Image courtesy Associated Press

As of Friday, Minnesota’s Upper Sioux Agency State Park is closed to the public, but the land has finally returned to the Upper Sioux Community.

Commissioner John Berends of Granite Falls says in closing the park, Minnesota has now betrayed both parties involved in the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862. Berends says “The biggest danger is the division amongst our people. We spent 150 years healing from what happened, and all of this and the procedures the state has taken to do things behind the scenes aren’t helping that process.”

A handful of meetings were held in Granite Falls to discuss future recreational opportunities in the area after the park is closed. Still, Berends says he believes it was to “pacify folks” while gathering information about how to spend money for recreational opportunities now that the park is closed.

(Learfield News Service)