- Stay & Play
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- Fairs, Festivals & Events
- Vistors Guide
If you are looking for recreation - we have it! Golfing, Hunting, Fishing, Racing, Biking, Walking, Swimming, Boating, Disc Golf, Bowling, Canoeing, Archery, Sporting Clays, Bus Trips, Youth Sports, Adult Sports, Ecology Center, Berry Picking and a Pumpkin Patch.
If you are looking for some peace and quiet - we have it! Walking Trails, Biking Trails, parks in the woods, parks in the communities, parks by lakes!
Check out the listings below, sample some of our recreation options. Check out the Events Calendar for specific events. Then, come join us in the communities of Jackson County.
Click HERE for Region 2 Snowmobile Trail Map.
The Big Bend Snow Riders snowmobile club maintains about 350 miles of trails in Cottonwood and Jackson counties. Our trails connect with Watonwan county to the east, the Iowa border to the south, Murray county to the west, and Brown county to the north. We also host parts of Minnesota corridor trails #8 and #9 in our county.
We are very pleased to be able to groom the trails in Jackson County this year and are working with a number of interested Jackson County snowmobile enthusiasts. We have purchased and will be running 2 BR 350 groomers along with 1 10' drag and 1 12' drag.
Club meetings are scheduled for the first Monday of each month at the Windom DNR building at 7PM.
Bowler’s Inn in downtown Lakefield is Jackson County’s spot for pulverizing pins. The multi-lane bowling alley is where all of Jackson County goes for the best in food and fun. Enjoy a great meal before hitting the lanes or celebrate a strike with dinner and drinks afterwards.
Lakefield has three city parks. North City Park has new playground equipment, a shelter house with electricity and restrooms, skateboard facilities, grills and gazebo. West City Park has playground equipment, a shelter with electricity, horseshoes, restrooms and a soft ball diamond. The South City Park has playground equipment and tennis court. The Lakefield Family Aquatic Center features four water slides and a zero-depth pool that also has a five-featured water apparatus for little kids and a number of waterspouts that shoot water straight up into the air, a feature many little ones find fun just to run through. Stan King Athletic Complex is located on the east side of Lakefield. Facilities include ball diamonds, sand volleyball and tennis court.
The Des Moines River has few rapids, and none are more difficult than Class I. Several dams must be portaged. Downed trees and logjams can present a hazard occasionally. The width is between 50-200 feet and flows through a flat iron shaped plateau, called the "Coteau de Prairies" by early French explorers.
From Windom to Kilen Woods State Park, the river valley is bounded by low hills and willow, green ash, slippery elm, and various grasses line the banks. The banks become higher near the park; the river flows between 100-200 foot bluffs covered with oak and basswood forest. From Kilen Woods to Jackson there are increasingly taller hills and bluffs. Woodlands crowd the river and screen from view farm buildings and cultivated land.
The Des Moines Valley Sportsman’s Club is for archery and the shooting sports, which is open to members and their guests to enjoy. A covered shooting line with bench area supplied for up to 100 yard rifle and pistol shooting, trap houses for trap, and an archery course. We have two active leagues/shooting activities at this time, the fastest growing shooting sport in the world Cowboy Action Shooting in form of the Fort Belmont Regulators and a 3D archery league with tournaments.
The 9-hole "Emerald Valley" course at the Emerald Valley Golf Club facility in Lakefield, Minnesota features 5,436 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 35 . The course rating is 66.4 and it has a slope rating of 117. Designed by Bloom & Goldstrand, the Emerald Valley golf course opened in 1977
Jackson County's varied terrain of grassy field-side waterways, wooded creek bottoms and hilly tree stands make it an ideal location for hunting any number of species of game. From trophy-sized bucks to good-eating rooster pheasants, Jackson County has it all and more, offering hunters and sportsmen a true rural Minnesota outdoors experience.
Jackson County has nearly 10,000 acres of waterfowl production area (managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) and wild life management area (managed by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources) open for public hunting. Species hunted in the county include big game (white-tailed deer), small game (rabbit, squirrel, partridge and pheasant) and wa ter fowl (ducks and geese).
Call (507) 831-2220 (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service), (507) 831-2917 (State of Minnesota Wildlife Management Area) or (507) 847-4394 (Jackson County DNR Enforcement Officer) with questions of for more information on public hunting.
Jackson County operates and maintains eight parks. The Jackson County Park Board was established in 1966. Through the foresight of this board, it has been possible for Jackson County to purchase and develop 200 acres of parkland into eight of the finest county parks in Minnesota.
As you will see, each of these parks has its own unique natural character. Some have the natural qualities of timber and scenic views of a river or lake, and others have open space for field sports. Which ever you prefer, Jackson County invites you to enjoy this county park system — be it for an hour, a day, or a week. We hope that you enjoy your stay and that the quality of life is improved because of it.
Jackson County Central Schools Community Education offers enrichment courses, programs, bus trips, youth sports, continuing education, and recreation activities for anyone who is interested. Check the announcements for upcoming events and the latest Community Ed Catalog.
The Des Moines River provides aquatic habitat for beaver and muskrat. Resourceful anglers catch walleyes, northerns, catfish, and bullheads from the river's pools and numerous snags. Woodducks nest in tree cavities along the river's edge while herons quietly stalk the shallows and back waters. Deer, squirrels and woodpeckers are abundant in the park. Red admiral butterflies are seen all summer long while the swallowtail butterflies are around during late summer.
At Kilen Woods State Park, trails wind through the park's oak forest, sunny river bottom meadows, flood plain forest, oak savanna and prairie. Oak trees grow on the steep river valley slopes. Scattered bur oak trees, wild plums and hawthorns occur among prairie grasses and wildflowers at the edge of the Des Moines River Valley. Look for big bluestem, Indian grass, blazing-star, and purple coneflowers along the grassy ravines. Seven-foot tall prairie grasses, butterfly milkweed, and grey-headed coneflowers dominate the late summer river bottom prairie.
The Lakefield Family Aquatic Center features four water slides and a zero-depth pool that also has a five-featured water apparatus for little kids and a number of waterspouts that shoot water straight up into the air, a feature many little ones find fun just to run through.
There are numerous lakes in the area for a variety of activities including swimming, boating, fishing, icefishing, waterskiing, wakeboarding, kneeboarding, tubing and whatever your heart desires.
Clear Lake - Located west of Jackson, this 415-acre lake has two boat access ramps and a floating handicapped pier. Fish to be caught are northern, walleye, crappie, bass, perch and bullheads.
Fish Lake - located in the northern part of the county, the lake has a state access boat ramp on the southwest corner and also a floating handicapped pier. Catfish, crappie, walleye, northern, bass, perch, bluegill and bullheads can be caught in this lake.
Heron Lake - located in Heron Lake in the northwestern part of the county, the
Independence Lake - this small 112-acre lake, located in the northeast part of Jackson County, has one boat ramp on the south side. Walleye, crappie, bluegill, perch, northern and bullheads can be hooked out of this lake.
Little Spirit - this 572-acre lake hugs the Iowa line in the south-central part of the county and has a state access boat ramp on the north east. Fish to be caught are northern, walleye, bass, perch, crappie and bullheads.
Loon Lake - found in the south-central part of Jackson County, this 679- acre lake has a boat ramp on the west side and also in Robertson Park. There is also a floating handicapped pier in Robertson Park. Walleye, crappie, northern, bass and bullheads can be caught in Loon Lake.
Pearl Lake - located near Loon Lake, this is a 155-acre lake that has a boat ramp at Anderson Park. Northern, walleye, crap pie, and bullheads are available in the lake.
Round Lake - located in southwest corner of Jackson County, is one of the best places to fish come November, according to Minnesota Sportsman magazine. The 1,024-acre lake was ranked one of the state's top three choices for the fall month in a February issue. The lake has three access points: a double concrete boat ramp on the east side owned by the DNR, a gravel ramp suitable for trailers on the south owned by the township and a county-owned gravel access on the north side. The lake is managed for walleye, yellow perch, black crappie and channel catfish.
Our clubhouse is equipped with a bar and offers snack items. Our facility is large enough to seat groups up to 50 indoors, with extra seating in our outdoor patio area. Call us to inquire about hosting private tournaments or other events.
Did you know...kids age 10 and under pay no greens fees! This isn't a special...its course policy for 2012. Bring out the whole family and introduce the kids to a game that will provide a lifetime of frustration! (or relaxation?...)
The mission of the PEBC is to be a vehicle for understanding and appreciating the natural wonders in our own backyards. The Prairie Ecology Bus Center (PEBC) is based in the southwestern Minnesota town of Lakefield. It is the home of the Prairie Schooler Ecology Bus, a state-of-the-art school, mobile scientific laboratory, and classroom designed to educate school children and adults about the environmental and natural sciences. The Ecology Bus is the only one of its kind in North America and is modeled after a similar bus and program in Sweden. Check our website for more information.