Split Rock Lighthouse, Jeffers Petroglyphs to Reopen July 15

For immediate release

Release dated: 
June 17, 2020
Media contacts: 

Jessica Kohen, Strategic Communications, 651-259-3148, jessica.kohen@mnhs.org
Julianna Olsen, Strategic Communications, 651-259-3071, julianna.olsen@mnhs.org

Split Rock Lighthouse, Jeffers Petroglyphs to Reopen July 15

Other MNHS historic sites and museums remain temporarily closed as staffing decisions are announced.

In light of the Governor’s recent lifting of restrictions regarding museums and outdoor spaces, Split Rock Lighthouse and Jeffers Petroglyphs will once again be open for visitors beginning July 15. Birch Coulee Battlefield, Traverse des Sioux, and Marine Mill outdoor trails are already open to the public. 

With the health and safety of guests, staff and the community at the forefront of decision-making, MNHS feels it is safe to reopen Split Rock Lighthouse and Jeffers Petroglyphs because they offer predominately outdoor experiences. New protocols designed to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19 can be viewed on the health and safety procedures page of each website.

Split Rock Lighthouse will be open 7 days a week. Guests can purchase a timed entry ticket for $8 online or inside the visitor center. Other indoor spaces, including the lighthouse and keeper’s residence, will remain closed. A pop-up store will be set up outside so guests can shop for their favorite Split Rock Lighthouse items. For more information visit www.mnhs.org/splitrocklighthouse.

Jeffers Petroglyphs will be open Thursday through Sunday. Guests can purchase entry tickets for $8 online or inside the visitor center. For more information visit www.mnhs.org/jefferspetroglyphs.

MNHS is limiting the number of daily visitors at each site. Tickets can be purchased up to one month in advance online or through the box office at 651-259-3015. Tickets go on sale July 8.  

MNHS decisions about its remaining sites will be based on several factors: current state rules for reopening venues, requirements for cleaning, social distancing, and limiting capacity, as well as the financial cost of operating the site. In the meantime, these remaining sites will remain temporarily closed past the June 30 date that was announced in April.

MNHS staffing decisions
In order to support the reopening of sites and other initiatives, MNHS is recalling 64 staff, while making the difficult decision to extend furloughs for 139 staff and to lay off 176 staff, primarily those who work at MNHS historic sites and museums that remain closed. These actions will address strains on the MNHS operating budget as a result of ongoing closures. Critical staff will continue to ensure the security of historic sites and resources. 

MNHS is closely monitoring developments related to COVID-19. As MNHS plans scenarios for reopening, we are following recommendations from the Minnesota Department of Health and working to ensure the safety and welfare of our guests and workforce.

For more information, visit our website at mnhs.org/covid-19

About the Minnesota Historical Society
The Minnesota Historical Society is a nonprofit educational and cultural institution established in 1849. MNHS collects, preserves and tells the story of Minnesota’s past through museum exhibits, libraries and collections, historic sites, educational programs and publishing. Using the power of history to transform lives, MNHS preserves our past, shares our state’s stories and connects people with history. Visit us at mnhs.org