The solstice is coming up! Friday, June 21 will be the longest day of the year with somewhere around 16 hours of sunlight. If you have the privilege of being on Minnesota's Whitefish Chain of Lakes on the solstice, you'll get to enjoy a longer day than much of the country, thanks to our northerly location. The sun will rise at 5:23 a.m. on the 21st and it won't set until 9:14 p.m. We want to help you make the most of your longest day of the year, so here are a few ideas:
You might want to start your day on one of the many walking and biking trails around the Whitefish Chain. Any of the trails listed on our site offer a great opportunity to observe and enjoy the area's precious natural surroundings. While you're out, you might want to do some birding. Keep an eye out for local wildlife, like deer, beavers, loons and turtles.
Next you'll want to hit the first Duck Races of the season! The Pine River Duck Races are always great fun. For just $1 you purchase a numbered duck decoy. At the starting blast of a shotgun, all the numbered ducks are ceremoniously dumped from the dam into the water to compete to be the first downstream. Volunteers await at the finish line and if the duck with your number makes it to the finish line first, you win! Second and third place also win prizes, as does the slow duck. The ducks that win in each heat compete at the very end of the event for the "Grand Duck-Off." Duck Races are every Friday through the summer at the dam in Pine River, and registration begins at 1:3o p.m. with the first flight at 2 p.m.
After that you'll want to have the quintessential summertime snack- ice cream. Check out any of the area's tasty ice cream stores for a treat to cool you down on the hot summer day.
The Whitefish Chain is famous for its lakes for a reason- they're beautiful and we're proud to have them as our area's gems. So, on your longest day of summer, it seems only fitting that you get out on the water. We suggest kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, or renting a boat for some fishing or a cruise around on a pontoon. Getting out on the water is a one-of-a-kind experience- no wonder it's so popular. If you want to do something different, look into tubing the Pine River!
By this time you will have definitely worked up an appetite, so head to any of the area's dining options- you really can't lose.
At the end of the day, we suggest you watch the sunset. If you're staying at any of our wonderful lodging choices, chances are you've got a front row view of a lakeshore sunset, and really nothing is better. Enjoy the last sunlight of the day over the water. Your longest day of the year has been well spent.