GMPT provides the links below as a resource for existing grant and funding resources.
Please email us at email@example.com with other suggestions & sources.
Currently accepting applications:
National Outdoor Recreation Legacy Partnership (ORLP) Program – The ORLP program, funded through the Land and Water Conservation Fund, is a nationally competitive grant program that delivers funding to urban areas — jurisdictions of at least 50,000 people — with priority given to projects located in economically disadvantaged areas and lacking in outdoor recreation opportunities.
To be eligible, an applicant must be one of the following:
- Political subdivision of the state, that is, cities, towns, counties, and special purpose districts such as park districts.
- Federally recognized Indian tribes that are organized to govern themselves and perform the functions of a general purpose unit of government.
- State agencies.
In addition, eligible applicants must meet both of the following criteria:
- Represent a jurisdiction of at least 50,000 people as indicated by the 2010 Census AND
- Be situated within or contiguous with the geographic boundary of one of the 497 urbanized areas delineated by the Census Bureau.
Eligible projects include acquisition or development (or a combination) of lands and facilities that will provide outdoor recreation opportunities to the public. All projects must meet requirements for perpetual outdoor recreation use.
The ORLP Program has $150 million available nationwide. The minimum grant is $300,000 and the maximum is $5 million. Projects require a minimum of 1:1 match from non-federal sources. Applications are due to the DNR by Aug. 31.
No longer accepting applications for this year/round of funding:
Local Trails Connection Program – Grants ranging from $5,000 to $150,000 are available for local units of government for the acquisition or development of short trail connections between where people live and desirable locations. A 25 percent match is required. Priority is given to projects that provide significant connectivity. Applications were due March 31, 2021.
Regional Trail Grant Program – Grants ranging from $5,000 to $250,000 are available for the development of trails in Greater Minnesota of regional or statewide significance. A 25 percent cash match is required. Applications were due March 31, 2021.
Natural and Scenic Area Grants – Grants up to $500,000 are available to local governments for acquisition of natural and scenic land for development. The 2020-2024 State Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP) provides guidance on priorities. A maximum of 50 percent of total project costs will be reimbursed. Applications were due March 31, 2021.
Outdoor Recreation Grant Program – Grants of up to 50 percent of project costs (with a maximum award of $250,000) are available to local governments to increase and enhance outdoor recreation facilities in local and community parks. Acquisition and development or development projects are eligible including internal park trails, picnic shelters, playgrounds, athletic facilities, boat accesses, fishing piers, swimming beaches and campgrounds. The SCORP guidelines will establish priorities for this grant program. Applications were due March 31, 2021.
Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund – Approximately $70 million from the lottery-generated fund is available for projects that aim to protect, conserve, preserve, and enhance Minnesota’s air, water, land, fish, wildlife, and other natural resources. Applicants must submit proposals through the LCCMR’s online proposal and grant management system. Proposals were due April 2, 2021.
Federal Recreational Trail Program – Grants between $1,000 and $150,000 will be awarded for maintenance/restoration of recreational trails; development or rehabilitation of recreational trail linkages or trail head facilities; environmental awareness and safety education programs, and redesign or relocation of trails to benefit the environment. All projects must be sponsored by a unit of government, but preference is given to projects done in cooperation with a local trail organization or that involve youth corps worker groups. A 25 percent cash or in-kind match is required. Applications were due Feb. 26, 2021.
No Child Left Inside grant program – The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources administers this grant program which aims provide grants for outdoor environmental, ecological and other natural-resource-based education and recreation programs serving youth. The Phase 1 mini grants program closed on Oct. 23, 2019, and the application deadline for Phase 2 was Jan. 9, 2020.
Conservation Partners Legacy (CPL) Grant Program – The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources administers this grant program that funds conservation projects that restore, enhance, or protect forests, wetlands, prairies, and habitat for fish, game, and wildlife in Minnesota. This program provides competitive matching grants from $5,000 to $400,000 to local, regional, state and national nonprofit organizations, including government entities. The FY 2020 application period for round three of this grant program closed Jan. 21, 2020.
Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund – Funds projects that help maintain and enhance Minnesota’s environment and natural resources. See LCCMR’s 2021 Request for Proposal (RFP) for information on how to apply. The deadline to apply was April 30, 2020.