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Tend the native prairie bluff at Indian Mounds Park

June 22, 2021 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Indian Mounds Regional Park (Makapaha in the Dakota language) is a burial site, home to six of the remaining burial mounds made by the Indigenous people of this region. Fifty or more mounds once sat atop the bluff, overlooking Wakáŋ Tipi, “dwelling place of the sacred” in the Dakota language, and future site of the Wakáŋ Tipi Center at Bruce Vento Nature Sanctuary. The mounds make this whole region a sacred place to many Indigenous communities throughout the midwest.

While FMR works to restore this blufftop prairie, we need to acknowledge the long history and sacred nature of this site. We encourage you to learn more from our partners at Lower Phalen Creek Project.

FMR volunteers — including students from nearby Harding High Earth Club, community members (including Friends of Mounds Park) and individuals and families from throughout the metro area — have been restoring the native bluff prairie at the historic Indian Mounds Park’s overlook since 2011.

Volunteers are now needed to lend a hand working with FMR staff to tend to native prairie plants previously installed by other Indian Mounds Park stewards. By removing invasive species and assisting with other tending tasks, volunteers will help native plants thrive and make it through the summer. Thanks to their deep roots, these prairie plants help anchor the steep bluff soil and filter pollutants, such as oil and lawn chemicals, carried to the bluff by stormwater. They also provide important bee, butterfly and bird habitat.

All are welcome, but capacity is limited and registration is required. As always, all tools and training will be provided and volunteers are encouraged to work at their own pace and comfort level.

Before you register

Volunteers should be prepared to work on steep and uneven terrain. Our activities will range from lower-intensity hand-pulling or digging up weeds, to using tools like saws and loppers to remove woody invasives.

Ready to register?

To sign up and receive directions to the meeting spot, contact FMR Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator Sophie Downey at sdowney@fmr.org, 651-222-2193 x27. Please include the name of the event, your name, address, phone number and the number in your party. Due to our smaller event sizes, we ask that you limit groups to 4 or fewer.

You will receive a confirmation email from sdowney@fmr.org within two business days. (If you don’t, please check your spam or promotions folder.) 

If you’re under 18 and interested in volunteering without the company of your parent or guardian, please take a moment and have them fill out this brief minor permission form.

Can’t make it?

To receive notices of future volunteer events, contact FMR Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator Sophie Downey at sdowney@fmr.org. Or, visit our Events Calendar for our most up-to-date listing of upcoming events. To receive a twice-a-month e-newsletter including all FMR activities and news, sign up for Mississippi Messages.

What about COVID-19?

We’ve modified our events during the pandemic to be smaller, and allow for individuals to work while safely six feet apart. All tools will be sanitized between events, and all gloves provided are unused in 2020 or 2021. Once registered, volunteers will receive a full list of safety precautions and guidelines. You can read more about our policies here.

We’re watching the CDC and Minnesota Department of Health guidelines closely. If plans change based on their recommendations, FMR Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator Sophie Downey will email registrants with event updates. (Be sure to add sdowney@fmr.org to your contacts so updates don’t land in spam.) And we’ll update this page if anything changes.

We will offer gloves and hand sanitizer at the event. Volunteers are required to bring and wear their own masks.


June 22, 2021
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm


Friends of the Mississippi River
View Organizer Website


Indian Mounds Park
10 Mounds Boulevard
Saint Paul, MN 55106 United States
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