Lt. Gov. Tina Smith, along with Department of Natural Resources Commissioner Tom Landwehr, have announced that admission to all of Minnesota's state parks and recreation areas will be waived on Friday, November 27. It'll be a "Free Park Friday."

Gov. Mark Dayton had also proclaimed Friday, November 2, to be Free Park Friday.

On a typical Thanksgiving Day, the average American consumes about 4,500 calories. A brisk walk can burn about 300 calories in an hour. What better place to walk than in one of our state parks?

State parks less than an hour's drive from Owatonna include:

Minnesota's state parks contribute to a $13 billion tourism industry in Minnesota. A study done in 2012 by the DNR found that Minnesota state parks draw in more than $230 million in spending to local communities each year.

This Friday after Thanksgiving, give it a try and try out one of Minnesota's state parks free of charge.

State Parks play an important role in Minnesota's economy.