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Kinnickinnic State ParkHistory

Shortly after the establishment of the first Wisconsin state parks in the early 20th century, the land around the mouth of the Kinnickinnic River was identified as a potential park. Yet, for various reasons, many decades passed without the area being established as a park.

As the Twin Cities metropolitan area expanded into western Wisconsin in the 1960s, several landowners in the area became determined to preserve the natural beauty of the land where the Kinnickinnic and St. Croix rivers meet.

With the help of key citizen groups including the Save Our St. Croix Association and the Minnesota Wisconsin Boundary Area Commission, these visionary citizens proposed creation of a new state park.

In a memorable effort to make the park a reality, three families donated parcels of their land to the state. Carl and Alice Pemble, Homer and Mildred Creswell and George and Wilma Richter donated a total of 45 acres to the Department of Natural Resources for creation of a new state park. These gifts, combined with the overwhelming support of the remainder of the affected landowners, so impressed the Natural Resources Board that they established Kinnickinnic State Park in 1972.

The tradition of giving continued after the establishment of the state park. Volunteers have devoted considerable time, effort and financial support to developing the park. More than 20,000 trees have been planted, about 50 acres of prairie restored and about 6.5 miles of hiking trails developed largely due to the efforts of volunteers. Donations and volunteers have supplemented our limited resources in many ways. If you are interested in joining the effort, please contact the park staff.

Last revised: Friday October 17 2014