Birchdale is a small town in the far north of Minnesota, right on Minnesota State Highway 11.  It is just one mile south of the Rainy River and the Canadian border, about half way between Baudette and International Falls. Our community is home to year round great fishing, hunting, bird watching and many other outdoor activities. A few homes, an Area Community Building (operated by River Valley Development Association, RVDA), the Congregational Church, a U.S. Post Office, the County Garage/Birchdale Fire Hall and Nelson’s General Store make up the community located in the unincorporated Township of Sault in North West Koochiching County.  There are no municipal services offered, but local unpaid volunteers operate the Birchdale Fire Department and the Rainy River First Responders EMS services. Logging and farming are the main industries in the area. The General Store has been in business for over 90 years, and has been run by the same family for over 80 years. The Area Community Building is the center of most community events and the home of the Birchdale men’s and women’s slow pitch softball team. Birchdale is also home to the 100 year old United Congregational UCC church congregation and the bluegrass family band Sloughgrass.

Visitors can enjoy stopping by one of the local county parks, wayside rests or the Franz Jevne State Park, just to the east of Birchdale.  Camping is available at Franz Jevne State park with a state park sticker, and rough camping is available for free at Nelson Park at the County landing one mile north of Birchdale. The landing has a double boat launch, picnic tables at campsites, two picnic shelters, a playground and an outhouse. It also has a fish cleaning house and a dock. There is another County maintained boat ramp available to use for free just before the gate at the Franz Jevne State Park. A few miles west of Birchdale is the Hendrickson wayside rest, with a picnic area and steps down to the river that provide a great place for shore-fishing.

Although only 4 people actually live within Birchdale’s “city limits”, the surrounding residents, the people who grew up here and people with recreational properties all claim the little town and make it a busy place just about any time of year. Everyone with a connection to the area always turns out to help support the community’s events, fundraisers and gatherings. Community breakfasts on most Saturday mornings from 7-10:00 am at the Area Community Building are sponsored by different groups to raise money for their organizations or clubs.

Some of the annual community events in Birchdale include:

  • Spring church supper at Community Building in April
  • Memorial Day Service, program and lunch at the local cemetery
  • Monday night softball over the summer
  • 4th of July parade 11:00 am, plus World’s Greatest Potluck and kid’s games
  • Pioneer Days in Birchdale, 2nd Saturday after the 4th of July– machinery, music, crafters & animals
  • North American Sturgeon Championship, 3rd Saturday in August
  • Oktober Fest toward end of October, with chili contest, pumpkin carving, hayride and family fun
  • Fall church supper opening of deer hunting weekend
  • Deer Hunter’s Dance, 2nd weekend in deer season
  • Community Thanksgiving supper
  • Community Cookie-walk and Christmas Bazaar, 1st Saturday in December
  • Community New Year’s Eve potluck, games, dancing

Web-links to local websites:

Church information:

United Congregational UCC – Pastor John Tschudy· phone (218)-634-2841

Worship time: Sunday 11:45 am

Sunday school: 10:30 am

Birchdale Cemetery is located about one mile west of Birchdale on County road 4.

Business information

  • Nelson’s General Store, 10380 highway 11, Birchdale, MN 56629 (218) 634-2583
  • United States Post Office, 10424 Minnesota 11, Birchdale, MN ‎ 56629(218) 634-2103
  • County Garage 10423 Highway 11 , Birchdale, MN 56629 ‎(218) 634-2275
  • Sloughgrass band, 10390 highway 11, Birchdale, MN 56629 (218) 634-2800
  • Hasbargen Logging Inc, 1580 Town Road 117 Birchdale, MN 56629 (218) 634-1628
  • Benike Farms Inc., 1564 Town Rd 125, Birchdale MN 56629 (218) 634-2738.