'Rebirth: The Mississippi's National Park' (Video)

Produced for FMR by award-winning local filmmakers John Kaul and Tom Reiter with Twin Cities Public Television, and narrated by Minnesota Public Radio's Steve Seel, "Rebirth: The Mississippi's National Park" tells the little known story of the creation of the Mississippi River's first and only national park right here in the Twin Cities.

Our local national park is a "partnership park." The federal government owns 64 acres and must work with local residents and communities throughout the metro to protect our Mississippi River corridor.

This designation, initiated locally by self-proclaimed "river rat" Tom Kelley and championed at the federal level by Sen. David Durenberger and Rep. Bruce Vento, has supported successful efforts to revive our river. Today, it is thriving with fish and bald eagles, it is increasingly connected to (or reconnected to) our communities via parks and trails, and is seen as an asset rather than a convenient dumping ground.

As we face new challenges like agricultural pollution, development pressure and habitat degradation, this story also reminds us of the powerful, long-term impact community-based stewardship and advocacy can have on the natural wonders we love.

"Rebirth" received an ovation at its Guthrie premiere and many attendees at the Riverview Theater and REI National Park filmfest were surprised by the stunning scenery and dramatic backstory of this international treasure in our midst.

More ways to watch

• 'Rebirth" will air on TPT-MN Sundays, Aug. 28, 6:30 p.m. and Sept. 4, 12:30 a.m., 6:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. (channel guide)

• It's also available via the PBS app.

• If you're with a school or library and would like a hard copy of the DVD, please contact FMR Communications Manager sue rich, communications@fmr.org.

• If you'd like to receive an email when upcoming screenings are scheduled, just let us know.

FMR is proud to partner with Afton Films and Twin Cities Public Television and to be a part of the Mississippi National River & Recreation Area National Park Service Centennial celebration!;

Thank you funders!

Major funding provided by: 
The Bruce F. Vento Science Educator Scholarship Fund of The Saint Paul Foundation
The Katherine B. Andersen Fund of The Saint Paul Foundation
The Thomas J. Reiter & Sharon K. Miyamoto Charitable Trust

Additional funding provided by:
Ruth & John Huss
Mississippi National River and Recreation Area, National Park Service
Friends of Bruce Vento
National Parks Conservation Association
Susan Vento
Wendy Bennett & Ken Powell
Rick Pool / Custom Sound & Video
Bill & Judy Walter
Nancy Jacobson & Brad Bruette
Mississippi Park Connection