Tucked along the banks of the Root River in Southeastern Minnesota you’ll find a hidden gem….Historic Lanesboro, pop 754. Discover a slower pace of life with no chain stores, fast food franchises, or stop lights. This quaint town site offers invigorating outdoor adventures, breathtaking views, rich artistic and cultural experiences, unique shopping, locally grown foods, wine and fine dining. Strolling down the quiet streets of Lanesboro is like taking a step back in time. The downtown area is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The two and three story frame, brick and stone buildings have changed very little since they were first built by immigrants who settled here a century and a half ago.
Lanesboro’s downtown is along a Great American Main Street. Enjoy the beauty and charm of historic downtown Lanesboro. The Lanesboro area is known for its great restaurants and fresh, locally-grown food. Whether it’s a romantic dinner with wine and candlelight or a down home, local experience; we’ve got your appetites and tastes covered. You can delight in outdoor dining, gourmet cuisine, scrumptious breakfasts, or pie and ice cream. Relax at the local saloon or martini lounge.
Lanesboro’s local merchants offer hand crafted items including fine art, outdoor gear and jewelry from fine to funky. Browse a local resale shop, paint your own pottery, select locally made soaps and lotions and sample delectable wines made from local fruits. The Lanesboro Farmer’s Market is held Saturday mornings in Sylvan Park offering locally grown products, soaps, produce, plants, baked goods, preserves, eggs, meats, honey & syrup. The Lanesboro Sales Commission conducts livestock auctions on Wednesdays and Fridays. Farmers from the tri-state area bring in their livestock for these auctions.
Lanesboro provides accommodations for the overnight traveler, the weekend explorer or the family vacation. Lanesboro is recognized as being the Bed & Breakfast Capital of Minnesota with the most licensed B&Bs of any city in the state. Be greeted with small town hospitality. Enjoy a wide variety of quality accommodations with all the modern amenities you expect. Bed & Breakfasts offer scrumptious multiple-course breakfasts. Unwind in a historic inn, privately owned hotel, resort, whole house rental or RV/campground, all nestled in the scenic Lanesboro area.
Lanesboro is known for its scenic beauty and was named one of America’s Prettiest Towns by Yahoo! Travel / Forbes Traveler for scenic beauty and small town charm. Minnesota Monthly Magazine also called Lanesboro “a quirky crossroads of the arts and outdoors” and one of 10 Small Town Weekend Trips in Hidden Minnesota!
In Lanesboro, the arts thrive. Take in a spirited comedy or stirring drama in a state of the art theater, view work by talented regional artists and attend a lively gallery opening. Extraordinary exhibits appear year round at the Lanesboro Arts Center and St. Mane Theatre, featuring a variety of regional artists. More than 20,000 people attend live professional theatre annually at the acclaimed professional Commonweal Theatre Company. The Commonweal contributes to the local one-of-a-kind Ibsen Festival by producing plays by the great Norwegian playwright, Henrik Ibsen. Special rates for groups are available throughout the year.
Biking lovers rave about the spectacular paved Root River State Bike Trail that winds 60 miles through the valley with Lanesboro at its heart. It runs along an abandoned railroad bed through towering limestone bluffs, forestlands, rolling fields and pure inspiration. Take an adventurous canoe, tube or kayak trip down the Root River. Enjoy fishing, bird walks, or a round of golf.
Sylvan Park is considered by many to be one of the finest city parks in the state. Its two spring-fed ponds offer fresh catches for the evening campfire. Camping (with electric hookups, a dumping station and hot showers) is a half-block from the river, the dam and the downtown area. Picnic shelters, electricity and bathrooms are also available to picnickers, tenters and campers. Two lighted, regulation size tennis courts, horseshoe pits and sand volleyball courts, along with a friendly flock of ducks, enables anyone to have an enjoyable stay at the park.
Eagle Bluff Environmental Learning Center is located just north of Lanesboro on a bluff above the north branch of the Root River. The center provides environmental education, conference center facilities, woodland and mushroom demonstrations and workshops. The State DNR Fish Hatchery, located outside Lanesboro, produces more trout per year than any other state hatchery. Trout fishermen will delight in the knowledge that nearly all the trout raised at the Hatchery are stocked in local streams.
Experience a culture rich in history and a landscape of natural beauty. Enjoy the charm of the Lanesboro area from an Old Order Amish Tour. Watch them working their fields with horse drawn equipment. In Sylvan Park, you may find the Amish selling produce, baked goods, traditional woodcrafts and quilting. Look for them in their black horse-drawn buggies, moving briskly through town. You can visit a cold water fish hatchery, or explore amazing caves. Take a walking tour of Historic Lanesboro and tour a historic inn or an elegant Victorian home.
For old-fashioned fun and tradition, attend one of our annual festivals. Enthusiasm abounds…Lanesboro is a refreshing escape any time of the year, offering festivals and events for all seasons. Whalan’s Stand Still Parade is an unusual event where the parade doesn’t move, the spectators do! Lanesboro is the Rhubarb Capital of Minnesota, so join us to celebrate the sweet tart favorite the first Saturday each June. Enjoy Art in the Park on Father’s Day, Buffalo Bill Days in August, and the Whalan Candlelight Ski early February.
The Lanesboro Depot houses the DNR Trail Center, the Lanesboro Area Chamber and Visitor Center and public restrooms. Built entirely with community support, the Depot is reminiscent of the original train stop along the downtown section of the trail. The Scanlan Building houses the Lanesboro Museum. The two story museum is filled with local artifacts, the wood carvings of Hans Olson, and the upstairs rooms are set in
late 1800’s furnishings.
It is easy to see why people return time and again to renew themselves in Lanesboro’s riches. Come, create your own memories! www.lanesboro.com