Old Highway 61Project Officially Launching At Film Fest

Wednesday, September 25th, 2013 at 10:58 am

A formal “launch” of the Old Highway 61 effort to the public will take place at the Pine Technical College Auditorium from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. on Friday, October 4, 2013 in conjunction with the 3rd Annual Highway 61 Film Festival in Pine City, we learned in a press release.  Cathy Wurzer, Host/Anchor of “Morning Edition”, Minnesota Public Radio and award-winning Minnesota journalist, will be the featured speaker at the event, and the public is invited to attend.  Wurzer’s film “Tales of the Road: Highway 61” will be shown at the Pine Technical College Auditorium for the opening of the third annual Highway 61 Film Festival.

According to the release, a group of Old Highway 61 Stakeholders has been working on the effort to preserve and promote Old Highway 61 over the past few months.  In June, 2013, the Initiative Foundation awarded a $2000 matching grant to aid in the effort.The group pushing the old highway 61 project is comprised of representatives from the Chisago County HRA-EDA, City of Pine City, Pine County, North Branch Chamber of Commerce, Carton County EDA and City of Rush City.

Grant dollars were used to host a series of meetings to introduce the idea of collaborating to promote the segment of the Old Highway 61 corridor which extends through Chisago, Pine and Carlton counties. Over 30 “stakeholders” attended meetings in July, August and September to provided input on the proposed project.

A preliminary list and maps identifying over 100 “destinations” within the three counties, along Old Highway 61, have been developed. Destinations highlighted include historic sites, hospitality, natural resources, entertainment and shopping.  In addition, a calendar of festivals and events within the cities and townships in the “Old Highway 61 corridor” has been developed.  Both will be on display at the October 4th Film Festival “Launch

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