It’s a fact, winter in The Bemidji Area is a LONG season! However, winter is the favorite season of many who live here. If it’s adventure and natural beauty you enjoy, you are in the right place! There is such a great variety of winter activities that you are sure to find a few that might just make winter in The Bemidji Area your favorite season as well.
Get out and play!
People in Bemidji are serious about getting outside in the winter! The winter activity in this community are endless. Here are some of our favorite things to do and places to visit in the area during the cold months.
Ice Skating at Nymore Ice Rink
It may come as a surprise but not every Minnesotan is born knowing how to ice skate! Even if you’ve never been on skates or it’s been years since you last hit the ice, Bemidji has great community rinks ready for you to give it a try. Skate rental and a warming house is waiting for you at the Nymore Outdoor Ice Rink so lace ’em up and get out there!
Cross Country Skiing/Snowshoeing
There are SO MANY gorgeous places around Bemidji to explore when you have set of cross country skis or snowshoes. Our favorites include Movil Maze with it’s beautiful warming house, and Three Island Park with its stunning rivers. Ski and snowshoe equipment is available for rent from a couple great local places:
Snowshoes: Visit Bemidji Tourist Center
Snowshoes/Ski Packages: BSU Outdoor Program Center
Sledding at Library Park
Right downtown at the Lake Bemidji waterfront is Library Park with the most perfect sledding hill. Go in the evening when the First City of Lights has the whole area lit up and make memories to last a lifetime! Park in the adjacent lot and take a quick selfie with Paul and Babe.. You can bring your own sled or use one of the sleds waiting for you in the “Sled Library” provided by Bemidji Parks and Rec.
Ice Fishing on area lakes
If you’ve never pulled a flopping fish out of a hole in the ice, you might not understand the area’s obsession with ice fishing. It’s not just about catching fish, it’s the whole ice fishing experience. It’s the hours spent playing cards, eating snacks, and the occasional excitement of a rattle reel getting everyone’s attention. For equipment, bait, and info on where the fish are biting head over to locally owned Northwoods Bait & Tackle on the west side of Lake Bemidji.
Snow Tubing/Skiing at Buena Vista Ski Area
When you are ready for more action, head out to the beautiful Buena Vista Ski Area. You can ski or snowboard some of the prettiest hills in the area. Buena Vista looks like the scene from a Hallmark Christmas Movie complete with hot chocolate. They also have a snow tubing hill with rope lift to help you back up. Rentals available on site.
Head inside to warm up!
No matter how many layers you have on and no matter how much you love the brisk air of winter, there are times in Bemidji when it’s just TOO COLD to play outside. Here’s some of the best indoor activities during the winter months in Bemidji.
Ruttger’s Birchmont Lodge Bar Bingo @ The Cove Saturdays
With a gorgeous view of Lake Bemidji, complimentary popcorn, and BINGO you can’t go wrong heading to The Cove at Ruttger’s for Saturday Bar Bingo. Enjoy a full bar, delicious food and great company and maybe win some money while you’re at it.
Brigid’s Pub Monday Night Trivia
Located in downtown Bemidji, Brigid’s Irish Pub seems to be made for cold Bemidji days. It’s cozy, laid back atmosphere will make you feel right at home. They have creative burgers of the week that are everything you didn’t know you needed. Brigid’s hosts Trivia on Monday Nights which is the perfect excuse to grab a couple friends and make this a weekly tradition.
Bemidji State University Hockey Game
The folks up here LOVE their hockey and there’s no better way to watch it live than a Bemidji State University Hockey Game at The Sanford Center. You can get close to the action for a reasonable price and enjoy local Stittsworth Brats while taking in the game.
Raphael’s Donuts and Coffee
When you are ready to rub elbows with some of the longest Bemidji residents, head over to Raphael’s Bakery Cafe in downtown Bemidji. This place has hands down BEST donuts and waitstaff in the area. You will feel at home from the moment you walk in and see all the regulars. Be sure to get some of their amazing bakery items to take home once you’ve finished your meal.
Bemidji Brewing Happy Hour and Games
There’s no better place in town to kill an hour or two between your outside activities. Bemidji Brewing in downtown Bemidji is a family friendly, locally owned, and a great place for meeting up with friends and family. There’s always playing cards and games available to keep everyone happy while you enjoy award winning locally brewed beer.
Every season in Bemidji offers a unique collection of great activities to enjoy, so check back in a few months for our spring must do list! If you are new to the area, thinking about a visit, or considering making Bemidji your home reach out to us! We’d love to tell you more about what the Bemidji Community has to offer.