Quality of Life

 Wadena County is home to 21 of some of the state’s cleanest lakes, with several great fishing lakes and extrodinary sand beaches. The Crow Wing River is a popular destination for tubing, canoeing, camping, and snowmobiling. Smaller scenic rivers include the Red Eye River running through Sebeka, and the Leaf River near Wadena. The Huntersville State Forest at the North end of Wadena County is a only a short distance from Itasca State Park and offers a great alternative to the more developed and heavily used state park. The entire county offers exceptional hunting and hiking opportunities.

Camping and Outdoor Recreation: Most communities in the county have developed parks that provide camper hookups and other camping facilities such as showers and wi-fi for visitors within their cities. Frisbee golf, skate parks, playgrounds and beaches are other community park offerings. The rural parts of the county are peppered with additional campgrounds and resorts. Blacks Grove Park in Wadena provides groomed cross-country skiing trails in the winter, and top-rate mountain bike and hiking trails in the summer. The Leaf River Bike Route provides a 10+ mile route adjoining the White Tail Run Golf Course. The Wadena County Trailbreakers Snowmobile Route gives sledders an option to get out and about in the winter. Green Island Preserve is a private, reforested green space showcasing ecological goods and services.

Golf: There are two 18 hole golf courses—Blueberry Pines near Menahga and White Tail Run between Sebeka and Wadena.

Festivals and Celebrations: Each community has at least one large annual outdoor celebration, including the Menahga Mid-Summer Festival, the Sebeka Red Eye River Days, Nimrod Jubilee Days, and of course Wadena County Fair.

Indoor Recreation and Culture: The Cozy Theatre in Wadena combines a traditional theater building from 1914 with all the latest comforts and technologies, including 3-D films. The site hosts an annual 3 day film festival late summer. The Depot in Wadena offers music and cultural opportunities, and top-quality artists and performers can also be found at neighboring Long Lake Theater and New York Mills Regional Cultural Center. There are 4 Historical Societies in Wadena County, a public library, a bookmobile service, and several public wi-fi hotspots. Recreation centers, gyms, indoor pools, and a bowling alley provide indoor physical activity.

Groups and Organizations: There are also ample community groups, ranging from civic groups such as Lions and Rotary, to niche groups such as wood carvers’ and square dancers’ clubs. Community Education newsletters keep people informed of these and other opportunities for enrichment and involvement.