lady slipper
 These symbols are important to Minnesotans because we can all identify with them. Seeing symbols that are significant to our state gives us a sense of unity.

Thanks to for providing information

Submit your own fun facts about Minnesota and statehood.

Posted by: Laura Baratto, Minnesota Sesquicentennial fellow on June 7, 2007

Sesquicentennial Banner Addition

June 5, 2007


The folks at Arrowhead Library System are lucky enough to have a graphic artist on staff who created a companion table tent for the Sesqui Banner that invites visitors to sign the Sesqui Journal.

They were also generous to send us an electronic copy to share with others who host the Banner:  Banner Signature Table Tent.

Thanks ALS!