Join us for lock and dam focus group tours

A photo showing the river almost emptied to the river bottom as part of a draw down by the Army Corps.

In 2020, thousands of people experienced a fleeting glimpse of what a freer-flowing Mississippi River could look like, thanks to a temporary "drawdown" of water levels at the Lower St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam. 

Update: Our summer 2022 lock and dam focus-group tours are full! We're no longer accepting applications. To keep up with the latest and hear about opportunities to get involved, check out our relevant blog updates or sign up using the form below.

In the coming months, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will begin a years-long study about what should happen to two locks and dams in the heart of Minneapolis-St. Paul.

They'll be considering some big questions: What should happen to the Lower St. Anthony Falls and Lock and Dam No. 1 (a.k.a. Ford lock and dam) now that they no longer serve their original purpose? Should we consider removing the dams to restore the Mississippi River gorge? (Learn more about what's going on with our metro dams.)

To educate community members about this issue and the big possibilities for our river, FMR and several partners are hosting a series of lock and dam tours this summer. Walking, boat cruise, bike and kayak tours are all available at no cost.

These upcoming tours also serve a special, second purpose. Participants will be asked to provide feedback to help FMR and our partners better communicate about this important but complex topic in the years to come.

Apply, or sign up for notices of future events

To let FMR know that you're interested in lock and dam events, submit the form below. You can view the schedule and apply for your preferred tour on a site maintained by our Macalester partners. We'll reach out when additional tours or related events are available!

For more information or to arrange a presentation for your group: contact Colleen O'Connor Toberman, Land Use & Planning Program director, at or 651.222.2193 x29.

Thank you project partners Macalester College (Dr. Roopali Phadke), Mississippi Park Connection, National Park Service, St. Paul Public Libraries (Highland Park), National Parks Conservation Association and American Rivers!

Upcoming Events

Wednesday, December 20, 2023 - 3:00pm to 11:00pm
Indeed Brewing Company, Minneapolis
January-February 2024
Multiple locations
Ole Olson prairie, Mississippi River, Minneapolis skyline

Celebrate 30 years of FMR!

For our 30th anniversary, our wish is for you to join us in restoring, protecting and enhancing the Mississippi River.