The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reports a good 2017 with a number of improvements and upticks. Overnight stays at state parks were up 4.1% in 2017 compared to 2016 and sales of year-round state park vehicle permits increased by 4.5%. The DNR added 2 new K9 dogs to the agency's resources to help locate zebra mussels attached to all types of water related equipment. This brought the dog count to 4 which can sniff out zebra mussels.

Several new state fishing records were set in 2017. They include a 4 pound 7 ounce golden redhorse along with a 5 pound 5 ounce short-nose gar. There were also 2 caught and released lake sturgeons that were 70 inches long and there was also a catch and release flathead catfish that measured 53 inches.

Minnesota deer hunters had success in 2017 with almost 199,000 deer harvested compared to 173,213 in 2016.

Last year the DNR also expanded Information Center hours and added new parks benefits for veterans.