News Archive

Upcoming “At the Farm Gate” Market’s 2019

Sunday, March 17th, 2019

Help us make the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve region more sustainable and known for its unique local flavour.

To learn more about the At the Farm Gate Market, click here.

“At the Farm Gate” Spring Market

     Saturday, May 18, 2019 at the Onanole Recreation Centre in Onanole, Manitoba from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.


Click here for a printable poster.

To book your table or for more information, contact Valerie at or call 204-636-2085.






RMBR 2018 General Meetings

Wednesday, November 15th, 2017

Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve Meetings for 2018 

  • January 25, 2018 – Annual General Meeting
  • March 29, 2018 – General Meeting
  • May 31, 2018 – General Meeting
  • July 26, 2018 – General Meeting
  • September 27, 2018 – General Meeting
  • November 29, 2018 – General Meeting

Time: 7:00 p.m.

Location: Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve – Erickson Office. 61 2nd NE, Erickson MB

150 Reasons to Visit the RMBR in 2017

Wednesday, February 8th, 2017

150 Reasons to Visit Riding Mountain Biospehre Reserve in 2017 2



You are invited to celebrate Canada’s 150th Anniversary with the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve! Participate in a yearlong activity highlighting the people, places, cultural locations and festivals of the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve, which includes Riding Mountain National Park as its core protected area and the 12 municipalities that surround the Park. Each time you visit one of the highlighted “Reasons” take a “selfie” and submit it to the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve to be entered into our monthly prize draws. At the end of 2017, one lucky participant will win our “150 Reasons” grand prize!


How many Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve attractions can you visit in 2017?






FEBRUARY 10 – 12  Winter Adventure Weekend       Riding Mountain National Park 

Get out and enjoy the first Canada 150 Celebration in the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve! Spend a wintery weekend in the Biosphere Reserve’s core protected area Riding Mountain National Park. Activities includes a heritage hockey game on fabulous Clear Lake with teams outfitted in 1930’s style hockey jerseys. Bring your crazy carpets and sleds and take part in a Toboggan Party and Winter Olympics at Amphitheatre Hill. Rent a fat bike or strap on your snowshoes and set out on the multiuse trails in the town site of Wasagaming. When you’re ready, stop in for a Beaver Tail treat. Need something more substantial drop in at the Friends of Riding Mountain Learning Centre for Hot Dogs or the Lake House for a Sothern Style BBQ.


FEBRUARY 17 – 20  Canada 150 Celebration at Asessippi Ski Area                     Asessippi Ski Area           

Go winter! Go Canada! Join Asessippi Ski Area in celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday during February long weekend. Great activities are planned for anyone and everyone! Scavenger Hunt, Facepainting for kids, Maple Syrup roll ups, Beaver Bar on the deck, Kids Movies, and more.  Join them in creating an illuminated human Canadian Flag! Get a glow stick or sparkler and join everyone and stand in the marked out shape of the Canada flag. A drone will then take a picture of the flag! After that have a piece of Canada’s 150th Birthday cake!


FEBRUARY 18                          Bratsva Dinner & Dance                Dauphin                                

Bratstva Studios is a not-for-profit company based in Dauphin whose mission is to teach, and share folk tradition and artistic expression through stage performance of Ukrainian Folk Dance. The Bratsva Ukrainian Dance Studio proudly presents their 6th Annual Dinner & Dance at the 8th Avenue Hall in Dauphin, on Saturday February 18th! Cocktails at 5:30, dinner at 6:30, with performance to follow! The evening will also feature a fun and lively dance, with the Crawdaddy’s!


FEBRUARY 18      Asessippi Homecoming Weekend             Asessippi Provincial Park                            

So many great ways to Celebrate! Lots of fun for the whole family including fireworks and a Snowboarding Rails Wars competition.


FEBRUARY 18-19            Louis Riel Weekend                 Riding Mountain National Park 

Join Friends as we celebrate the Louis Riel long weekend at the Friends of RMNP Learning Centre! Great activities for the whole family. Try your hand at bannock roasting or go for a pony ride for a real “winter travel” experience. Guided snowshoeing and survive outside programs will help you love the great outdoors in winter.

Louis Riel Weekend

FEBRUARY 17-20                        Rossburn’s Louis Riel  Snow Weekend                       Rossburn

Celebrate Louis Riel Weekend in Rossburn with hockey games, cribbage tournament, public skating, BBQ, Sleigh Rides and much more.

For more information click here


FEBRUARY 20                    Neepawa Winter Wonderland Festival                   Neepawa                                         

Join us at The Flats on Monday, February 20, 2017 – Louis Riel Day from Noon to 3:00 pm for a variety of activities! Fun for the whole family!  Skate with the Neepawa Natives, Snow Angel Competition, Face Painting, Craft Workshop, Motion Zone, Toddle Obstacle Course, Cross Country Skiing Lessons, Sleigh Rides!  Free Hot Chocolate, Hot Dogs & Cotton Candy!


FEBRUARY 20                          Louis Riel Day at Fort Dauphin                   Dauphin

Celebrate Louis Riel Day with the folks at Fort Dauphin Museum. Learn about our regions Heritage, History & Culture


FEBRUARY 25                          Lake of the Prairie’s Ice Fishing Derby     Dauphin                                                          

Love Winter, Love to Fish – Get out and put a line in or just go for a look and get hooked on Ice Fishing!

Keep Checking Back to See March’s Highlighted Reasons to Visit Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve


150 Reasons to Visit the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve in 2017
Selfie Contest Rules

Contest Period:

  • The 150 Reasons to Visit the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve monthly Selfie Contests (the “150 Reasons Selfie Contest”) will begin at 12:00 am Central Standard Time (CST) on the first day of each month and will end at 11:59 pm Central Standard Time (CST) on the last day of each month.
  • All entries must be received before the 11:59 pm CST deadline on the last day of each month to be eligible to win.
  • The 150 Reasons to Visit the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve Grand Prize Selfie Contest (the “150 Reasons Selfie Contest”) will begin at 12:00 am Central Standard Time (CST) on January 1st, 2017 and will end at 11:59 pm Central Standard Time (CST) on December 31st, 2017.
  • All entries must be received before 11:59 pm CST on December 31st, 2017 to be eligible to win.


  • “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest is open to everyone, including professional photographers
  • Everyone who enters the “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest must “Like” the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve on Facebook                   

How to enter: 

  • By email:
  • On Facebook (@RMBiosphere) – please include #rmbr150 in your post
  • Contestants may enter only one (1) “Selfie” per festival or event
  • Contestants may enter up to one (1) “Selfie” per month for each year-round cultural attraction or geographic feature visited
  • Images may be taken using any electronic device
  • Every photo submitted must be a “true Selfie” and prominently feature the person submitting the photograph
  • In addition to highlighting the person submitting the photo, each submission must also clearly highlight the festival, event, cultural attraction, geographic feature or activity
  • Photos must be taken within the boundaries of the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve
  • Photo files must be a minimum of 300 dpi, or 500 KB
  • With each submission, include: Contestant’s name and identify whre the “Selfie” was taken.

Winner Selection and Notification

  • Winners will be announced within 48 hours after the close of each monthly “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest
  • Winners will be notified by email or Facebook, depending on how the submission was entered, and will be posted on the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve’s website and Facebook page
  • Winners will be selected from all of the submissions received during the previous month
  • Each monthly winner will also be eligible to win the year end grand prize, which will be drawn on January 1st, 2018.

Use of Submissions:

  • By submitting your photo or image you are authorizing the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve to use your photo in any and all promotional material they see fit.
  • All photos and images submitted become the property of Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve which shall then have the right at any time to publicly display, publish or otherwise use any photo or image. This includes but is not limited to: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and other social media platforms, email marketing, website, print and promotional material and any other marketing material they so choose to showcase and use the winning photos.
  • Persons submitting entries are responsible to ensure the consent of any person shown in the photo or image.


  • We will use your personal contact information to administer the “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest, including contacting, announcing and promoting prizewinners.
  • The “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest is run in compliance with Canadian Privacy Laws.


  • The Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest committee, in their sole discretion, may prohibit any person from entering the Contest whom they believe is abusing the rules.
  • Such abuse includes entering false information and submitting more times than is permitted under the “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest rules.
Indemnity: By participating in the “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest, you agree to defend, indemnify and hold harmless the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve, “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest partners and sponsors and each of their officers, directors, employees, advisors, assignees, agents, licensees, representatives, advertising, media buyers and promotional agencies from any and all damages, injuries, claims, causes of action, or losses of any kind (including but not limited to lawyers’ fees) arising out of or relating to your participation in the “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest; your receipt or use of any prize; your violation of any term of these “150 Reasons” Selfie Contest rules; your violation of any third party right, including without limitation any copyright, property, or privacy right; or any claim that your submission caused any type of damage to a third party.

150 Reasons Selfie Contest Rules

Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve Contributes to Local Economy

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

Funding cuts affect ability to deliver programs

Erickson, Manitoba, February 5, 2014 – Biosphere reserves have the capacity to work with municipalities to build prosperous, vibrant and sustainable communities. They provide access to the United Nations’ vast research and project management resources. Imagine being able to tap into the knowledge base and capacity-building power of 621 biosphere reserves around the world, 16 of which are located in Canada. That is the opportunity that the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve (RMBR) provides to the 15-member municipalities that surround Riding Mountain National Park.

“Biosphere reserves play a crucial role in generating knowledge about how natural systems work and about how to maintain resilient ecosystems which contribute enormously valuable ecological services,” explained Valerie Pankratz, RMBR executive director. “At the same time these ecosystems can be used in sustainable ways to create income, employment and wealth.”

Since receiving biosphere designation from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 1986, RMBR has been involved in numerous projects that cross municipal boundaries to deal with complex issues like the Bovine Tuberculosis (TB). Since 2003, RMBR has facilitated the TB Stakeholders Advisory Committee (TB SAC) which has been an important link between cattle producers, hunters and outfitters, and the government agencies working to eradicate Bovine TB from the Riding Mountain region.

Other initiatives include education programs in water stewardship like “Living by the Water’s Edge,” a how-to manual for home and cottage owners living along waterways and lakeshores. RMBR has also created and curates the Native Species Garden at their Erickson office which provides information about planting and preserving native species of plants and trees. It also helps raise awareness about efforts to halt the spread of invasive species.

Growing the local economy

The “At the Farm Gate” program hosts three markets per year in communities around the park where producers and artisans have access to new customers and an ever growing legion of loyal repeat clients. Shopping locally has multiple benefits: money spent on these products stays in the regional economy; the craftspeople and farmers access new markets and revenue; and it provides a boost to the area’s tourism sector.

Caching Riding Mountain is another sustainable tourism initiative piloted by RMBR. This annual GPS adventure quest sends participants on a 24-hour tour of the biosphere. Working with local partners, RMBR organizes stops at a variety of local attractions that visitors might not normally discover on their own, thus promoting the cultural resources and natural beauty of the area.

Scientific research is another component of the biosphere’s mandate. RMBR has helped facilitate numerous research projects including an elk movement study, as well as the introduction of innovative beaver removal techniques. They are also participating in projects looking at the effects of climate change, and invasive species.

Looking to the future

Today however RMBR finds itself at a crossroads. After nearly three decades, RMBR’s future is being threatened by a funding shortfall. The post-recession economic reality has meant that environmental non-governmental organizations (ENGOs) are having to reinvent themselves in order to remain vital and effective.

Since Environment Canada’s funding agreement to biosphere reserves was cut in 2012, RMBR has been looking for alternative revenue sources.

A partial solution has been found through a contribution agreement with Parks Canada. They have agreed to pay some of the cost of a fund development plan whose goal is to make the Biosphere Reserve self-sufficient. This study and plan were well underway in 2012, but had to be put on hold after the federal budget cuts.

Reviving the fund development plan has injected fresh energy into RMBR. With its focus on maintaining biodiversity, healthy sustainable ecosystems, and vital sustainable communities, board members are eager to see that the untapped potential of this organization get used to help grow the economy and preserve local culture.

Preserving local history

“RMBR could coordinate a number of different projects like documenting oral histories in order to preserve the region’s stories of settlement, triumphs and tragedies, plagues, and disasters,” said board member Don Huisman. “Every municipality has a few sites and artifacts of local significance that could be catalogued, mapped and made known to a larger audience.”

Having this information available throughout the biosphere would be of interest to local residents and ex-pats originally from the area who have moved away. Knowing their local history helps bring communities together.

“Every municipality has a few interesting cultural heritage pieces,” explains Huisman who is also a councillor for the Town of Erickson, “The biosphere can be a link for all of these. For example, the last known building from the Whitewater POW camp is now a garage near Strathclair. The house of murdered park warden Lawrence Lees is now in Rossburn. Panels of wood made at Kippan’s Mill during the Depression exist all around the park. We can share that kind of information with the people who live here now, with those who have moved away, and with newcomers. Everyone has a piece of this history but if we put it all together we build a wonderful mosaic of our history and culture.”

Regional coordination during amalgamation

“The Biosphere Reserve has a lot to offer municipalities in the way of facilitation skills,” explains Ray Frey, chairman of RMBR. “RMBR can assist where there are contentious issues, especially cross-boundary, or as a result of amalgamation between municipal partners. Having an impartial third party chair a meeting helps keep the focus on needs and issues rather than emotions and history.”

Frey also noted that biosphere reserves are mandated to focus on sustainable development, environmental sciences, and cultural preservation. UNESCO provides support to biospheres for these activities through knowledge sharing and access to world experts in their fields. Many of these resources are out of reach for rural municipalities of 1000 or fewer residents, but the combined population of the region is 20,000 people, so sharing these assets at the biosphere level makes it more feasible.

European model

In Europe, public investment in biosphere reserves is significantly higher than in Canada. Governments there acknowledge the value of being in a biosphere reserve and invest on average $10 per person per year into theirs. In return, they make full use of their biosphere reserves’ capacity for conservation, development, communication, and logistical coordination. They have become Europe’s “laboratories of ideas” on questions of sustainable growth.

In the near future, RMBR board members will be asking member municipalities to consider supporting the organization through a contribution based on roll numbers.

“We could really help municipalities to grow. An investment in RMBR will pay dividends many times over,” explains Frey. “This resource has not been utilized to its fullest potential in the past. We invite the RMs to ask for assistance with their highest priority issues. We want them to be aware of what we can do for them.”

This is a critical time for RMBR. The activities mandated in their charter must be carried out in order to retain biosphere reserve status. Unfortunately, if RMBR were to lose its status, it will not get it back. Founders, board members and supporters of RMBR will be encouraging municipal leaders to support the organization and more importantly, to make use of its full potential.

Using the European experience as a blueprint, Pankratz acknowledges that their goals are big, but achievable.

“We would like RMBR to become known as an area dedicated to focusing on developing models for global, national and local cultural, biological ecosystem sustainability.”

For more information about RMBR activities in your area, visit or call 204-636-2085.

Celebrate World Snow Day!

Friday, January 4th, 2013

Get Outside and Play on World Snow Day!

Celebrate all things snow on January 20, 2013.

The RMBR is participating in World Snow Day by asking people who live and play in Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve to do something “Snowy” on January 20, 2013!

Come join us and Friends of Riding Mountain National Park to Fly your Kite (regular and traction) on beautiful Clear Lake, located in our core protected area Riding Mountain National Park, January 20, 2013 from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm and you will be entered to Win a great Snow Day Kite!

If you can’t make it out to Clear Lake, go out in the snow and fly your kite on January 20, 2013 and send us your best photo or short video of all the fun you’re having in Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve to be entered to Win a great Snow Day Kite!

To enter, email your photo or short video along with where your photo or video was taken in Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve and your name and address to .

Check out the Starbucks video of folks flying these great kites!


RMBR General Meeting

Thursday, January 3rd, 2013

Next General Meeting Date: Thursday, September 25th, 2014

Time: 7:00 pm

Location: Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve  – Erickson Office. 61 2nd NE, Erickson MB

Native Species Garden Booklets

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

Are you interested in learning more about gardening with Native Species in the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve? We have just added two new Native Species Garden booklets to our website! Intended as a guide for the gardens planted at our Erickson office, these booklets include a variety of plant species native to the area.

The adult booklet includes detailed information and pictures of each of the plant species as well as some recipes for native species. For kids, we have added another booklet that provides basic information, pictures, a colouring page, a maze, and some fun facts!

To download your copy or to learn more about the RMBR Native Species Garden, click here.

Native Species Garden Online

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

The Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve has just launched a new page for our Native Species Garden! Three gardens were planted in the Summer of 2011 with more planned for the near future. The diverse and beautiful species planted in these gardens are all native to the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve and we hope that you will enjoy them as much as we do!

For more information, please visit the Native Species Garden page by clicking here.

2011 Photo Contest Results

Wednesday, December 28th, 2011

We’ve just posted all of our entries to the 2011 Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve Photo Contest. Thank you to all those who submitted their pictures, they were great!

Click here to view the pictures.

For more information on the 2012 Photo Contest, please click here.

Update on Bovine Tb Meeting

Thursday, December 1st, 2011

Update on Bovine Tb in the Riding Mountain National Park Region

1:30pm to 3:30pm

Monday, December 5, 2011

McCreary Legion Hall

Presentations by Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Iniativies (MAFRI), Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), Manitoba Conservation and Parks Canada

Everyone is welcome to come gather information and ask questions.

More more information, call Valerie at (204) 636-2085