Pheasant Hunting Opener

Governor Tim Walz to host the 2024 Pheasant Hunting Opener in Sleepy Eye MN

Sleepy Eye, Minnesota has been selected to host the 2024 Minnesota Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener, Governor Tim Walz announced last week.

The small town, located in Brown County in south central Minnesota, will welcome the governor and other dignitaries on October 11-12, 2024 for the annual event that kicks off the state’s pheasant hunting season.

I am thrilled that the community of Sleepy Eye will host next year’s Minnesota Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener. After a strong kick off to this year’s pheasant hunting season, I’m already looking forward to our time in Sleepy Eye and for the community to carry on the tradition of a fantastic opener next year, highlighting strong communities and exceptional public lands.

Governor Walz

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Why Sleepy Eye?

The Sleepy Eye Chamber of Commerce and Convention & Visitors Bureau submitted an application to host the 2024 opener.

The town was chosen based on available hunting lands, tourism opportunities, community support, and travel accessibility.

“Sleepy Eye, Brown County and its area sporting and wildlife organizations have a strong history of collaborating together, so we are confident this event will be another great opportunity to showcase our southern Minnesota hospitality, habitat and hunting.”

Christina Andres, Sleepy Eye chamber of commerce executive director

Outdoor Heritage

Situated on the banks of Sleepy Eye Lake, which offers excellent fishing, Sleepy Eye has a rich outdoor heritage that makes it a fitting host for the pheasant hunting opener. There are quality pheasant habitats located on public lands near the town.

With a population just over 3,400 people, Sleepy Eye provides a small town atmosphere and community feel.

The town is located at the intersection of U.S. Highway 14 and Minnesota Highway 4, putting it within easy reach of hunters across the state.

Annual Tradition of the Pheasant Hunt

The Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener event started in 2011 as a way to highlight the state’s pheasant hunting opportunities. It also spotlights small town Minnesota communities.

This will be the 12th annual pheasant opener. Previous host cities include Montevideo, Marshall, Madelia, Worthington, Mankato, Luverne, Austin, and Owatonna.

Promoting Tourism

Hosting the opener provides an economic boost to Sleepy Eye through increased tourism, hotel stays, meals at local restaurants, and visits to area businesses.

It also promotes the town and Brown County region to potential future visitors.

Activities often include hunts for the governor, media personalities, and local hunters, a community festival, and outdoor exhibits and demos.

Sleepy eye Pride

Residents are likely already gearing up to welcome the influx of visitors next October.

The community has a year to plan activities, events, and facilities that will spotlight Sleepy Eye’s outdoor recreation, tourism, and Midwestern charm.

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