Experience it all… a unique mix of small town community, recreation, industry, historical significance and modern convenience. Once selected as ‘Outstanding Community’ by the Initiative Foundation, Pine City is a hub of activity as Pine County’s largest city and the county seat.For generations, Pine City (est. 1881) has been the place where people gather, businesses prosper and where visitors feel at home. Located on the south end of Pine County and just north of the Twin Cities, Pine City offers easy access from anywhere, making it ideal for exciting day trips and enjoyable weekend getaways. Visitors can enjoy the easy access to Pine City through the I35 Business Loop or take in the scenery and experiences along this stretch of the historic Old Hwy 61 commemorative highway. Situated on the shores of the meandering Snake River, between Cross and Pokegama Lakes, Pine City invites you to peruse the distinctive shops and experience the variety of arts, music, historical and community events. You’ll want to come back again and again after you experience “North. Nice and close.”
Step back into history and experience the adventures of the Fur Traders of the 1800s at the North West Company Fur Post. Located just west of Pine City, the Fur Post offers visitors an authentic reconstruction of a wintering post on its original site. Enjoy guided tours or one of the many special programs offered each month including the widely attended Fall Gathering in September.
A true recreation haven, Pine City boasts over 3,000 acres of navigable waterway for anglers, boaters and anyone looking to relax on the water. With Pokegama Lake to the west, Cross Lake to the east, and the meandering Snake River to connect them together – there’s room for everyone on Pine City’s waterways. This includes a DNR launch access at the north end of downtown and a convenient dock slip access right across the shore for short-term parking to explore downtown and complement your boating experience!
Pine County has 82 lakes of various sizes located primarily within the county. You can find information about all Minnesota lakes by using the DNR Lake Finder.
For those that enjoy the peace of the outdoors, the Snake River Campground is located near the entrance to trail systems that allow access to Chengwatana. Campsites are available on a first-come, first serve basis and more information can be obtained through State Park Reservation System. Other state parks located within Pine County include St. Croix State Park and Banning State Park.
Places of Interest ~ Arts
The Pine City Arts Council recently celebrated its 40th year providing art opportunities in the Pine City community. The volunteer group hosts the weekly Art in the Park music series on Friday evenings from Memorial Weekend through the end of July. The Art Fest is another great tradition dating back to 1977. The arts and craft sale is held in Downtown Robinson Park and includes artists from throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin.
The local community theater group, Pine City Heritage Players, has become the premier location in East Central Minnesota to experience theater. While the group name reflects the performance location, the company draws interest from Rush City, North Branch, Harris, Braham, Mora & Hinckley; providing the group with a quality set of performers for shows. Recently the group has added a summer musical to their annual schedule and we look forward to continued growth from this group.
Pine City's newest arts venture is the Pine Center for the Arts, a group with a vision to make the arts accessible to everyone in the community. This non-profit charity has a space located in Downtown Pine City that provides a gallery space to feature both local and regional artists. The space doubles as a classroom for weekly music lessons and art class opportunities in jewelry making, painting, knitting, photography & more. The Highway 61 Film Festival is organized by volunteers each year with the Art Center serving as the sponsor.