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The Best of Bemidji

IN THE TRUE NORTHWOODS OF MINNESOTA
First City on The Mississippi
Birthplace of Paul & Babe
First City of Arts & Culture
The True Northwoods

The Legend of Paul & Babe

First City on the Mississippi

Bemidji… The First City on the Mississippi – where this historic river begins its 2,552 mile journey to rendezvous with the famed city of New Orleans. Legend promises those who step across the Mississippi River at its source will live a long and fruitful life, and that great riches will come to them. With twenty-five percent of Minnesota’s recreational lakes found here, the mighty Mississippi is just one of many, famous sky blue waters to be enjoyed in Bemidji,

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The Legend of Paul & Babe

Birthplace of Paul and Babe

In the winter of 1937, it took 737 man-hours to construct Paul Bunyan.  Babe, his Blue Ox, joined him a year later, after retiring as a parade float. Proudly standing along the shore of Lake Bemidji at the Tourist Information Center, the statues are recognized as the second most photographed icon in the nation, and Bemidji is honored as the birthplace of this famous lumberjack and his pal. Evidence of this honored distinction is woven throughout Bemidji’s history and still found in Bemidji’s lifestyle.

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The Legend of Paul & Babe

First City of Arts & Culture

From pow wows to Sankta Lucia Festivals, Scandinavian and Native American cultures are woven together into a fine tapestry throughout Bemidji’s history, and continue to flourish in the area’s art community.  It is here that cultures are celebrated through age-old techniques and traditions. As the cultural center of northern Minnesota, Bemidji offers unmatched opportunities for both participants and spectators of the visual and performing arts.

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The Legend of Paul & Babe

The True Northwoods

The forests surrounding Bemidji form the pristine heart of the northwoods. Add the over 2,400 sparkling waterways and a Continental Divide, and you have beautiful, breathtaking vistas to be viewed around every corner. Visit the oldest national forest, the Chippewa National Forest with 1.5 million acres and 78 miles of non-motorized recreational trails. The Lost Forty offers a rare glimpse of an untouched area of northwoods forest. The hiking paths found at Itasca State Park (Minnesota’s oldest and most popular state park) and Lake Bemidji State Park (located minutes from downtown Bemidji), each have some of the most breathtaking vistas to be found anywhere.

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