Big Sand Lake Association

committed to the preservation of Big Sand Lake


Big Sand Lake  •  Current News & Events

01/24/2015 - Heartland Bike Trail Extension to Itasca Park

 A recent article in the Park Rapids Enterprise states that the DNR has announced that the “Heartland Spur” trail is on its high priority list and included in the draft of the “Minnesota State Parks and Trails System Plan”. The Heartland Spur is a proposed extension of the Heartland Trail from Park Rapids to Itasca Park. Click here for a copy of the article.


01/24/2015 - Required Training for Anyone Who Owns a Boat Trailer

Tim Conley, BSLA board member, forwarded information he received when renewing some licenses about a new AIS training law that goes into effect on July 1, 2015. This law requires that anyone owning a trailer to transport boats or other watercraft must complete invasive species training and display a trailer decal. The training will be on-line or available in a paper version and take approximately 20-30 minutes. Like boat licenses, training and new decals will be required every 3 years. Cost of the training has not yet been determined. More information and a full FAQ list can be found at


01/24/2015 - Controversy About and Move to Repeal the Training Law

We recently received an email from Rivertown Communications, Inc. stating that there is an effort in the legislature to repeal this training law, (Minnesota Statute 86B.13) and encouraging people to contact their legislators to retain the law. Rivertown Communications has developed a training program that would take less than 30 minutes and cost $5 or $11 depending on the version. Their training program is ready to go and includes an option for persons who arrive at a boat landing who may not have heard of this requirement to quickly obtain an instruction and a temporary permit from a mobile device. Full training could then be completed when the person returns home. Click here for a copy of the message.


There is controversy over the law. An article in the January 3, 2015 issue of the Park Rapids Enterprise by guest columnist, Gary Korsgaden, presents some of the pros and cons on this issue. Click here for a copy of the article.


12/05/2014 - Big Sand Social Activities and Events

Even though the snow may be flying and temperatures have dropped BSLA friends and neighbors are still active. Events and get-togethers are being planned — possibilities include pizza nights, cross-country skiing, Super Bowl viewing, ice fishing tournament?? If you would like to receive email notification of these events, please send a current address to Linda VanBruggen,


12/05/2014 - Cabins at Pine Cone Lodge Available Year Round

Enjoy Big Sand throughout the whole year.  Stay at Pine Cone when your cabin is closed up for the winter.  Pine Cone will pay $40 for a 2015 lake association membership for any Big Sand resident reserving a cabin during the off season. Two night minimum.


Become a Friend of Big Sand

Whether you are a frequent “in-person” visitor to Big Sand or one who only enjoys visiting Big Sand via the webcam, we encourage you to become a “Friend of Big Sand”. This membership category is available to non-residents of Big Sand. The annual dues of $20 will support the activities of the Big Sand Lake Association to preserve, protect and enhance the lake we all love. Click on the "Membership" tab in the left hand column for a convenient on-line, credit card payment process. The option to download and mail in payment is also available.


Charitable Lake Fund

Learn More About the Big Sand Charitable Lake Fund

View Details Here

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This is a copy of “Public Notice Big Sand Lake Public Water Access Site”
as printed in the Park Rapids Enterprise
on  Saturday, September 28, 2013

The Parks & Trails Division of the Department of Natural Resources has obtained an option to purchase a 0.56 acre percel of land located in Section 35, Township 141 North, Range 34 West, Lake Emma Township, Hubbard County, Minnesota, owned by Polly A. Boggs, for the purpose of improving the existing public water access site in the southeast corner of Big Sand Lake. Proposed improvements would include a new and expanded bituminous parking area, a double concrete plank ramp with floating docks, stormwater retention ponds to accommodate runoff and aquatic invasive species best management practices. Provisins would be made for portable toilets. One residential structure and a detached garage are located on the site. The project would be tentatively scheduled for the 2015 construction season.

Comments will be accepted from the public concerning this proposal until 4:30 p.m. Thursday, October 31, 2013. Comments can be sent to David Schotzko, Area Supervisor, Department of Natural Resources, Parks & Trails Division, 3296 State Park Road NE, Bemidji, MN 56601 or