The Endless Summer

historical

The summer started last year with an idea, continued in January with research, and really got rolling in March with the purchase of my Dad's 1998 Chevy Malibu. The car has been my trusted aid and has also kept my deceased father close to my heart. I have now traveled over 30,000 miles, at first in search of and later to photograph and write about some of the remaining great family resorts in Minnesota.

The properties highlighted in this remarkable book, Resorts of Minnesota, run from the Iowa border to the Northwest Angle and from the Prairie Pothole Region of western Minnesota to the North Shore. It involved workdays that began at 3AM and ended at midnight. I can still remember sharing pizza with one resort owner 'til a half hour before midnight and then driving over three hours to get home. It has been a highly caffeinated summer.

I went into this project with some preconceived ideas of what resorts are and what resorting entails. In my mind a resort had about ten log-sided cabins with fourteen foot Lunds for rent on a lake somewhere in north central Minnesota. Since starting this project I have found resorts with no cabins, resorts in southern Minnesota, and even resorts without a lake in the county.

 

The images are stunning. I have been privileged to work with three of Minnesota's great photographers: Doug Ohman, Mark J Harlow, and Scott Pederson. They have been willing to put on many miles and experience long hours to capture the visual experience of what resorting is. There are photos from sunny days, windy days, and rainy days, because in Minnesota there is no such thing as bad weather, just improper attire.

 

Through the process of researching and interviewing I've been fortunate to experience some remarkable properties and make the acquaintance of wonderful people. Resort owners work hard day in and day out to keep alive one of the finest traditions in our state. Not long ago there were over 4,000 resorts in Minnesota: today there are around 900.

We will discuss the reasons for this in the book as we explore the history of resorting up through the current trends. The rich heritage of resorting will come alive through historical photographs and stories from the point of view of both the proprietors and the guests.

Resorts of Minnesota will be released in 2011.  It is my prayer that this project will bless you as much as it has blessed me.


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