Community: Healthy Foods

Our first Community intervention focuses on Nutrition. This is an important strategy, as poor nutrition contributes to a wide variety of chronic conditions. The strategy is to implement policies, practices, and environmental changes that improve access to nutritious foods, such as fruits and vegetables. The Surgeon General advises all people to eat plenty of fresh, healthy, unprocessed foods. However, many people do not have easy access to these foods and many more unaware of the nutritional content of the ready-to-eat foods that are available to them.

Click here to learn about Bemidji Area Food Shelf and Community Garden

This intervention will assist at least one community in each county to work on one of the following: to offer Healthy Corner Store Initiatives, to promote Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), to begin menu labeling, to increase the number of farmers markets, to increase zoning for healthy foods, or to begin community gardens.

The work in our first six months will be to secure a community assessment of our local food system and to create either local or regional food policy councils. Action plans will be completed with individual county strategies to improve access to nutritious foods for our most at-risk populations.

Minnesota Grown Farmers Markets

Success Story 1: Park Rapids Farmers Market

Success Story 2: Bagley Farmers Market

Success Story 3: Bemidji Food Shelf

Success Story 4: Baudette Farmers Market

Community: Active Living

Physical Activity is the focus of our second community intervention. The dual focus for communities is meant to create synergy for improving health. In Active Living, we will implement policies and practices that create active communities by increasing opportunities for non-motorized transportation (walking and biking) and access to community recreation facilities. Matthew Dyrdahl, from Headwaters Regional Development Commission, will oversee all aspects of our Active Living intervention.



The first six month work plan, which is consistent with SHIP action steps, is to conduct community assessments in each of the four counties of the nonmotorized transportation and recreation policies, practices, and facilities and to engage our community stakeholders. With that completed, an community action plan will be competed. It is the goal to have an Active Living Coalition in each of our counties, with expansion of the Active Living Coalition within Beltrami County.

Implementation of this intervention will also be unique in each community based on the characteristics of the natural and built environment, existing transportation and recreational facilities, interest in and resources available for new transportation and recreational facilities.

The North Country National Scenic Trail (NCT) has many miles in Clearwater and Hubbard Counties. The NCT is open to year-round non-motorized uses including hiking, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, walking and enjoying the beautiful scenery. The NCT is free to use and open to all. More information including an interactive map may be found online at:


Success Story 1: Biking Trails

Success Story 2: 

Success Story 3:

Our Partners:


Ways to Get Active

Staying Active in the North Country                      

Parks and Trails

Active Living policies and practices in community design, land use, and facility access have been proven effective to increase levels of physical activity.  These include policies that support non-motorized transportation and access to community recreation facilities.

Parks & Recreation

Click on each of the links below to explore the Parks, Trails, and Activities available in each of the 4 counties.

Beltrami County


Clearwater County

Hubbard County

Lake of The Woods County

Public Health

Minnesota Public Health

Click on the image for information about Minnesota Public Health