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    Resorts of the Northwoods
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    Resorts of the Northwoods

    September 13, 2019

    Scott: Resorts Of The
    Northwoods is made possible by
    the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund,
    from money by the vote of the people. Minnesota resorts are unique.
    Each offers its own special
    qualities, atmosphere, and even culture. There’s
    always been a tie for them to be here, if they come to the
    resort. Either Uncle Charlie owned a cabin on the lake or
    Aunt Mabel lived in Pequot. But there always seems to be
    some kind of family tie to the area that draws the people to begin with.« Scott:
    Each resort is as distinct from the next as
    the friendly, fun-loving people who own and operate
    them» We look at this whole land, not only
    our beautiful piece of property here, as
    sacred. « Scott: Resorting, as a
    Minnesota industry has evolved from early
    fire pit fishing camps to rustic cabins
    of the mid-twentieth century, to a vast range of
    amenities and activities available today.
    Some luxurious, the others, most basic» I tell
    my staff, “Your only job is to see if people are enjoying
    themselves and to ask them ‘How are things
    going?’ during their visit.”« Scott: For
    generations of Americans, a summer vacation
    spent on the shores of a cool northern Minnesota lake
    has been an eagerly awaited respite from the rigors
    of their livelihood» We have I think…believe five
    generations that have been
    coming here for years and years and
    they come from all over the country. They meet one
    another here at the same time. « Scott: The resort industry began before the invention of
    air conditioning. as a way for people of the
    plains to leave their growing
    crops during the hottest weeks and
    recoup in a cool lake breeze through pines» Our
    cabins were considered ultra-modern;
    today they would be un-rentable
    because most of them did not have
    running water and ah, very primitive, very primitive.« Scott: The
    industry has experienced both ups and downs, growth and
    decline, as economic factors and people’s
    recreational whims have changed over the decades» Forties and
    fifties is really the big heyday of resorts in ah, the Upper Midwest up here. So,
    that’s a typical thing for resorts in Minnesota. We
    don’t really know exactly how many resorts were around
    during that day and age. I’ve been doing a little bit of
    research on that. We do know that there were about
    2,500 resorts in the state of Minnesota around 1970 and we know in this day, 2015, there
    are just a little over 800 now, in the
    state of Minnesota. « Scott: One thing remains the
    same, resorts continue to provide visitors
    the best Minnesota has to offer. Come along with Lakeland Public Television, as we tour a small
    sampling but vast variety of Resorts Of
    The Northwoods. We begin our tour at Pimushe
    Resort located deep in the wilderness
    east of Bemidji, Minnesota. Pimushe, a classic, secluded
    resort with cabins beautifully maintained
    along an isolated lake is owned and operated by Ed and
    Joann Fussy. I’m Ed Fussy, and we’re at
    Pimushe Resort near Bemidji, Minnesota and got into the resort business in
    1994. I was a billing contractor
    prior to that and ah, decided to do something
    different and get ah…not have as many employees« chuckles» and still enjoy dealing with people and
    enjoy the outdoors. Well the resort was started in 1946 right after the war and
    the original people that started it was Al
    and Lori Arndt. They ran it for, I want to say,
    about 30 years. And then they sold it to ah,
    Nick and Sally Neckolaishen and they had it
    three years. The next owners were Tom and Bonnie Schwartzlander who had
    it for 15 years and we bought this
    resort in 1994. So we’re the fourth
    owners. We’ll start with our beach area
    which is a big draw for families and even if
    some of them don’t have a family, they still like
    it. Every year we try to add a new water toy. This year, our new addition is
    the big free-fall aqua-glide slide. It’s been a big hit. It
    definitely has looks bigger once you get out
    there so our guests say. I don’t know because I don’t swim and I
    haven’t been on it yet so « water splashes» Well we accumulated them over
    years and every year add something and as
    some of them wear out some go away but we’ve added to
    it and made it fun for the kids. In today’s
    electronic world you gotta have something other
    that they can come and enjoy other than sit on their
    electronics so. « laughing, water splashing» And
    this year we also added some bicycles for our
    guests to use. which has been a big hit with
    some of them and built a carpet ball this
    spring That’s been a real big hit as
    well as we also have ladder golf and the bean bag
    toss. We also have the volleyball,
    basketball court for those that want to be real
    ambitious on vacation. And here we have our cabin 4, which is one of our
    bigger units. It will sleep up to 21 people.
    It’s a four bedroom cabin and that
    cabin we built around, I think it was
    2000. Ed did up the plans, he sawed
    all the lumber for the cabins, made all
    the furniture and then I have made all the
    quilts for the beds. Our cabins are a big
    attraction to the people. We basically built
    them all from scratch, sawed the logs, milled the
    lumber, made the furniture, Joann made all the
    quilts and stuff for the bedding, so people really
    appreciate that, the unique portion of all the cabins, how
    unique they are. Our dock system, Ed kind of
    designed those. That took a little trial
    and error to get them just what he wanted. They’re a
    floating system that we pull into the bay each fall and
    then pull out again in the spring. Two cabins share one
    dock so there’s like four spaces on each side so we
    always have ample dock space for boats and
    stuff for the guests if they bring their own or if
    they want to rent one of our deluxe boats or one of our
    three pontoons that we have. Our resort is a little
    more set off the beaten path. One of the
    things we hear from people how peaceful it is here.
    It’s a very undeveloped lake. We have about 3,000 feet of
    lakeshore. The bulk of that lakeshore
    we’ve kept kind of in the natural state. A few
    years ago we purchased some wild flower
    seeds from the DNR that we put along this part.
    Now we’ve kinda thinned them out a little bit
    and I threw in some perennials this year because it had gotten
    so tall that our guests couldn’t see over them.
    But we still basically kept it all
    natural with a little splash of some
    perennial flowers in there which attract
    butterflies is what we’re
    trying to do. We planted some milk weed seeds
    this spring with the hopes of kind of
    increasing the milk weed along the lakeshore. But yet you know, even though
    we have an area for our beach we still
    feel it’s important to keep the natural look of the
    lakeshore. People like the lawn groomed
    but they like to be able to see the beauty of the natural
    flowers that the environment provides.
    The only part that we have basically
    messed with is our beach area otherwise the
    rest of it is all natural with the exception of my
    perennials but…« laughs» At each one of our cabins we have a
    hummingbird feeder that I try to keep filled
    depending upon the season or the time. Sometimes the
    birds are eating us out of house and home almost but
    the guests really like that cause for some they don’t
    get that opportunity to see um, hummingbird feeders. Each cabin comes with its own fire pit which gets used quite a bit throughout the
    summer This cabin we purchased after we
    bought the resort. The owner of this
    one we had always told him when he
    got ready to sell that we’d be interested in buying it
    since our yards connected. Um, and this one used to be a lake home
    during the summer months and then they
    went to Missouri during the winter. This one’s a
    three bedroom. It’s nice and private for those that
    still want to be on the resort but want to have
    some privacy. If they don’t mind the little
    bit of a hill, most of them like, like I said the
    privacy of it all. Well we’re kinda off the beaten
    path. We’re 20 minutes from
    Bemidji which makes everyone feel like
    they’re away from all the busy rat race
    and life and yet they’re only 20
    minutes from all the amenities that we’re
    spoiled with in Bemidji. Being a college town
    has everything so the antiquing and gift shops and all of that stuff so they’re
    not far away from it for those that don’t want to leave it and
    the ones that want to stay isolated and outta touch,
    they can do that. « Scott: From the natural
    wilderness of Pimushe we continue our resort tour
    south to the Brainerd Lakes area at Cragun’s Resort.
    Owned and operated by Dutch and Irma
    Cragun, this is one of
    Minnesota’s largest resorts. In the summer
    of 2015, shortly before filming of this
    documentary many homes and businesses in
    the Brainerd area were struck
    by a derecho, a violent thunderstorm
    with powerful straight line winds»
    « Reporter: The Brainerd Lakes
    Area is still reeling from last night’s
    powerful storm. Besides trees falling down,
    power lines took a hit too»« Scott: The storm damage
    was being repaired as we filmed at Cragun’s. Dutch and Irma’s
    resilience was evident» Well I’m Dutch Cragun and we’re at Cragun’s Resort in gorgeous
    East Gull Lake. And I’m Irma Cragun and I’m joining my husband, Merrill
    Cragun on the shores of East Gull Lake. Well going back a little bit of
    history, my father, in college, he had a good friend at the University
    of Minnesota in the Minnesota Daily, and they were
    both advertising pals. So Jack Madden, his pal, had an interest in the Pine Beach Golf Course up
    here and his Uncle Tom was the owner. Jack Madden, as he now owned the golf course, if he’d pay for it, enticed my
    father to buy some property which we
    now have as Cragun’s but only seven acres and build some cabins to play
    golf on his course. And ah, that was done by various means,
    where eight different families got
    eight different blue prints. There were no big construction
    companies around here in those days and so the eight
    families made their own cabins and they were completed in 1940 and we opened in 1941. So, next year is our 75th anniversary. My name is Nancy
    Krasean, I’m the director of marketing for Cragun’s
    Resorts. This was the original
    building that was the first building
    that Cragun’s built when they moved up here in
    1940. Dutch’s father, Merrill Cragun, his
    mother, Louise, they built this first building to
    accommodate their first guests. 1941 my dad signed the mortgage at the Citizens State
    Bank in Brainerd on December 6th. And guess what happened on
    December 7th? The Japanese bombed Pearl
    Harbor. So, that was my early career. I was eight years old and my
    dad said my job now is to run the worms, minnows, and frogs bait department and that I did, through the war. The wartime
    was a real challenge because ah, there was a fear that people wouldn’t take
    a vacation at all. And gas was rationing, so was ah, tires and with a B-Card “B” as in boy, you could make up to Brainerd and back
    with ah, the ration for that week. So, we looked out further north
    from Nisswa on up to Bemidji was beyond that B-Card. Well um, everything was rationed,
    including gasoline. And so if you had a B-Card, that was a little bit
    more than the A-Card and the B-Card
    meant about 10 gallons of gas a week. So, if you were able to save up a little bit, you could leave
    the “Sin Twities”« cymbals
    crash» accept the pun, take the car up and coast down hill« chuckles» and,
    by the way, the only two routes were around
    Lake Mille Lacs or up through Little Falls. And so if you got here, I’d
    be…you spend about five gallons of gas, keep low speed,
    by the way they had the speed limit down
    to 40 so you wouldn’t be using a lot of gas and you had
    enough to get to Brainerd, maybe to Nisswa, the North end of Gull Lake but
    then beyond that even up to Breezy Point and
    further north Bemidji, they were…it was out
    of range. It was hard for them to make it
    there and back on that B-Card and so they really hurt. People in the northern part of
    the state resorts really hurt and my dad having organized the
    Paul Bunyan Playground Association,
    then organized the Minnesota Resort
    Association. Ah, with the resorts that
    already had joined and there were 23 of them and
    they took out an Ad in the Minneapolis paper
    which said “We’re still running!” Wasn’t very big but
    it was the best they could do. Well here in
    Pine Beach area there was a hotel that was
    built, there was the golf course,
    Ruttger’s was…had a large property of 32 cabins, little old Cragun’s had eight cabins. Ah, down the way was Island View Lodge which
    had 18 cabins and a paved road! And all of us were able to house about 250 people and we had one party line phone. ‘Crank, crank!’ Ours was two
    long and two shorts. And so everybody who
    came during the war wanted that
    party line phone to find out what’s going on and you know
    they were taking turns “Get off the phone
    so I can make a call!” « Scott: With years of Dutch and
    Irma’s work developing Cragun’s the resort has grown as large
    as a small town. Nancy uses a golf cart to
    conduct our tour» So these cabins were some of the first
    structures they built out of the side of the main
    resort building. So these little cabins and you can see
    the wood burning fireplaces were a very important part of a
    lot of the early structures because they always wanted to
    go year round, open all four seasons and we
    are open all four seasons, have been from the beginning.
    Well we had eight cabins through the war and they were
    all housekeeping and right after the war then Jack Madden, my dad’s pal, had
    the golf course and decided to go
    into the resort business. And so he
    opened what’s called an “American Plan Resort” where
    you have all your meals served, all three. And so he quickly built a larger resort well then us as a matter of
    fact. And so my dad also took courage from that, so
    he started serving meals, added
    four more cabins. I joined the Army after college, went to Europe, stayed over
    there a year and my dad offered the resort
    to me to buy or he’s gonna sell. And it was some tough decisions to make because I was in Berlin
    after the war and I was going to school there and I had the G.I. Bill and he called me up and said
    “How would you like to run a 12 cabin resort?” I said “Are you making any money from
    that 12 cabin resort? Are you earning a living?” He said “No
    that’s why I’m selling it. Do you want to run it?”
    « chuckles» I said “Well I’m
    thinking dad, I’m thinking, just a minute.”
    So finally I came back and for two or three years I tried to build it up a little
    bit, had another cabin, a couple, three
    cabins more. But then one winter I had to be working somewhere in winters to
    survive, I was in San Francisco and I
    went to a dance hall, the Avalon Ballroom, and there was a cute little cookie from Canada, a nurse, and I asked her for a
    dance. « That part’s true» And that’s
    the story of Cragun’s. « chuckles» Now we’re the
    largest resort in Minnesota, 305 rooms. And otherwise except for her there’d still be 15 cabins. In a nutshell, that’s the
    story. He makes it sound like I was the carpenter.
    « laughing» I did help them, but I wasn’t in
    charge. This is where Dutch and Irma
    lived. They’ve lived on property for 50 years and have last couple of years
    now they live off property, this house kinda took
    a hit from the most recent storms so we’re just in the
    process of getting it back
    together again. And it’ll be a rental unit now
    but they lived on property so they were very
    handy for any time there was a problem at
    the resort or they somebody needed something.
    Probably too handy« chuckles» it certainly became their life,
    24 hours a day, seven days a week but they enjoyed
    it. That was the life they made for themselves. I
    didn’t think about “Well someday we’re gonna be bigger.”
    You just did it! And so in the winters it would
    be the time to add on, paint, then we built the lodge and
    changed it around and well I was painting and sewing
    curtains and doing all the things that
    the wives had to do. We are heading down the beach
    road. We’re going to the marina area of the
    resort. « Scott: What a beautiful
    lake» It is a lovely lake. We’re
    coming up on the north beach area. This is where we do weddings.
    Everybody wants to have an outdoor wedding by the lake
    so surprisingly this year other
    than our storm weekend um, the weather cooperated for
    our weddings and I don’t think they had to
    bring any of them inside. So, we always have a bad
    weather backup just in case. But um, this is where the
    weddings are held under the willow trees. So, it’s a, it’s a lovely
    facility on the lake. « excited whooing» « excited whooing» I give a litany every week. We welcome guests and when I do I tell them
    “We’re having music, we’re gonna have a fishing
    clinic, we’re gonna be having bingo at 8 o’clock, we’re gonna have a bonfire
    right after that we’re gonna roast marshmallows
    and that’s just sunday. Now look at the plan
    for…we got for ya to do Monday.” Our success I
    think is that there’s so much to do that they can’t get it all done
    in a couple days, they gotta
    stay longer and come back. So we’re
    coming up on the marina area and this is where our guests
    come to rent pontoon boats, work with fishing
    guides, speed boats, paddle boats, the hydro bikes. The canoes and row boats are
    free for our guests to use. On a busy summer weekend you’ll see most
    of these pontoons out and about on Gull Lake fishing or just
    having fun in the sun In the winter time this whole
    area is a skating rink. So, we have
    a huge lighted skating rink that gets very well used. Our
    recreation program has snow bowling and different
    events that take place on the ice and
    then we have hockey and broom ball and that’s out
    there if they want to play that. Cross country skiing,
    snowshoeing. Um, all of that is…surprising
    the number of people that want to be out and
    playing and having fun in the
    snow. As much as people that want to
    be out here in the summer time. But those first years we didn’t
    have the money to finish the deck or the area
    below it, so we said we got the world’s
    largest snowmobile garage. It was just a big empty
    space. But that was a big turning
    point in our decision to ah make a
    professional year round resort. And to have
    people who were committed to serving year round. Instead of just
    summer students who would be here and go. These are
    folks that had really made our place,
    I think, a fun spot for families. « water splashing» « Scott: From the highly
    developed Cragun’s we head back up north to the Big Winnie
    RV Park and Campground. A resort in the heart of the
    Leech Lake Nation. We meet with Arnold
    Dahl-Wooley, a 5th generation owner/operator with knowledge
    of an amazing history of his resort and the
    area» Well, my name is Arnold
    Dahl-Wooley, I am the 5th
    generation to own the Big Winnie Store RV Park
    and Campground located in Bena,
    Minnesota. The history of this resort and
    campground kind of stems back
    from 1932. My great-great
    grandfather, Ernest Flemming, had this place
    built, developed and this became a trading post and
    also a tourist attraction for many people from all the
    different areas. In the history
    terms of the Big Winnie Store RV Park
    and Campground this is located in the center
    of Leech Lake Indian Reservation and this was the beacon store
    and resort in the area. There were 30-some cabins that
    used to surround the area and a lot of people came here
    for living purposes working purposes and also
    employment. Ernest Flemming actually, his first wife was a full native woman by the name
    of Julia. And that would be my
    great-great grand…or great-great grandmother. And
    they’re the ones who had this
    built, developed, and they wanted to
    make sure it was near the
    railroad. Cause back in the 30’s the
    railroad meant business. That’s where all the shipments
    it would come in on people were transported on and
    went to their daily lives and homes and work
    and etcetera. And lakeshore actually wasn’t
    very popular land back in the day. So, in 1932 we
    did own the lakeshore, but that was later
    on sold because it was considered not profitable back
    in 1932. Which vice versa, you would
    want it to be on lakeshore today. But we are
    close to the lake of Lake
    Winnibigoshish which is one of the larger
    fishing lakes in the state of
    Minnesota. Throughout history after Ernest
    Flemming it passed down to his daughter then his adopted daughter which
    was Katherine Kagly. And I knew her as mum. And
    right now I currently live in her house. Cause their house
    was built on the grounds on the
    property which is just a little ways
    away from the resort itself. And ah, she was a wonderful
    woman. She lived to be 94. And ah, but then the resort was
    passed down to her daughter, which was Marguerite. And Margurite met my
    grandfather, Arnold Dahl whom I’m named after. And he
    was from North Dakota. And so, it was sold outside the
    family actually for a short period of time and
    that’s when it took a nose dive a little bit. And that was, it
    was pretty well documented that
    a resort was in disrepair for a period
    of time. And that’s when my father got
    it. And so he started restoring
    the building and restoring, ah,
    certain areas of the land itself. And then, it came down to me. My great-great
    grandfather, Ernest Flemming, the one who
    had this place built and there’s an interview that he had done
    years ago and I got to read it. And it talked about
    him living in the area here and also about how he
    worked with the Native American people for
    employment cause he used to get pelts, ah, furs and do an
    exchange. Also give them employment to
    people of different cultures and races and so forth. And I kind of see things emanating
    today even of what it used to be back
    then, that’s what’s kind of
    happening today even. And so things kind
    of made full circle on that issue. And then, mum that would be Katherine Kagly
    which was my great grandmother, who’s home I live
    in right now. There’s a great picture of her in the
    20’s wearing her native regalia
    standing next to a tree. And that’s one
    of my favorite pictures of her cause she’s smiling and she was
    very happy. And I only knew her
    as an elderly woman. But to see
    her in her youth and knowing that she used to run
    around in this place and play and it kind of connects me with
    the history of the place here
    still because I knew her personally
    and to see her in her youth, it was kind of a
    full circle thing for me and my memory and living
    her in her home. We do have other pictures inside
    of the store and it shows the
    resort what it used to be back in the
    30’s, 40’s and 50’s. And there used to be a lot of
    cabins here, a lot but a
    tornado had come through and it wiped
    out most of the cabins. And so that was devastating
    during that time period. Just for the loss of the
    structural buildings. And so today you know, we had restored
    the original two which I was very happy to save
    and salvage those and bring them
    back to their original glory. To go forward today on a
    different route which was we put an RV park in and
    expanded some of the rustic camping and that was for needs
    of today. And as you can see, a lot of
    our customers personalize their
    own spot. They always make, ah, bring in
    their own stuff and decks and so forth and flowers
    to make another home away from home. The land that
    was sold by my great- great grandfather, Ernest
    Flemming, was sold for ah to the CCC Camp. And that was a
    German prisoner of war camp. And a lot of the
    local people in the town worked over there.
    So we have pictures inside that show the barbers getting
    their hair cut. The prisoners here were treated very well.
    They were fed very well, they
    were taken care of very well and a lot of
    them came over to work on the
    grounds of this resort itself. And the
    ruins are still there. And we’ve actually
    had a few people that were very elderly come back to this area
    to visit. And right now we’re just right
    back down to the ruins of it.
    Cause it’s a part of the history and
    it’s part of…part of Bena. This camp was here and the
    employment that offered and this resort offered and
    then the local townspeople that are still alive, they’re
    descendants of..of the people
    that used to be a part of that history.
    One of the biggest draws for the Big Winnie Store RV
    Park and Campground is the historical landmark
    itself, is this…the appearance of the
    store, the red white and blue. It…when you drive by you
    can’t miss it, it’s a very
    unique building. And another draw that
    would be out here is we’re surrounded by five
    different lakes. So if you’re
    hunter and fisherman, you can go out
    and fish all day if… you can try out different
    lakes. The area is beautiful. We’re on the center of the
    reservation so there’s all different kinds of experiences
    you can have. You can go to
    powwows, meet the…have the Native
    American experience and culture and find out what it is to be
    Native American today. And find out that there really
    isn’t a lot of differences in between all of us. Some other
    of the unique aspects of this
    area is we’re on green routes. And
    so we have people that are
    biking from all over the United States. And
    so we’re in the center of all of that. And so this is one
    of their major stops. So we’ll meet people that are
    coming from Seattle traveling
    to New York. And they’ll come here
    specifically because of the
    historical aspect of this place. The historical
    building and the area itself. And also
    it’’s right smack dab in the middle
    of…of where they need to go. And so they’re really
    appreciative of that. The
    resorts in the area, when you’re coming
    through a small rural town you don’t realize that the
    population in the summer grows quite drastically. Cause all
    the people that have their vacation homes or RV
    sites they come to this area so a small town of a few
    hundred can grow to a few
    thousand during the summer time. And all
    of us are connected by four-wheeler
    trails, ATV trails hiking trails. And so we’re all
    interconnected in some form or fashion. When
    you’re in a rural area, all the resorts and supper
    clubs, we’re all connected. And we all rely on each other
    too, for different purposes and needs. And this is the
    reason why a lot of our customers come from all around,
    is for Lake Winnibigoshish. Lake Winnibigoshish is one of
    the largest lakes in the state
    of Minnesota. The fishing’s great
    here, the swimming is great. Just the outdoor living aspect of Winnie itself. It’s a beautiful lake. This is
    the place to come to. Winnie is great for this is
    because there are sandbars so
    you can be way out there and the water will
    still be like waist high. Parents used to say, “Come on
    in! You’re too far out!” But the water was only here.
    It’s a beautiful lake, it’s very peaceful, it’s
    calming. You can’t ask for anything more.« Scott: Far
    across beautiful lake Winnibigoshish,
    from Mr. Dahl-Wooley’s resort is Bowen Lodge. Owned and
    operated by Bill and Gail Heig, Bowen Lodge
    is perched high above the waves of Lake Winnie and a
    short walk to a smaller secluded water, Cut-Foot-Sioux
    Lake» Hi, I’m Gail Heig and I live at Bowen Lodge on Lake Winnibigoshish in northern
    Minnesota. My husband Bill and I have been in
    the resort industry for 33 years. We first came into the industry when my
    father-in-law bought the resort in 1982. And we have been here
    ever since. It is an awesome place and we’re fortunate that we have so
    many people that come back year after year. And it becomes
    a tradition in their families and…and…it these kids, look at them,
    they’re riding their bikes for
    the first time without having their parents being right with
    them. Parents say over and I’ve heard it many
    times, that this is the first
    time they can really ever let their
    kids run around in freedom to enjoy just, you know, that they don’t worry about
    what’s going to happen to them at Bowen Lodge. So Herb
    and Jessie Bowen came over here
    from Cut-Foot-Sioux Inn and then to Eagle Nest.
    When he died over at Eagle Nest, Jessie
    Bowen who they also called Ma Bowen came
    over here to Bowen Lodge. They ran Bowen
    Lodge with ah, her and her daughter
    and son-in-law. And then they sold it in 1946 to George and Rose Goodwin. And the Goodwin family ran the resort for, probably 20 years before selling it to one other couple and then they sold it one more time.
    These were just short term ah, stays for these
    people. And then in 1982 my father-in-law bought the resort and we have been running it ever
    since. So from 1982 until now 2015, we’ve run Bowen
    Lodge. Well, I can’t decide if I love my front yard better or my
    back yard better? It’s spectacular. And I love these
    days with these billowing clouds
    come in like this. And these idyllic days of summer
    where you can just kick back. I have two boys that
    grew up here, and they lived in a dream world. I mean,
    look at this is what they grew
    up in every day. Sand castles on the beach
    and hangin’ out and making friends. And
    swimming. And tubing, jumping on the
    trampoline. And it’s pretty…pretty good
    stuff. There are a few things that make Bowen Lodge unique. I
    think a big drawing factor actually is that it is
    an owner operated business. When they
    come here they are going to see Bill and
    Gail. They are going to ask about our kids. Being owner
    operated we spend a lot of attention on
    details and we listen to our customers and we make
    changes when we have to make changes. The lake itself is unique to this area. It’s a
    70,000 acre lake that is 96%
    undeveloped. And never will be. So when they
    go out fishing they’re guaranteed to see bald
    eagles and loons. There won’t be jet ski’s, there won’t
    be docks. There won’t be private homes
    along the shore line, it’s all
    very undeveloped. I love trees and and I have a real reverence for
    trees and this is my favorite tree on
    Sugarbush Point. It’s a old, old grand daddy sugar maple that the Indians
    used to tap. You can see all the butt swells from where they
    used to it. And I love to do a core a sample and see
    how old it is, but it’s hollow
    in the middle. So it’s ah, hard to actually
    age it. But I mean it’s just you know I
    mean I just love just to walk
    over and put my hand on it and think of all the
    things and what happened with this
    tree. It’s pretty amazing. I
    think when people come here, they
    know that there will be changes every year because we upgrade
    and we do changes every year
    but we still keep the core values of a
    family resort. And their tradition of
    Bowen Lodge. They have to know that they are
    cabins they’re not lake homes, they’re
    cabins and they have to enjoy the fact that they are cabins.
    And we really like that. One of the things that I’m
    really proud of that Gail does
    here is that ah, she plants tomatoes at each cabin and then she has herbs.
    How many places have ah tomatoes at each
    cabin? Well, this area that we’re in
    is also bordered on a research natural
    area, it’s called the Battle Point Research
    Natural Area. Is designated for old growth
    hard wood old growth oak, bass wood and
    maple. And it was designated in I believe 1991 by
    the forest service and the nature
    conservancy as a protected forest. So there is
    no motorized traffic around us. It is the largest
    stand of northern hardwoods west of the Mississippi. So there is no
    other stand like this of these old
    growth hard woods west of the Mississippi. You
    can go over towards Cass Lake and you won’t see any hard
    woods like you have right here on this stand. It’s never been
    logged and it’s never been
    damaged by fire. So it’s extremely
    unique there are protected plant
    species here that you don’t
    find anywhere else in the United
    States. Seems kind of funny I’m going
    to take some time to show you a
    septic system. But one of the things
    that happened in the shore line
    zone is that you know, over
    development is really hard on the lake and so you
    want to make sure that the
    septic isn’t flowing. So we took great
    measures to build a system well way way from the
    lake. So that we could still develop
    and make Bowen Lodge what it is without
    harming things. And so all
    everything collects and comes here. And
    then these black pods that you see are full of
    Irish peat. So all the affluent that comes
    from all the cabins get pumped back here and
    treated. The Irish peat actually treats it and then
    sends it into the ground. And then flows away
    from the lake so nothing ah, goes towards the
    lake at all. And it’s really interesting
    cause a lot of people come here
    and they spend their money and I love to
    take them here to say this is where your money goes,
    this is what we do to our do our job to protect the
    environment. So we like to keep that really
    pristine and beautiful. We’re surrounded by
    the Chippewa National Forest. We actually are bordered in all
    areas by the Chippewa National
    Forest, it’s over a million
    acres of national forest land. We’re also within the Leech Lake
    Indian reservation, so we are private land on the
    reservation in the national forest. And on the um the upper Mississippi
    watershed. So this is all very very
    unique, the Mississippi river runs through Lake Winnie.
    And ah, 3 other water systems feed
    into Lake Winnie. So it’s really a unique
    area, we love it. It’s absolutely beautiful. Scott: Our tour takes us back
    south to Nisswa, Minnesota where we
    visit the historic Grand View Lodge on Gull Lake.
    My name is Mark Ronnei. I am the General
    Manager here at Grand View
    Lodge. I’ve been here for 38 years. I was in Hotel School in
    Marshall, Minnesota. And ah, after I graduated there
    I came here to do 3 months and I never left. I
    started here as a summer intern. I think my
    internship was almost over. Grand View
    Lodge was founded in 1916 by a gentleman with the
    name of M.V. Baker. Mr. Baker, his ah goal in life was to be a real
    estate developer. And he put Grand View together as a
    way to get people to come up here, stay at the resort and
    buy some real estate. He owned 2 1/2 miles of shore line on the north shore of Gull
    Lake when he first moved up here. Today, the value
    of that is incalculable. But he was ahead
    of his time. Ah, he sold 50 foot lots on the
    lake and his wife ran the Hotel. I’m
    Steve Hanson, I started at Grand View Lodge in 1981. I
    manage the garden pro shop that’s just a few feet
    away from this spot. I’ve
    always been interested in history.
    Especially Grand View’s
    history. About 3 years ago I started putting
    the archives together a bit on my own. And then a
    couple years after that Grand View embraced the idea of
    our centennial that was coming
    up very soon. Now we’re looking at
    next year, 1916 was the key year for Grand View
    to begin with. And of course 100 years later we’re in
    2016. Behind me is our cottage, I call the Baker
    cottage. The founder of Grand View was
    Marvin V. Baker. He and his
    wife Harriet started this business.
    Initially it was supposed to be a real estate business
    according to Marvin. But Harriet was a great
    hostess. They could see the
    compatibility of the two businesses working
    together. And it was a hit. It’s ah, lasted
    all this time every season’s been covered for
    99 years right now. When they arrived here in 1916
    as owners on the property was a lodge
    that had built by ah Sheriff Spaulding
    and he owned Grand View for a year. He
    didn’t call it Grand View it
    was just going to be a hunting lodge. But the
    Bakers saw that as a place where they could entertain
    people. That was the start of
    it. There were a few rooms. In what
    we would now term like a small hotel. Inside those walls was
    the homesteaders cabin of the Berg family. They
    tried to make a go been here for about 10 years,
    right around 1890 to 1900. Didn’t work out. There
    was some turmoil about the property, just no body
    seemed to know what to do with
    it. But when Marvin Baker saw the
    property he could see what it
    would look like in a few years. Gull
    Lake was still in a point where it was ah low yet. Ah the primitive dam was just been
    built, so it was filling up
    into the reservoir we now know as Gull
    Lake. So when Marvin Baker and Harriet
    Baker started Grand View it was simply the large hotel that
    was just over my right shoulder. June 1st 1921 the Lodge opened
    for business. It created a center
    piece for this lodge that we’ve developed through all
    these years. Initially it was used for dining, small
    kitchen, large dining room, lobby and a ball
    room upstairs. It was actually maybe the
    hottest place around for a decade in the 20’s.
    Regular dances a beautiful setting on a great
    lake. We’re at a time of prohibition so it’s a little
    complicated as far as the
    culture. Um, there were ah people from
    Chicago that were in the boot leg
    business. I think Minnesota was mostly used as a
    place to get away from the
    trouble. And ah, the violence for the
    most part. Ah, they all had gambling and alcohol. And ah, it was a time that ah, deserves further study. But it is a part of the area.
    It went on throughout the 20’s into the 30’s. In 1937 ah Judy and Brownie Cote, ah a couple
    from Edina, Minnesota bought Grand View Lodge
    primarily as a place to house the parents of the kids who attended the camps
    that they owned on the next lake over. They
    owned Camp Lake Huberts and Camp Lincoln which were
    founded in 1908. These are world renowned
    children’s camps and they needed a place for the parents to stay
    when they were dropping off the kids and sometimes for the
    whole time. So they purchased
    Grand View at that time as just another one
    of their businesses. Mr. And
    Mrs. Cote had Grand View Lodge and the
    children’s camps and those were summer
    businesses. And then they got
    into the ranch business. Right now
    they own Tanque Verde Guest ranch, which is one of
    the nations largest dude ranches. And that’s in Tucson,
    Arizona. Now they have opposite seasons and they
    started to get into the ah, resort business a
    little more earnestly. Ah, once they got in the…the
    ah ranch business. They realized that,
    you know, they could expand Grand View to be something more
    than just a spot for some
    campers parents. And Grand View grew
    from being open 100 days a year, which is
    what it was when the camps were it’s primary
    mission, to now being open all year round. The lodge
    was built where it is right now because down by the lake it’s
    quite low. And they needed to get it up on
    a spot where they could view the lake
    and it would be safer from the changes in elevations of
    the lake. The flooding that was
    potentially there. The permanent dam was built on
    Gull in 1912. And steadily throughout the teens, the lake
    improved as far as appearance fishing, it’s a higher
    elevation than it used to be often. But it gave
    the beautiful lake that we now know. The uniqueness of
    Grand View is in it’s atmosphere. People have
    told me hundreds times, a thousand times,
    they’re not on vacation until they turn into
    our front door. When they turn into the
    entrance of Grand View,
    everything melts away. They’re on vacation.
    Things change. Grand View has grown from 200 guests to a
    1000. But our atmosphere, the feeling of a family resort
    which we were first of all the feeling of being truly up
    north in Minnesota it’s a Minnesota resort, the
    trees are here, the atmosphere
    is here, the obviously with the main
    lodge being configuration it is
    out of logs people come here from all over
    the world and they just have
    this unique experience of this is
    northern Minnesota. We’ve kept the trees, we have
    multiple multiple 150 year old trees
    around here. They love seeing that. We haven’t
    over developed the property. But it’s that feeling, they
    feel safe here. They feel like time stands still just a
    little bit. When they’re walking down to
    the lake, they’re walking on
    the same path that someones walked for 100 years. And
    they’re looking at the same lake that someones looked at
    for a 100 years. They’re coming
    out of the same front doors of the lodge that
    someones come out for a 100
    years. That’s a pretty unique
    experience. For me the excitement about this
    centennial for Grand View is
    going to be the fact that’s going to mirror American
    history. Well as a historian I appreciate that these 100
    years were the 100 years of the
    greatest development in the
    world and especially in our country.
    The whole age of technology started about the time Grand
    View started. The radio, television,
    everything we know the computer age, everything
    developed during these 99 years and we’ll be celebrating
    next year. Hi, I’m Frank Soukup, director of marketing.
    And welcome to Grand View
    Lodge. Behind us is the historic main
    lodge of Grand View built in 1921. So let’s take a tour of
    Grand View Lodge. This is where everybody’s vacation
    begins. This is the front desk in the main
    lodge. And of course everybody’s favorite place to
    get their photo taken right in front of the fire place
    below the moose. We actually had so many people
    asking us to take photos of
    their family in front of the main fire place
    that we had to actually put a
    photo booth here. This way they can share it via
    social media. And just send it to themselves
    and take a photo at any time of the day without any body’s
    help. And before Grand View actually became the golf club
    that it is now, we were also known for tennis. And
    tennis we were known nationally. And that was our main seal.
    This is every body’s favorite sweet spot at
    Grand View, the Chocolate Ox. The Chocolate Ox is an ice
    cream shop and of course everybody’s favorite candy
    store. Toffee, chocolate, fudges truffles. Every type of candy
    you could think of. And of course a fantastic staff
    right behind the counter. « Hi» This is our Lodge dining
    room and originally the historic lodge was built as
    a meeting place and also as a
    place for our guests to dine when
    they stayed at the Inn. So this is where they would come in for
    dinner, breakfast and lunch. Now it’s just a restaurant for
    dinner. 1979 we were labeled as a historic
    lodge, so it’s important
    whenever we re-do or try to re-fix
    things up that we’re using
    things from the era, ah, to actually
    make the mends. But when we turned this into
    it’s own restaurant we tried to keep with some of those
    traditions and utilizing things
    and art work from the area and the
    state. Many of our guests prefer not
    to sit inside especially on a
    nice summer day, so of course we have this
    beautiful outdoor patio for
    everybody to enjoy dinner. To my left
    here is actually the grand staircase and the
    main artery for everybody
    staying on the main property to get to
    the main lodge while they’re dining. And as
    you noticed, there’s lots and
    lots of flowers. Over 10,000 flowers
    are planted every single year at Grand View. Ah, it’s just
    unique to our whole property. As you can see, the
    flowers really enhance the
    view. And it makes you just happy,
    they’re coming to dinner or
    going back to your cabin. So this is the grand staircase. So the grand staircase here,
    we’ll do over 100 weddings a year just off of
    these staircases. Lot of weekends we’ll do
    anywhere from 5-7 ceremonies that are literally off this
    staircase. And the bride will
    come down the stairs, people will sit to
    the left and the right and the vows are actually spoke
    where we’re standing. So the most important and most
    popular area of our whole resort especially in the summers, is
    the beach. And the beach contains 1,500
    feet of sandy beach on north side of Gull Lake. As
    well as our small restaurant Loonies, and then
    our waterpark which is open year round. « sounds of kids playing in
    back» So we’re looking at Roy Lake
    cabins which are some of our most
    popular cabins, especially for romantic couples. They’re one
    bedroom fully modernized cabins that sit just feet off
    of Roy Lake. Because Grand View
    sits on 640 acres, you can have easily a
    1,000 people on main property over here at the
    Roy Lake area, without really realizing that there’s
    that many people. The Roy Lake area has it’s own private
    little marina and beach. A lot of our families really
    prefer these areas because they’re not on the main
    beach or main property there’s
    a little seclusion and a little more
    quaintness to them. So at Grand View we have two
    professional golf courses,
    champion style. One is the Preserve. But
    we’re gonna go check out the Pines. So my name is Jeff
    Munneke, I’m our Vice President of Fan
    Experience and Basketball
    Academy with Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx. Ah, this
    is an annual outing that we have every year called the TImber
    Slugs Open. Which is a portion of obviously our
    Timberwolves staff our Lynx
    staff and then several other assorted
    members that come along from
    the University of Minnesota, Nike golf, as well as a couple
    of other friends. And so this is an annual event that we
    do, get away from the office
    for a couple of days before the season. We call it
    the Timber Slugs open and we play for a pair of green rubber
    work boots. And we inscripted the names of
    the winners into these and so
    these are fairly recent. The old work
    boots got a little bit
    weathered and tattered. Ah, but ah these
    are the new work boots. Our champion just donned these
    and put these on and this is
    our traveling trophy on a year to year basis. Golf
    is huge. Spa is huge. Laying on the
    beach, reading the newspaper is huge. Walking around with a
    cup of coffee is a huge activity here. All the
    fitness activities. Bicycling, I mean there are
    more bicycles than people here sometimes. You see people just
    relaxing. We have six restaurants and
    they want to be taken care of so that includes the fact that
    no body has to cook. But they can come out for
    dinner in a different
    experience without leaving the resort. Scott: Crow Wing Crest Lodge in
    Akeley, Minnesota is our next visit. Kim and Big John Bowen
    own and operate this resort at the headwaters
    of the Crow Wing chain of lakes. My name is Kim Bowen and my husband Big John and I
    bought this resort called Crow Wing Crest Lodge
    here in Akeley back in 2001. This is our 15th
    season in resorting. Wonderful years, challenging years. And
    we are still happy at what we do. That has
    to say something. Ah, we feel pretty
    strongly that we are just stewards of this
    place, there’s a lot of history here. A lot of folks that have
    been coming back year after
    year. And ah, we’re really just here to take care of the place and
    give it on to other folks in the
    future, so. Ah, one of the interesting
    things about this place is our
    lodge was built in 1898 as part of
    the Red River Logging Company. That
    was an Akeley project with a big
    lumber mill. It was started in a partnership
    between H.C. Akeley and T.B.
    Walker. And ah, the lumber mill in Akeley was about a 17 year run
    and they came up to this area for the white
    pine. Ah, one of the interesting things
    that we found when we were
    putting dryers and washers in the back
    part of it, is we were drilling through the wall
    to put a vent in and all of this saw dust started coming
    out and that is what they used for insulation. Because
    that’s what they had! An abundance of saw dust. So
    that was kind of an interesting
    start. Once the mill burnt down in 1916 this was sold off to a number
    of different owners until World War 2. Ah, another interesting aspect
    before World War 2 was a lady
    named Annabelle Carins bought it and
    ran this place as Aunt Polly’s girls camp from
    1931 to 1939. And we have this
    wonderful photo the oldest one that we have of
    two young ladies in the driveway with little
    pinafores and handkerchiefs on
    their heads, so. I don’t know kind of
    a strange little thing, girls were
    shipped in here by rail to
    learn etiquette? In the middle of north woods
    Minnesota, so that was kind of an interesting part of
    the history. And it was nothing for a couple of years during
    World War 2 due to a gas shortage. And then a couple
    named Marv and Edna Richmond bought it in 1946. And
    they are the ones that really turned this into a
    family vacation resort. The very first time we drove in
    this resort when we were looking, it was
    the middle of February there was 4 foot of snow on the
    ground. Kim and I saw the owners home, looked at
    the bridge and we looked at each other and
    we said, this is it. And this is after looking at 70
    or 80 other resorts. You just kind of had the
    feeling that it was sacred
    ground. And it was just so beautiful.
    The trees the road, the entrance to the
    resort. And right now, we are crossing
    the actual headwaters of the whole Crow Wing chain.
    11 lakes, 60 miles of river. And just like Lake Itasca, it’s
    in my yard. And the sound of a babbling
    brook all spring is quite a gift. We just love it. It’s not just
    a place to vacation with your kids,
    that’s important in and of
    itself. When you get away from your
    home environment and you’re patterns of
    behavior, there’s a a big gift in that. You’re doing yourself a gift. In your mental
    health and well being. This place in particular, I
    think really entrenches the idea of
    relaxation and getting off the grid if you
    choose. I love some of these photos to illustrate that. So I
    look at this photo from maybe 1953 of a bunch of adults sitting on hand made swings,
    watching their children frolic in the lake. On
    paddle boats and canoes and row boats. And
    if you walk down there today 2015 you will see parents sitting on the swings and
    watching their kids playing in the lake, frolicking,
    laughing. Flipping around on stand up
    paddle boards now and still kayaks and paddle boats and
    things. « People talking in background
    » One of the nicest things that was in my wish list when
    we looked at resorts was being on the northeast side
    of the lake to catch the prevailing wind to
    keep the bugs off. Another great thing about this
    piece of property is the common area everybody
    gets to use is next to the lake shore,
    which so many resorts the cabins are lined up right
    on the shore and you wake people up going fishing, starting a
    boat. To where we have the swings, the basketball
    court, the volley ball court, the beach. And we have
    two tiers of cabins. All with lake view. But
    where everybody gets to play there are no
    cabins and ah, that’s pretty rare as far as resorts in
    Minnesota. Ah, it’s a beautiful gathering
    area and that’s what we people do.
    We do a pot luck luau every Thursday night where
    we dress Hawaiian, play Hawaiian music.
    Sometimes that’s the only good meal a resort owner gets in a
    week is the potluck luau, so. That’s one of our favorite
    nights, and a good way for
    everybody to get together and know each
    other. We are traditional resort we offer traditional things
    here, cabin by the lake. Activities that we
    do, traditional things like bingo
    and kids crafts and pool table tournament and sand
    castle contest. My husband Big John and I, we
    had a vision of what we wanted to create
    here. And that was to incorporate our more holistic
    healing kinds of things into this environment. We felt
    it was a really good fit for us. And we immediately started
    as soon as we bought, boom went right into him, in fact
    right now what he’s doing is working on two people back to
    back doing reflexology in our
    basement. So he’d been doing that for
    about 40 years before we moved here. And so I
    teach aroma therapy classes. I started drumming
    circles 15 years ago. We do retreats in the spring
    and the fall. Lots more friends of ours come up
    and provide massage services. We do yoga on the
    lawn every week and ah, we have a lake side
    sauna. We have a little bit deeper opportunity I
    think for people to really heal if they want to. And we’re not pushy about it,
    just like if you don’t want to
    come to bingo well don’t sign up for it. We
    have a sign up sheet for
    everything. If you don’t want
    to do origami frogs with the kids
    on Tuesday, well don’t sign up for it. Go read a book in
    your cabin, do what you want,
    pet the chipmunk whatever. If you want, you can
    come to aroma therapy class if you want, you get your feet
    worked on. Ah if you want you can have an ionic detox
    foot bath or get your ears
    candled. There’s opportunities here that
    ah make us a little bit unique, I
    think. Looking up is our 250 year old
    white pine that we call Luna, which sings
    in any small breeze. And this is also a very
    popular cabin with the spirit of the big white
    pine. That’s the ancient mother, yes.
    It’s ah the only one they left when they cleared all
    the forest and maybe it’s cause
    she was so gnarly and so many lower
    limbs compared to the ones that they liked to cut
    down were 150 feet up to the first limb. So maybe being the old gnarly mother is
    what saved her life. There’s two or three others on
    the property and one of them died of old age just a few
    years ago. But it’s ah quite the canopy here at the
    resort. We love it, so. Scott: It’s a short distance as the crow flies to Huddles
    Resort on beautiful Leech Lake. Roy and Kay Huddle own
    and operate this multi generational resort. Well, my name is Roy Huddle and
    we’re here at Huddles Resort in
    Whipholt, Minnesota. That’s right on Leech Lake. I’m Kay Huddle, I’m Roy’s wife
    and ah, I’ve only been up here 34
    years compared to the 70 some years
    that Roy’s been here. Roy and I met here up at the
    resort. I came up here on a
    vacation to stay in my brothers place
    here, and we just finally fell in love
    with each other and got married a few months
    later. So we took our time and married after
    we had met each other two and half to three months.
    « Laughing» And ah, it’s been great since and now
    we’ve been married 34 years!
    Kay: 34 years later! Well, I came to be in this line
    of business because back in 1928 my grandfather and father came
    up and started this resort. There
    was nothing here at the time. Just the woods. They
    built the lodge, a small part of the
    lodge. And added cabins over the years. So it’s
    been a growth period of over many years. When they first came up here
    the main highway went right through the resort
    and now it’s south of it. But the roads coming from
    Brainerd and that were all gravel even through Brainerd,
    when they first came up. So, a long time ago in history
    and it’s just grown over the years. And
    here we go! Now we’re on the west end of a little area called
    Whipholt. That it’s used to be a couple
    resorts down that way, but now it’s all just
    summer homes and cabins. And privately owned. So this is our end cabin right down here. And then we have a triplex unit
    here. And cabins like I said, spaced
    along the lake shore. And that we’re going now, heading west. From the resort. And there are
    points out that we do have a restaurant we
    do serve meals. Breakfast, lunch and the
    evening meals, so. That’s our lake shore down
    there, with the swimming down there. And this
    is primarily swimming in the lake or pulling water
    skiers and tubers. This area down in front. Again, we’re going by the
    lodge. The old part is with the peak
    this way, that’s where the old part of the lodge was. We also
    have that’s the pool area. We have RV hookups for RVs. We have ten of those. Spaced out around the resort. Not in with the
    cabins but in their area. And this is a duplex unit that has 2-4
    bedrooms in it. But there’s some of the
    older cabins that have been placed
    along the shore. And that over the years, so. It’s a lot of history, a lot of
    fun. I mean it’s one of the oldest continuing
    operating resorts in one family in the area and in the state even, you
    know. There’s other resorts that could be
    older but they’ve changed hands and so it’s the draw of people coming to see us and
    getting to know us so well and that is a big draw to here.
    Leech Lake is an exceptionally beautiful
    lake. It’s got a lot of shore line, lot of points and
    islands. And a lot of variety in fishing. And at
    first fishing was the main attraction. It
    would have been a lot more not the families, it would be
    guys coming up fishing and doing that type of
    thing. But it’s grown into a whole family type of resort,
    operation. Not just ours but other resorts
    in the area. « waves» And we’re on the road that
    takes you to the harbor which is
    about a block from the lodge, or a little
    more. And here’s part of the crew of kids
    coming up. There’s kids all over the resort. And the
    family. Hi kids!« Hi» Having a good time, that’s what
    counts. Hi! So down here is ah, there’s an area that we park
    boats and that on while they’re launching them
    and putting them in the water
    to go fishing. That little bridge
    goes across to a cabin we have in the woods. And
    that is part of the resort. And this is a little crick that
    connects us to a little lake that we have a
    couple cabins on. Called Linda Lake. That’s an excellent crappie,
    bass, northern sunfish type lake. And this is a shot of our harbor. There’s a
    lot of the boats are out on the lake. But it’s a good protected
    harbor, room for about 25 boats, and that. And this is our the layout of
    the harbor. We have gas, bait, minnows leeches, night crawlers
    anything you need for fishing. There’s a shot of just another part of the
    harbor. Scott: That’s beautiful! Roy:
    It’s beautiful you’re looking
    down Leech Lake now towards the big
    public beach area that’s a lot of fun to have.
    And this is Bear Island out there and
    Pelican. So, just a scan of what there
    is in the area. « waves splashing» The lake was here first. And then we followed the lake. And because we like the area like the lake, so that’s the
    connection of this resort being pulled here, my folks
    did. And it’s a big draw for our guests because
    you can go out and look at the lake and
    you can go one day to this area, one day to another area.
    The lake is a connection to Walker. We can go
    by boat or by car. How are you doing kids? « ..can we have a ride» Roy:
    Can you have a ride? « Yeah! We’re just that lazy»
    Roy: Jump on the back. I get a lot of good riders when I go around announcing
    activities and that. So and the kids are always
    welcome. But they had a long ways to go,
    they had about 50 feet. So we don’t want them worn out. I think they
    expect that Roy’s going to be pulling
    tubers and skiers every day. I think they expect there’s
    going to be a family dance a talent show night, we have
    bon fires. Turtle races. Once they’ve
    experienced that they come back and expect those
    things, you know. Look…oh boy!« Laughs» Scott: Madden’s on Gull Lake was struck by the
    same storm that damaged other homes and businesses in the
    Brainerd lakes area. Clean up and restoration was
    under way as we visited with the owner operator family. Hi
    I’m Brian Thuringer. I’m the general manager owner
    and general manager of Madden Resorts. We are
    celebrating our 86th year at Madden’s. This is my 42nd
    year. This is my wife Deb on the
    left. So my wife Deb, has also been
    here 42 years. And she is in charge of
    the design of the resort. Both
    interiors and exteriors. Her father was the founder of Madden’s with his brother. And
    they came to the Gull Lake area in the mid to late 30’s. The first building at Maddens,
    the Roberts Hotel, which was built in 1929. And we look at that as our starting
    stake which gives us the 86 years. Maddens sits on about a
    1,000 acres of land. We’ve got a couple
    miles of shore line. And we are a summer seasonal recreational resort. We have 63 holes of golf. And out of the
    63 holes of golf we have one golf digest top 100
    golf course. We were Conde Nast top 100 last year in the world, which
    is terrific for a Minnesota resort. We’re very
    proud of that. My dad is..was Jim. Um, both gentlemen are deceased now, but. The original
    people that ah owned most all of the property
    on this end of the lake were from
    Kansas City. Mr. Harrison and Mr. Start. They built the
    old hotel that Brian referenced.
    Opened in 1929 as well as the first 18
    holes that opened in 1929 as well. Jack was about 26 and my father was 19 when they considered getting into the
    resort business of which they knew nothing
    about. Well, they were both at the
    University of Minnesota. And they had an uncle, uncle
    Tom Madden, who had a bar on 371. And he told them, Mr. Roberts
    was looking for someone to run his golf
    course so Jack grabbed at that
    opportunity and came up to run the golf course. He invited Jim
    then to help him. Of course, we’re talking about
    the depression so as all developments or as many
    developments during that period of time they were first hired on a day by
    day basis. And then were offered to
    lease it the following year because
    the developers could not afford to pay them. So the first year, or the second year they were
    here they had the opportunity
    to lease the golf course for $500 for that
    season. They could not afford to pay
    them the $500. But yet, Mr. Roberts…Harrison and Start saw something in
    those two young men and decided to deed the golf course to them if
    they would operate it. So that’s what happened. And
    then from there, everything was
    built as they could build it. Ah, Mr. Roberts…ah, his son or his daughter actually,
    followed in his steps. Ruth Gedding and
    Ruth and Lett Gedding, they ran
    Roberts Hotel until 1965 And then in 1965 the Maddens bought the Roberts
    Hotel. Then in 1970 there was another
    resort on Wilson Bay, that was owned by Max
    Ruttger. So in 1970 the Maddens bought Ruttger’s resort and Max
    Ruttger’s resort. So all of the building here has been done since 1929
    through the years and about every 10 years
    there’s an expansion. So the resort is a little
    different than most in that it was not
    built at one time. So there really isn’t one
    theme. There are many themes. The golf
    courses that we have each were built in a different
    period and during a different
    golf philosophy. Which makes it very
    interesting. So, we feel we have about 300
    units and because as we have as we’re
    sitting right now at Madden lodge, which is
    colonial. And then we have Wilson Bay which is
    typical Minnesota log lodge. And then we have Madden Inn, which is more of a
    50’s feel. So, guests coming here
    have an opportunity to choose from whatever design they would feel most
    comfortable. And we have all the recreational amenities
    from croquet lawn bowling, golf, fishing. Ah, we have a full blown
    marina. We have a full blown recreation
    center. We have 3 dining rooms and 2 additional
    restaurants. We have a restaurant of
    pizza…restaurant. And then we have The Classic which
    is in our Classic clubhouse. We have a restaurant
    that is about 1 mile away from the resort. So
    we have many dining options for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
    Hi, I’m Abbey Pieper we’re at Maddens, we’re down at
    the Lodge. I’m the Vice President here. I’m Ben
    Thuringer, we’re at the ah
    Madden Lodge at Maddens. I’m the Vice
    President and Madden Lodge
    manager. You know our grandfather
    expanded this area and really put the foot print
    of Maddens here. Our parents put The Classic in
    place, put our golf villas in place. And
    ah, each generation has contributed significantly
    to why Maddens is still here. So
    that really brings up the question for
    Abbey and I, in which, what are
    we going to do to continue that legacy. And
    what do we have to offer to Maddens? I think
    it’s an amazing amount of pressure. 75% of businesses, family businesses,
    fail in the 3rd generation. That is a stat that Ben and I
    are very acutely aware of. And have set ourselves up as
    best we can and I think my parents
    would say that they have done everything they can to put us
    in a position where we aren’t part of that part of that statistic. You
    know, you grow up in the business it’s not
    like someday you show up and
    you you know, are in a new
    business. We grew up here, but then we’ve taken
    additional steps to ah, provide us with the tool
    set that we need to create the next you know, 40 plus years of amazing hospitality.« Ready»
    « We’re ready» Alright, I’m inviting you to
    come with me to tour Maddens. I am Kathy Reichenbach, I am
    the marketing director at Maddens. I’ve been
    here for 34 years! My job description is about 25
    pages long. I do everything from marketing
    the resort to people outside as well as marketing
    all of our services on property. We are heading up
    to the historic Roberts Hotel that Brian and
    Deb talked about in their interview. It was
    built in 1929. I meet with a lot of travel
    writers, media people do a lot of tours and showing
    off this beautiful property. is probably the best part of my
    job. We are going into the Roberts Hotel that was
    built in 1929. You have a view of Steamboat
    Bay on this side on the other side of
    the hotel you’ll see the Pine Beach east golf course that was
    opened in 1926. This was the original lobby and dining rooms and also guest
    rooms on this floor. There are 3 floors in this
    hotel. There are 40 guest rooms in this building right
    now. Some were small hotel rooms that we have made
    into like where we took two small
    hotel rooms and made them into one big room. So some of
    the rooms are very unique they have may have two bathrooms in
    them. Or we have suites. Some face the golf
    course, some face the lake. This was owned by Arthur
    Roberts who was a hotelier and owned many
    properties around the country. Rochester, Florida, ah different areas. And he sold it to the Madden brothers in the
    70’s. One of the comments that we
    hear from our guests is, this
    reminds them of Dirty Dancing. We are going into the golf club area
    of the Madden Inn. We are starting to
    use a lot of our historic
    photos in our guest rooms and our dining rooms,
    more of our public areas
    because we have an awesome library of
    wonderful photography. So we are over looking the Pine Beach East golf course.
    This was the course that was built in 1926. So from this view you get a
    back side of the hotel. As well as Wilson Bay. Almost from every vantage point
    you can see water. And Madden lodge, the dining
    room is surrounded on three
    sides by water, which is very
    unusual. And water has a very calming
    effect. If you took two dynamics of Maddens, which
    I feel are super important, it’s
    going to be water and golf. So, water and turf we take both
    of those and accentuate them so that the public can use
    them to their to the maximum ability. And
    we’re very fortunate that we have a clean lake. And we have
    a lakes association that takes
    keeping our lake clean. Fairly good fishing. Um,
    certainly the views are lovely no matter
    where you can take a boat about 17 miles up and ah, have a lovely day on the lake. We have an experienced culinary staff. Our
    director of food and beverage has been
    here for almost 40 years, over 30 years. And so we keep a culinary staff on a year
    round basis. Ah they’re in training in the
    winter. But that certainly stabilizes our food offerings
    for a seasonal resort. We really try to support our
    local economy through buying as much local
    food as we can. And we found that a lot of
    times these local local products, whether it’s
    the chickens that we get out of Pequot, the ducks that we get
    out of Pequot, some of the beets that we get out of south
    of town are ah far better product that we
    can get. We really really really make an effort to not only to
    be green but find the best ways to supply the ultimate guest experience
    and be green as well. As you go around the property
    you’ll see our chef’s gardens
    where we’re growing our herbs and yeah, you can have
    better herbs if you grow them yourself. So we
    really put a focus in our restaurants on the
    green initiatives as well. Having creative dishes, that
    have proteins that have been well respected
    through their lives and all the way to the plate. This is an inlet off Gull Lake, so a lot of our guests
    bring their own water craft. Park them right here, or they
    may come in um, just general public out on Gull Lake may come in, park
    their boat and go to our pizza
    shop for lunch or dinner. So we take what we do very
    seriously. We work on a year round basis
    to make sure that those people staying here
    on a seasonal basis have a great time. Scott: We visited Black Pine
    Beach Resort near Pequot Lakes, Minnesota on
    an unseasonably cool August day. While the
    beach was empty guests and families took
    advantage of the other
    amenities Lynn and Bob Scharenbroich’s resort
    offers. Hi, I’m Bob Scharenbroich. I own Black
    Pine Beach Resorts since 1977. We’re on the
    Whitefish chain of lakes in the Brainerd
    lakes area. And it’s just a great area to
    be in. We’re the 3rd owners of the resort. Lynn and I
    bought the resort in 1977. Moved here in early part
    of 1978. The ah, resort had ah, 6 cabins. So it was a start for us. Lynn’s mom and I came up driving around
    looking for resorts and we just happened to stumble
    across this one going down the road and there was a
    little sign out there that said
    for sale by owner and we drove in and the rest
    they say, is history. So welcome to Black PIne Beach
    Resort, I’m going to take all of you
    along on a tour and we’ll see what the resort has
    to offer and what it’s like and give a
    little glimpse into the history of this property. So we like to point out that we’ve
    got this garden area here as kind of a welcome. Some
    people that had been customers of ours
    years ago had said to me, oh you should make a big smile when people come in. So we did that. We took a part
    of our property there and made it into
    a nice smile garden. And that’s what that
    is, a smile to welcome everybody when they first
    arrive. It was 1977 Lynn and I had been looking at
    resorts primarily in the newspaper. We had looked
    at a few resorts over the years. But we hadn’t found anything
    that we liked. We’d been talking about getting
    into the resort business for a
    few years and Lynn actually grew up at a
    resort. And moved when she was 12 years
    old, so it was already in her
    blood. And ah, it sounded like a good
    endeavor to me as well. So right now, we’re getting to a part of the
    resort that was not originally part of the
    property. When we purchased this was owned by another
    family. Ah, they decided to sell and
    when we bought it, this part and then um a little ways over
    further that you can’t see right now beyond that tree, was the
    property that we bought. We found out later after we
    purchased it that this cabin, number 9, was in fact once upon a time, part
    of our resort and they added two wings onto that property which now makes
    it look a little different than
    the other cabins. But it was fun to find that
    out. The history of the resort goes way back to 1938. People by the name of Marion
    and Anne Arnold from Salem, Nebraska built the resort from
    scratch. They had people build the
    resort for them which was kind
    of unusual in the time. The banker ah,
    made them use ah, western lumber instead
    of local lumber which was unusual. And also
    that the resort owner didn’t build the resort
    himself, he had a construction
    crew build it. The Arnold’s owned
    the resort until ah, 1967 or 68′ and then a couple by the name
    of Stewarts Bill and Amy Stewart bought the
    resort. They ran it more as a hobby
    resort, it was only open from ah, July 1st until August 15th. So it was kind of a hobby one.
    And they had it for about 9 years and
    decided to put it up for sale and that’s when we happened to
    come across it. Now we’re getting to where the secret
    garden area is. This is the secret garden
    meadow and we’ve had two
    weddings in this secret garden meadow
    area. Both of them were with no plan
    B which made me nervous, but they
    did fine there was no bad weather and everything
    worked out really well. This is the first entry it’s
    hard to see this but it says
    Secret Garden ahead. And we’re coming into
    the secret garden area itself. Now this is
    a bridge that goes over a little
    water feature and that little water feature is in an interesting and historic
    location. It used to be county road 16, which is our road. This is where county road 16 used to
    run. And it’s all over grown now because
    it hasn’t been the road bed for a long long time. But it came
    up behind what is now our home and
    right through here and all the way down to where
    the first island is in our lake. That split our resort that is no
    longer a resort either on that end, in
    half and the owners of course didn’t
    care for that. So back in the 20’s when it was
    easier to move a road, they talked to the
    people who were out working on the county road and
    they moved the road. So it no longer was the road
    bed, so that’s kind of a little snippet of history. So we now
    have a water feature right here in
    this spot that was years ago county road 16. And this is the entrance into
    our secret garden. One of the special things about
    this secret garden is the secret garden mail box.
    We’ll go look at that and then
    we’ll go on and look at the rest of
    the cabins. Children who are here at the
    resort and sometimes adults too, like to write to the
    secret garden elf. So they do that they put their little note to the elf here in this little secret garden mail box you can
    see there’s a little reply in there right now. And
    that is a reply that the secret garden elf
    wrote over the night to a child who had a question
    about something within the secret garden area
    here. Another real fun thing about
    this garden even though it’s in the woods, it’s just one loop that goes
    all the way around you can’t get lost. So little
    children who want to come into the woods can just
    walk in the woods alone with no fear. And they do that a lot. So
    we’re gonna go back out now and take a look at the
    cabins. We’re coming up now to cabin 11 this one and the one on the other side of
    cabin 11 are identical cabins. Those were built when the
    Americans with Disabilities Act came out and we needed to
    comply with that. We made them so that you could move between the
    two of them easily. So if someone was
    here and were in a wheel chair they
    could visit friends who might be in the
    other one as well. In fact we had a visit from an
    advocate for handicapped folks right after we did this
    and that was one of the features that he was
    really impressed by. Often that isn’t the case when
    people are vacationing. If they are
    handicapped they can be in one cabin but they can’t visit any
    others, so. That was impressive for him and
    he said that was a real
    attractive feature for those folks. So
    we’re glad we did that. Our guests are all unique. They
    come from ah, a long ways away sometimes other countries. Ah
    some come from as close as Brainerd
    or even Pequot Lakes. They all have different life
    styles. We have people who work at
    grocery stores, we have doctors we have lawyers we have people who build houses. It’s
    just endless as to what they do as far as making a
    living. I think they, the main thing they all
    have in common is they love to be at the lake. They
    love to go to the beach. A beach is always important at
    a resort. Ok, now we’re going to switch
    from the cabins to the beach and we’ll take a walk
    down the walk way and I’ll tell
    a story about that. Ok, so this walk way does two things of course, it’s a walk way. It
    also channels the run off from the rain so that
    we don’t have a lot of washouts and difficult
    walking. And it’s worked really well for
    that. Ah, we just repaved the whole resort last year and
    had all of the run off water and
    everything um from both walk ways and driveways
    reoriented so it goes into either a rain garden or off on
    to the yard itself. So right now we’re at the beach and you’ll
    see there’s a retaining wall here now that wasn’t always a retaining wall. Before we
    bought the property people who are still guests of
    ours tell us a story about a huge tree that
    was down here and it got cut down I’m not sure what year, but it
    got cut down before we had the resort so it was prior
    to 77′. For many years after we bought
    the resort, roots would come up in the swimming
    area and we would be pulling huge
    roots from that tree out. Every time we would pull a root
    out and those people who recalled that
    tree were here, they would tell again the story about that
    huge tree. And how much they loved it
    cause it was a shade tree at the beach. We’ll have people
    playing volley ball, we’ll have people
    down on the beach of course
    swimming. We’ll have people that have
    done pig roasts down at the fire pit. We’ve had
    people doing fish fries on the fire pit or up
    outside of the cabin. Just the visiting with people is kind of interesting. People
    don’t know each other sometimes when they come here
    but they become friends. And with the social media they can stay in contact with each
    other so much more. There’s a real ah, involvement I think in most resorters mind set to making their beach area not just a wonderful and beautiful
    experience for sand castles and the customer fun but also the environmental side
    of it. And you have to try to balance that a little
    bit. Um, no one wants to play in
    gooey junk in the water. So you have to
    make sure that you don’t have
    that everywhere. But also, you want to make sure
    that you’re filtering as much of the rain water and any of
    those kinds of things as you
    can and doing what natural
    environmental growth will do. We have let an area on this end of our beach grow into a
    natural area. And that is our boat launching
    section. That area now this year, just sported some swamp milk weed and we had a
    monarch population there which was just fabulous
    to see. So even just a little area like
    that can do a lot for the natural side of things. Scott: Our final stop in
    Resorts of the North Woods is
    Ruttger’s Bay Lake Lodge near Deerwood,
    Minnesota. Father and son Jack and Chris Ruttger offer
    insight into their families historic legacy. Hi, my name is Jack Ruttger and I’m from Bay
    Lake, born and raised here and
    I love it. I’ve worked here all
    my life. Went away to college, went in the
    military for a couple of years came back in 1955 married and
    I’ve been here ever since. Working at the resort,
    I’m the 3rd generation Ruttger to run this resort. You carry a lot of pride. My
    grand father was the first obviously, he
    died when I was about 10. My
    father came on and he’s a tremendous
    operator. Operated through the
    depression, the depression of
    1930. And made this business go. He
    told one time of on August 2nd the heart
    of the season he had two people in the house.
    August 2nd in 1931 in the depression. He existed and held on and he
    was a fantastic operator. So he’s a..he’s a
    mentor. Father was a real mentor to me.
    And my grandfather came into this
    area back in, well he came to America in 1882. Gravitated up to Bay Lake in 1888 where he
    homesteaded the main island on the front.
    Father was born there in 1892. Moved to the main land
    traded the 45 acre island for this
    property and about 1895 had a berry farm here and grandpa
    worked in the saw mill. People started to come to the
    resort because of good fishing. Grandma was a
    great cook, good German cook. And the people
    then started to come from the plains states it was
    so hot down there. And so we say that our first
    registered guest was in 1898. So that we are 117 years old. And we are the
    oldest resort in the state of
    Minnesota still owned by one family. It’s always been in
    the Ruttger family the whole
    time. « Scott: Jack’s son, Chris
    Ruttger, took us on a golf cart tour later that autumn as the
    air cooled and the leaves warmed» I’m right
    now in the middle of what used to be highway 6. And back in ah the 50’s it was moved.
    But back in the day this was highway 6 and we’re in
    the middle of what was Bay Lake. A little town. Old
    historic buildings. There was a gas
    station, service station general store and then as things evolved it become part
    of our business. So now it’s a little retail
    district. The Garage, we call it now, is ah clothing and gift
    shop. And we’re just in the middle of
    some renovations so we’ve been repainting…these are
    buildings that are hundred years old so always
    lots of work to be done so carpenters are working on
    that in preparation for
    repainting of that building. Now we’re
    coming around to the back of the country store,
    that’s gonna get some work done
    to it also. But that was built by my great- uncles, again, over a hundred years ago as the Bay Lake Store. It’s now mostly clothing and
    gifts and other things in there. And then the next building
    coming up is the Fine Line Salon and Spa. It’s an Aveda concept salon that we have here
    at the resort for guests and ah, the local
    community. It’s one piece of the resort the one piece that’s open all
    year around. So, even in the
    winter their regular clients come in. As we
    continue down the former Highway 6, on either side here, to this side, the spa used to be the home of my great
    uncle Max and his family and then
    across the highway from them was the
    home of another great uncle Bill and his family. So,
    these families ah, eventually had their own resorts, there
    were five Ruttger resorts. So, these
    different family members
    branched out. But I find it interesting to
    remember that in the winters when these summer
    resorts are closed a lot of the families, we kinda regroup
    back at Bay Lake at the original home base and have their homes
    here in the winter time. So, as
    times gone on one house is now the spa, the
    other house is kind of a hospitality guest
    suite that we have here as part of the resort. So a lot
    of ah, history so woven in along with
    the new. A lot of pride and a lot of
    pressure. A lot of pride and a lot of pressure. My
    father’s three brothers all
    went in the resort business. The nephew went in
    the resort business at Ruttger’s Birchmont Lodge in Bemidji
    also. So there were five resorts at one
    time, it felt a lot of
    pressure, always a lot of pressure to try and
    live up to their legacy and do
    well. We’re gonna go down to the shore of Bay Lake and get a
    look at that area. Bay Lake’s the reason for our
    existence. Now this is fall cooler, you can tell just by
    the light of the water the sun shifted south. And the
    beach which even a month ago was full of people bathing and sunning is
    now pretty abandoned because it’s
    gotten cool. Here’s a great view of Bay Lake. And we’re on the north shore of Bay Lake. You
    can see out here where the fall colors are just
    starting to come out Isle of Pines, now called Malcerson Island, the island
    where my great grandfather
    originally homesteaded when he came here
    from Germany so through the long story of
    our history he ended up fortunately for us here on the
    main land and now we have it as a gorgeous
    view. The family that lives there has developed parts of it but they’ve been so
    nice. Our end of the island is
    pristine so we love our view here so much natural green shoreline all
    around. Bay Lake actually goes about
    five miles in that direction but it’s
    split up in to bays, hence the name. And a
    couple of big islands and so you don’t really see
    that much of it at one time. Fun lake to navigate. Good lake
    to fish. Well it’s Bay Lake so it has
    lots of bays. So the scenic value of Bay Lake
    is what one thing that is very, very
    valuable to our people. They love it. Fishing has
    always been a major draw from day one when this resort
    started fishing was a main thing that brought people
    here. But now golf has come on. We had one of the
    first resort golf courses in the state of
    Minnesota in 1922. We had a little golf course
    designed by Zig from Junction City, Kansas
    on a piece of cardboard. Today when you
    design a golf course you’ll pay hundreds of thousands of
    dollars. He took a piece of
    cardboard and a straight edge and lined out a golf course and
    that’s the golf course we have today, called it Alex
    Nine after my father. Had five greens, nine tees and
    in 1930 he re-did that and put it on
    four more greens. So now it had nine sand
    greens and nine tees and you could see the
    greens are fenced in to keep the cows
    out. You could see the cows and the
    horses in the background in the
    pasture and the fairways. So there’s no
    need to mow the grass because the cows and the horses
    did it and they fertilized the grass besides. So, we had
    fertilization and grass mowing with the cows
    and the horses on the fairways of the golf course in those
    days. But we then had a golf course to go along with
    the fishing. So those were our major draws
    for the activities for peoples activities. I think what sets us apart in some ways is just it’s
    a quieter area then some resort areas. We’re
    on a lake that’s gorgeous, good size but not as
    developed as some lakes. You look out and
    see so much natural shoreline here. A lot of people
    can’t believe they’re only a
    couple hours away from the Twin Cities. Certainly
    there’s boat traffic but not crazy like some lakes where it
    becomes almost a skating rink of boats going
    around in precession you know.
    So it’s a fun lake. There’s stuff
    going on but it’s not as busy and crazy as some lakes. We are now gonna head over to the golf course. Two courses, Alex
    Nine and the Lakes course and take a look at things out there, some
    fall colors and pretty scenes. The Lakes course
    is ah one of my favorite spots
    because it’s a lot of natural terrain and
    natural lakes out there, so. « motors rumbling» « motors rumbling» Get some footage of Aaron
    driving on the green. « chuckles» Evidence. « wheels rumbling» « wheels rumbling» « wheels rumbling» « wheels rumbling» ” ” ” Come up over the rise here and
    we’ll see hole number 18 that comes across Bass Lake. Kind of a tricky shot and I
    don’t see anybody teeing off so we’re OK. This is Bass Lake. Now the
    clubhouse here is…overlooks
    the 18th green and Bass Lake,
    beautiful view, people love to sit there
    and ah, have a cocktail and watch their friends try to hit ball
    across the lake. « Scott: Kinda looking for
    swans, if you see swans» Yeah I haven’t seen them lately
    but they said they’re out
    there.« Scott: Are those swans right over there» Maybe they are. Good eye, I think
    they might be up on land
    « Scott: Yeah» I’m used to seeing them
    floating on the water. We’ll probably scare them up
    when we go over there, we’re
    coming around that way. Tees right along the lakeshore
    here and then the pro tees are even on
    another spot and a little tougher to hit. It
    comes right next to Alex Nine. So, the two
    courses are easily accessible from the one
    clubhouse. « club striking» Our little friends, the swans,
    are right up ahead here by this little pond. « wheels creeking» Across this little bridge.« wheels rumbling» « wheels rumbling over wood
    planks» « wheels rumbling over wood
    planks» And just up over the rise is
    Goose Lake. A little bigger lake than the
    other one. Well hope we can preserve the natural feeling of
    this course. We have not built any housing on the course. So, like here,
    this is one of my favorite views of the whole
    course is across this number 15 green and looking out
    at Goose Lake fall colors coming out now. So
    we don’t have any housing units along the course
    and I’m hoping that we can keep it
    that way. It just gives it a natural wooded feel that you
    don’t see as much anymore. « Scott: With our tour
    concluded, we have visited ten resorts in
    Lakeland Public Television’s viewing area. Each has shared a
    brief glimpse to what makes them special.
    With so many activities offered. So many visitors from near and
    far. How has the resorting industry
    affected the culture of the northwoods» The resort
    business, and I know Grand View since
    I’ve been here this long, has had a profound effect on
    every element of our community. People, they come up and they have no other reason
    to come to Brainerd then to
    come up here and experience the lakes. What they
    end up doing then is buying a cabin on another lake.
    Um, they become long time summer residents.
    That moves into being up here maybe after
    they retire so they’re here all summer or they’re here half the
    year or they’re here all the
    time. We’ve had numerous instances
    where people have come to the area, stayed at one
    of the resorts and moved their business to the
    Brainerd Lakes Area. It’s added to the quality of
    life because as we’ve added more amenities the local um,
    residents take advantage of
    those. It has had a tremendous impact
    on the area over the years and
    that is that resorts themselves have grown and
    changed a lot. They’re not just fishing camps,
    now they’re more rounded and take care of
    families and a lot of different activities, and
    that. And the impact on the area has been big
    economically because it draws a lot of
    people from out of our area plus a lot of
    people from out of the state come in. And these people not only come to resorts but in
    time learn to love the area because of the beauty and so
    they in turn will build like summer cabins or even come up and live year
    round up here. So, the resort industry has helped
    add tremendously to the growth of our area. What
    I value about resorts in northern
    Minnesota is um, is the sense of community and coming up here and no matter how much your life has changed in
    everyday world, or in what you do
    everyday, you come up here and you know everyone and if
    you don’t know em you get to know em very quickly and so
    yeah it’s that sense of
    community. I have been coming here for,
    lets see 23 years. I started coming here
    when I was 12 years old so my parents came here and I
    have an older sister and two younger
    brothers and I was kind of at the perfect age to come here
    as a kid and just kind of went all the way high school
    through college and now I’m
    married and my husband comes now with
    us so. We come for two weeks, which most people
    only come for a week but we
    come for two weeks every year and it’s just
    knowing that you’re going to be able to relax and be at the
    same place, like I love the fact that you get up
    everyday and you’re like, “What
    do you want to do today?” “Well, we could go for a bike
    ride, we could go canoeing we could go kayaking. You want
    to go swimming?” And when you’re here for a
    chunk of time, you have enough time to just relax and sit by
    the lake and actually really enjoy what you’re doing
    and not feel so rushed. It’s just something you look
    forward to all year long, I feel like my year is broken into two
    halves. You’ve got the first part of the year
    which is you’re looking forward
    to Minnesota. And then the second half is
    Christmas and New Years, and that’s what break up my years
    and when you look for your time off. I picked this
    place this year over going to Sturgis. Because I thought it was going
    to be so packed with people being there
    being that it’s…was the 75th
    anniversary out there this year. I wanted to stay
    away from that. Again, you know, it’s
    getting out and being able to do some of
    the things you like to do and not feeling pressure to…of large groups of people.
    The people who come to the area have
    affected it quite a bit. The retail industry has
    grown immensely for a small town area. We have
    a lot dining we have a lot of attractions in
    the area a lot of golfing. There’s so
    many people that come, that is seems
    to be able to support all of these businesses during the peak of the summer. There
    is some winter businesses well it doesn’t compare to what
    summer businesses is, but a lot of people depend
    on the tourists. We really appreciate people coming
    to the area. Ah, I think sometimes people
    would wish the summer would slow down a
    little bit who aren’t directly
    involved with the tourism but they know
    that that is our life blood up here. There’s a
    lot of contractors house builders, people like
    that that are working on people’s homes in the areas who
    have in the area um you know, after being
    introduced to it, by a resort. My name is Dennis
    Stoye, we’re from McMillan, Michigan which is up
    in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. And so far we’ve been here a couple of
    weeks and it’s been very nice. It’s quite, convenient, with the laundry and the store because
    we stay in it once out of the year. Basically it’s for work. My…I’m
    retired, my wife still works and we travel where ever the work is for her. Well, I have two little dogs to
    start with which are in the camper now and you
    have your own it’s like your own home. When
    you’re in a motel room you’re confined. You can’t go
    outside and grill out supper or do you know the dogs have a place to run. I
    don’t like a motel room. I’m retired from staying in motel rooms. I like
    to have my house with me. Well it’s had a huge impact for
    instance here we’ve seen people come
    here and on rainy days they go to town, buy souvenirs,
    we all know that Bemidji increases its
    population in the summer time. We see
    people that came and vacationed here, moved our
    business to the area retire here, kids that come and enjoy the area here, go to
    college here, pick Bemidji as a college. We’ve had people that
    buy big ticket items, boats, cars,
    pickups and one thing about the resort industry, it’s a
    renewable resource. We sell somebody to view the the lake and the
    trees and next week we renew it and
    sell it to them again. So it’s a real renewable
    resource. Most of the lakes have been
    surrounded by private residents. So the resorts have done a
    great job of maintaining space for the public. Without
    the resorts there would be very
    little public access to the lakes, to enjoy our natural
    resources. So, I think the
    resorts play a particularly important
    role in that. Economically of course the
    Brainerd lakes area tourism is probably it’s
    number one industry. I don’t know what
    it’s added to the culture, I don’t know, it’s
    just we’ve used our lakes and I think we’ve tried to
    maintain quality lakes, it’s to our advantage to maintain
    quality lakes in Minnesota lakes. It’s a land of lakes,
    10,000 lakes I think we all are wildly
    interested in making sure we have quality
    water in our lakes because that is what really draws people to
    Minnesota to our resorts. Right now we’re
    in very good shape. Our Leech Lake Tribe and the community, we’re all
    working together and we’re doing things to
    promote good fishing and good reaction on the ah, lake area and that. And ah, things are going well on Leech.
    We’re having good fishing and good communication
    and that’s very important. My grandfather said something,
    he was standing up on the first tee and he said,
    “Look around the water that you’re seeing is
    far more valuable than oil will
    ever be.” And it’s the truth. We take a
    lot of pride in preserving our lake. We have
    what’s called “Green Way Program” here for our golf
    courses. And low and behold doing the old way of
    maintaining golf courses ah, the way they still do it in
    Scotland with very little fertilizer and
    it’s complex process that we won’t
    go into but it’s a far healthier process for the
    environment and low and behold it provides a better product
    for the golfer as well. Ah, golf has become a big
    thing. Ah, once golf started to grow,
    we saw a lot of people
    who…who…Brainerd was not on
    their radar in the past because golf
    wasn’t available up here. And I’m not talking about just
    resort guests but people who
    were looking for a place to retire. So, it
    became a much more desirable destination for people to
    retire to or build their summer house. You can draw very strong
    correlation between the expansion of golf in the
    area and the expansion of they
    year round housing market and the
    population in general. Golf was a real catalyst for growth in the
    Brainerd Lakes Area. Yeah, if you’re having an
    outing with your family, ah,
    you know relatives family reunion, ah a work
    outing, pick this place. I mean, it has
    everything. It’s got an
    incredible lodge with incredible meals,
    unbelievable golf courses the hospitality here is
    incredible, it’s outstanding.
    You know, we’re on a Tuesday ladies league so
    we’re here every Tuesday morning and there’s usually many more than us today but
    it’s like a great time to get together and walk the
    nine holes so it’s good exercise it’s good comradery, it’s a
    great place to go on Tuesday mornings and
    hang out with the girls. I think it’s
    about mental health ah, mental well-being and
    spiritual well-being, and not only
    physical well-being of getting
    off the grindstone of daily life but
    coming to a place like this. Nature is such a wonderful
    teacher. You can look at the ducks and a learn a
    lesson from them. You can
    listen to the loons at 3 o’clock in the morning and
    learn a lesson from them. I was speaking to one of my
    guests a few weeks ago, an
    educator, and we had this long
    conversation about nature being a teacher and he
    had related a story to me about how
    worried he was for his eldest son who had just
    gone off to college for a year and as is typical
    with that age kid, he didn’t really
    talk about how he was doing, they would
    call him up, “How you doing
    son?” “Eh, I’m OK, I’m good.” So of course this gentleman was
    really worried about his son,
    how he was doing. And at the end of the year come
    to find out this kid turned out to get on the Dean’s
    List. He had done incredibly well and he said he was here that
    morning watching the ducks, baby ducks hopping
    up on our little duck dock where we feed
    them everyday. And what he was noticing is that out of five
    baby ducks, two immediately jumped up on the dock and the
    other three were struggling. Could not seem to get up on the
    duck dock, just couldn’t do it.
    And what did mama duck do? Nothing. She just allowed her children to do what they did. Whether it
    was to succeed or fail. And he said, “That’s just like
    where I’m at, right now. I think I need to
    stop worrying about my children at this point. And there’s a
    little lesson for me in nature, you know.” I thought
    that was a good illustration of an example of what nature
    can teach us I value north central resorts mostly just how far they are north and just how you
    really have the northwoods feel here.
    And I also think the way Kim and Big John
    have really made this resort just very
    homey, you do feel like you’re at home. It’s
    always hard for me to imagine that there’s other people that
    stay in these cabins during
    other weeks. It’s like, “that’s our cabin!”
    You know, you get used to that
    and they really create a feel that you’re at home and it’s comfortable. And you think
    of this as being your place even though you’re only
    here you know a week or two out of the year but you know
    it’ll be here when you get back
    and you know you look forward to
    seeing everybody every year. It’s just…it’s a really good
    feel up here in general. And as far as, like,
    logistically just being this far north in
    Minnesota, the woods to me are just beautiful. You
    can always tell when you’ve crossed that half way point in
    Minnesota where you go from what looks more like
    plains and stuff to really deep, northwoods with tall pines and you can
    hear it in the air when you can smell it, you can
    hear the wind. It’s just a neat, really nice
    feel. We have a lot of traditions,
    actually on the way up here we kind of stop at the
    same rest stop on I-29 for lunch and we stop at the
    same place before we get here for dinner.
    And then once we’re here we have a family fishing
    plaque. It’s just a fun deal, who caught the biggest
    fish in the amount of time that we’re here? And that’s
    been some controversy over the years,
    even between family members where one thinks they got the
    bigger fish than the other one
    and ah, we don’t weigh anything, we
    just kinda look at it and pick a, a winner. But yeah, stuff
    like that I mean, it’s just little
    things. It’s something that everyone in the family looks
    forward to every year. I’m not sure if my dad touched
    on this or not but this resort in particular, it’s
    so old that when you look around, I always
    look around and think, how many different families
    have been here? And how many
    families have continued to come to this
    resort? I mean there are people that have been
    coming here for over fifty
    years, you know! We’re at year, I think, 23 now.
    We’ve been coming here for 23 years! And I sit there
    and think, that’s just a barely a drop in the bucket
    compared to some of these
    families that have been coming for so long. And I just think it’s incredible. This resort is
    really neat, 19 cabins. That’s a huge undertaking. And it’s just a beautiful resort.
    It’s well laid out and you think of how many memories
    have been made here, of my
    goodness! You know we enjoy fishing, we
    enjoy coming up here. We enjoy the family time. It’s
    the type of lifestyle that I remember as a kid. Maybe
    you’re trying to relive your childhood, I
    don’t know. But when people are
    up here nothing is locked. Everything’s
    open. You don’t have to worry about
    your neighbor. I guess it’s the
    way life should be or used to be at one
    time. And ah, we’re going to continue
    to do it as long as we can. And our families, we’re on our
    third generation now, actually
    fourth generation coming up here so. I think it’s
    really valuable and really works. It works out
    really well and I’m glad it’s a tradition that my siblings
    have wanted to carry on, too. You know that we can all still
    come up here as a family at least once a year,
    especially where we live in
    different states now. Um, it’s really something that
    I think is…will be good memories even
    for more years to come. Well this time I
    brought more of the family and
    grand children so it’s kind of fun to shut off
    the internet shut off the phones and that’s
    our tradition is just kinda getting away from
    stuff a little bit. Introduce some of the young
    ones to fishing and of course
    they like the water, they live in the
    water about half the time, so. Gosh, you know, that’s one of
    the things that has been nice, is that not much has
    changed for, in our experience. You know, we…the kids have
    changed of course and ah, and they’re ability to be out on the lake
    and has changed but the resort has
    stayed very much the same. Which is that consistency is
    something it’s been really good. Well, a
    big sense of nostalgic, um, like I said I’ve
    been coming up here my whole life for every summer.
    And so all of the experiences come
    back because this is the one place that sort of hasn’t
    changed that much in 30 plus years. Just being
    able to experience what I
    experienced as a child with my
    kids is ah, something that’s really
    special to me. I think that because it’s been
    around so long it’s something that is
    easy to take for granted that this is like a hidden gem.
    But it’s funny how many people I run
    into down in the Cities or even all over the country,
    that I’ll be wearing a Huddles shirt and somebody
    will come up to me and say that they’ve been to Huddle’s or
    their.. a relative has been to Huddle’s or a friend
    has been to Huddle’s and they
    had a great experience there. And so I just
    think the impact that this resort and small
    resorts all over have had throughout the
    country and throughout the world is
    under-appreciated. Most of my vacations, me and my wife’s are
    used to get away from people not bunches of people but
    that’s just us of course. I just like the family
    atmosphere. I don’t like the loads and loads of people.
    I don’t like to go to the
    waterparks and the amusement parks like some
    of the grandkids do. But I did have my grandson mention
    early just yesterday that this was the best vacation
    he’d ever been on. « water splashing» We have a lot of customer
    loyalty. The people came year after year. Ah, they’d have babies and the babies would grow up and
    they’d be coming, too. So, yeah we had a good repeat
    business. And the more we upgraded our
    cabins of course, the more they
    enjoyed it. So, it does become like this large family.
    It’s…it’s not just people
    coming and going and that they’re just
    strangers. They’re people that are coming back. They’re
    coming here for a reason.
    They’re coming here because this is where their
    families used to be. Their family used to know my
    family and it’s just kinda
    everybody kinda comes full circle. Hard
    for people to understand how not just the Cragun’s but every other resort operator
    that I’ve known in this state, I know a
    lot of them um dedicate themselves especially resorts, to either living at the resort or
    near by it. I have to say I
    don’t know anything different, I grew
    up in it but I’m sure maybe our kids could
    speak to that better. Providing for the public, what
    the public wants, when the
    public wants it is demanding. But I don’t think sacrifice would
    be the right word there certainly, I don’t…in
    our family we’ve had no
    sacrifices, it’s been nothing but fun.
    Obviously we’ve been here 42 years. So, certainly there are challenges. But the
    challenges the rewards of operating a
    resort and being a smile factory certainly
    out weigh any of the difficulties. I
    can’t imagine doing anything else. I can’t
    imagine anybody having a job that is as fulfilling as what we do. They want to feel validated. They want to feel like, “I mean something to…my money means something to these
    people.” And I think it’s up to us as resort owners and as
    people to make people feel like they’re
    special. and that the reason that they
    came here is a good reason. And that we really welcome them
    back and we’re you know, sincere about that. « waves splashing» « waves splashing» « waves splashing» « waves splashing» « waves splashing» Get outdoors. Take your kids
    and grandkids. Give them a chance. « waves splashing» Scott: Resorts Of The Northwoods was made possible by the
    Minnesota Arts and Cultural


    5-Year-Old Injured In Boating Accident Near Motley

    September 11, 2019


    Fish and Aquaculture –  America’s Heartland: Episode 914
    Articles, Blog

    Fish and Aquaculture – America’s Heartland: Episode 914

    September 1, 2019

    America’s Heartland is made
    possible by… Farm Credit –
    Financing agriculture and rural
    America since 1916. Farm Credit is
    cooperatively owned by America’s
    farmers and ranchers. Learn more at CropLife America –
    Representing the companies whose modern farming innovations help
    America’s farmers provide nutritious food for communities
    around the globe.  >>Hi, I’m Sarah Gardner. We take to the water on
    America’s Heartland this time for some unique fish
    tales and some recipes we bet you’ve never tried
    before. Call it a harvest in H2O. Come along as we go lobster
    fishing off the coast of Maine for a catch of
    crustaceans. But change is challenging
    these waters. We’ll take you to Arkansas. You’re hundreds of miles
    from the ocean, but fishing and aquaculture
    are playing a larger and larger role in the lives of
    American farmers. Sharon Vaknin is in the
    kitchen to give you some interesting ideas on fish
    for your family dinners. And we’ll head for
    Chesapeake Bay to see how oystermen there are helping
    to clean up polluted waters. It’s all coming up on
    America’s Heartland.   ♪You can see it in the eyes
    Of every woman and man♪ ♪In America’s Heartland
    living close to the land♪ ♪There’s a love for the country
    And a pride in the brand♪ ♪In America’s Heartland♪ ♪Living close
    Close to the land♪ ♪♪>>Some people might be
    surprised that aquaculture plays a role in America’s
    agricultural life. But if you think about it,
    harvesting a catch in fresh or salt water has many
    similarities to bringing in a crop deep in America’s
    Heartland. Aquaculture contributes
    to our seafood supply, supports commercial fisheries, and sometimes helps protect
    at risk species. And many American farmers
    supplement their income with aquaculture on their land. We’ll have more on that
    later. But let’s start in a classic
    waterside location. John Lobertini takes us lobster
    fishing off the coast of Maine, a location looking at change on
    the horizon. ♪♪>>Sunrise is a symbol of new
    beginnings but the start of this late summer day demands
    the continuity of a regimen that’s been the reality in these
    maine waters for generations. As the sun comes up the
    lobster fishermen of Swan’s Island head out
    to sea. Jason Joyce knows these waters
    well and realizes the work he does each day is part of the
    past… and the future.>>I’m hanging on to this and
    taking care of it for the next generation. My father took care of it
    for me, his father care of it for
    him, making sure you conserve so
    you have a fishery that spans, in my case,
    8-generations.>>In maine, lobsters are
    caught in traps or “pots” baited with fish to
    attract the crustaceans. Fishermen often work
    hundreds of pots a day. Lobster fishing though isn’t as physically demanding as it
    used to be. Traps are now pulled from the
    water by machine, instead of by hand. But what you haul up doesn’t
    always mean money in your pocket In Maine, size matters. This gauge determines
    whether you can keep a lobster or you have
    to throw it back. The head must measure at least
    3-and-a-quarter inches but it can be no longer than
    5-inches. And there are also rules for
    breeding females.>>This is a female.
    That’s got a notch in it. So we’re gonna let her go back
    and find her a new husband.>>Once secured, the catch must
    be safely transferred to market.>>I’m banding the lobsters. Trying to keep them so they
    don’t injure each other, um…
    in storage. It’s a live product that we’re
    sending that’s perishable and we want to make sure that they’re
    in as good shape as they can be.>>Environmental regulations
    and a myriad of laws at the state and federal level have
    impacted the industry here. Special rope and connectors
    for buoys and traps help protect whales in
    these waters- just one of the changes today’s
    fishermen now face. And those realities have
    prompted a move to diversify. The University of Maine
    Lobster Institute sees an opportunity to offer
    consumers more than just lobster tails- using parts
    that are usually thrown away. A lobster dog biscuit
    has been an early hit, but the shell may hold the
    most promise:>>We add shell material to, uh,
    to food products, in- in a very finely ground,
    um… like a flour. There are some animal studies
    that indicate that chitin, which is part of the
    shell does have the potential to lower your
    cholesterol.>>Professor bayer also points to
    early studies on antiseptic effects from the
    shells and possible benefits in treating
    osteoporosis. And there’s more. Hauling in the traps sometimes
    provides an additional catch: green crabs known for decimating
    clam populations. Graduate student Joe Galetti
    thinks this invasive aquatic species might hold potential
    as another food source.>>I think we’ve found a way to
    mechanically process these crabs and get some good
    nutrition and good mince meat from these crabs. Where as before they weren’t
    being used as a culinary delight. [Bells toll]>>All of these efforts may
    hold promise for this tight-knit island
    community. [Indistinct chatter] A community that pulls
    together. When 57 year old Spencer
    Joyce suffered a stroke, islanders kept his business
    going.>>So we all look out for each
    other. If someone is in trouble if
    there boat is having some trouble or something like
    that… you’ll team up and help them
    go through their traps. So it’s a good sense of
    community that you don’t see in obviously a lot of places
    in the world.>>Swan’s island is one of the
    most picturesque places in America. A place where the ocean’s
    bounty gives hope to those who work these waters.>>There isn’t any other fishery
    that I can think of that can sustain
    8 generations and still have someone make a
    living at it. Maine product is a good
    product. It’s a conservation minded
    sustainable fishery that a lot of other fisheries
    around the world strive to be. ♪♪>>Lobsters have been around
    for a long, long time. In fact, the snappy
    crustaceans have changed very little in the past
    hundred million years. In the water, lobsters can
    be blue, light yellow, green-brown, grey, orange or
    calico. Some even have spots. However, they all turn red
    when they’re cooked.>>There are many aspects to
    aquaculture in the U.S. Certainly fishing is both a commercial and recreational
    activity. That’s important to seaside,
    lakeside, and recreational river
    communities. I mentioned earlier that
    aquaculture also plays a role in improving the profit
    margins for American farmers whose land may be deep in
    the heartland. Let’s take you to Arkansas
    where research is underway to improve a particular kind
    of wet water crop. ♪♪ It may not be a location
    that you associate with a harvest that comes from the
    water. There are no boats heading
    for the ocean. In fact… you’re not likely
    to see boats or giant fishnets at all. The Aquaculture Fisheries
    Center at the University of Arkansas
    is focused, instead, on helping fish farmers raise
    better fish at a cost effective price.>>Aquaculture is a major
    industry in this state. Arkansas, first of all, is
    the birth place of warm-water aquaculture in
    the United States. The very first goldfish
    farms and minnow farms and catfish farms were here in
    this state. Today, the total farm gate value
    is about 167 million dollars.>>Thanks to a growing consumer
    demand for farm raised fish, aquaculture has taken off in
    many parts of the heartland. Factor in feed production,
    processing and equipment and the total economic impact
    for Arkansas’s Delta region is more than one and a
    quarter billion dollars.>>These eggs are moving right
    along.>>These small catfish eggs
    will be moved to a fish hatchery building for
    a few weeks, and then returned to the ponds until they reach
    fingerling size. Then they’ll be dispersed
    for various studies.>>We have a project that’s
    looking at additives to the feed that would then add to
    the fish flesh. Most of the experiments are
    management based experiments so that we can look at what
    a farmer needs to change on his operation to better his
    bottom line.>>A very different research
    project involves the alligator gar. It’s not being raised for
    eating, but for pest control.>>Missouri, for example, has got
    a problem with exotic fish and rough fish. And they’re interested in
    controlling them with a native top predator. And these guys, which get to
    be about 7 to 8-feet long, are a native top carnivore
    in the system.>>Researchers also want to
    improve levels of healthy Omega Three Fatty acids in
    catfish by including things like flaxseed in their
    diets.>>One of the problems, right
    now, with that product though, is that when you- when you add
    flaxseed oil, it does make the fish taste
    oilier. The catfish product that
    people like is a very mild tasting fish, and they
    really don’t want it to taste oily as a salmon or as a
    mackerel or something like that.>>The center also offers
    regional fish inspections at its four labs across the
    state. Farmers bring in fish which
    are then examined by experts. The farmers leave with
    advice on changes to improve their product and
    yield.>>There’s a constant networking
    going on between fish farmers. And sometimes, they hear
    things, and say “I’ve heard that this is
    fantastic and is it really and would you set up
    an experiment that will approve or disprove this
    idea that’s going around.”>>The facility you have here
    is unique not only in this country but in the world.>>Yes, it certainly is. There are very few places
    that have made the investment in these kinds of facilities here
    to do this kind of research.>>Mmhmm, and why is it so
    important to fish farmers throughout the United States?>>They have to have proof before they invest money on
    their farms. So, we have to run the
    trials here. Laboratory studies and model
    are fine, but they only go so far.>>Researchers also carry out
    extensive investigations on catfish production far
    afield from the campus.>>The fish raised overseas
    are raised under very, very different conditions. Quite frankly, they’re not
    held to the same standards as in the United States.>>Those issues of quality are
    critical as U.S. fish farmers compete for consumer dollars on
    a global scale meeting the demands of
    price, but also taste.>>So that what comes out on
    your dinner table is even better than- than what you might
    find on the river or in a lake. ♪♪ Some varieties of fish are
    excellent sources of Omega-3 fatty acids, salmon
    in particular. But nutritionists point out that
    Omega-3 can also be found in foods other
    than those with fins. They site tofu, flax, nuts,
    canola, and soybean oils as good
    sources. ♪♪>>There’s something fishy
    going on at your supermarket. Whether it is fresh, frozen
    or canned folks are buying more and more
    seafood these days, looking for source of low-fat
    protein. But knowing what type of
    seafood to buy and even how to cook it can be a
    challenge. ♪♪ Seafood generally falls into
    a couple of categories. It’s either caught in the
    wild, like a river or the ocean, or it’s farm-raised. Americans eat about 11 pounds of
    seafood a year, per person. And just under half of the
    seafood purchased is frozen. 34 percent is fresh and 23
    percent canned. And did you know that 86
    percent of the seafood we eat is
    imported? But many scientists are
    concerned about overfishing around the world impacting
    our ocean-life. With concerns about
    environmental impact and food safety on the rise you’ll
    find many stores offering labels on their fresh fish to help
    guide your buying decisions. So what’s the number one
    seafood in the US? Shrimp! Americans eat just over four
    pounds of it a year. Second place goes to canned
    tuna. And a relative newcomer is
    now in the top ten types of fish eaten – a fish called
    Pangasius! It’s a type of catfish
    native to Asia. ♪♪>>Do you include fish in your
    diet each week? We know that eating fish
    brings with it certain nutritional advantages. But, let’s be honest, some
    people don’t like the taste or just don’t know how to
    prepare fish in a manner that makes it attractive and
    delicious. Well, our Sharon Vaknin is
    in the kitchen with some recipes that just
    might change your mind about fish for your family. ♪♪>>Trout is one of the most
    delicious and healthier fish at the
    market. You can roast, grill or even
    fry them in no time and because they’re so inexpensive you can
    easily use it to feed a crowd. Today I’m making two trout
    dishes with the fresh and smoked
    variety. I’m making a smoked trout
    guacamole and roasted trout with an herby buttery
    filling. When you’re shopping for
    trout at the market there are a few things you
    definitely want to look out for. First, ask your fishmonger
    if you can smell the trout. It’s kind of funny but really
    important that you do this. So go ahead and smell it and
    it should smell slightly like a river or even like a
    light scent of cucumber. It should never smell fishy. That’s when you know it’s
    been sitting in the case for way too
    long. The second thing you want to
    look out for is the skin. The scales should look shiny,
    they should never look dull. And the last thing to look
    out for are the eyes. If you’re buying whole trout
    these eyes shouldn’t be cloudy, they should look pretty clear. If all those things look
    good you have fresh trout ready for
    cooking. Trout is actually part of
    the salmon family so you’ll notice it a lot of the
    similar flavors but it’s much more delicate. It’s nutty it has a mildly
    sweet flavor so it doesn’t need a lot of dressing up. The filling that we’re making
    today is an herby “garlicky” filling that really accents the
    trout’s natural flavor. So once our garlic is
    minced, we’ll put it in our mortar
    and pestle. I also have some red pepper
    flakes in there and now let’s mince our shallots. Now when you’re serving
    trout to a crowd of people you want to estimate about one six
    to eight inch trout per person. It’s more than enough. Now for the parsley we want
    a good handful. A little lemon, some capers
    for a salty “vinegary” flavor. And the last thing we’re putting
    in here is anchovy paste. We’re putting in just enough
    to bring out the flavor of the trout without
    overpowering it. So a couple of teaspoons is
    just right. Now we just need to season
    it. And the last thing? Butter. A this fish keeps pretty
    moist as it bakes, but butter never hurt
    anybody. We’ll reserve a little bit
    for the top before they go in. I already have four six inch
    trout on a baking sheet with a little bit of olive oil. So all I’ll do is open these
    up and you can see they have a beautiful pink flesh. So we’ll just flip them open
    and spoon in a little bit of the
    mixture in each. With all of these flavors you
    don’t need a lot of the filling. Now when you’re roasting the
    trout don’t remove the head and the
    tail. They’ll keep everything
    really succulent. Before these guys go in the
    oven we’ll put a little bit of butter on top of each. When they bake at a high
    temperature, which is what we’re doing,
    they’ll cook really fast. And then the skin will be
    nice and crispy. And here we go into the oven at 450 degrees for about
    ten minutes. While our trout roasts, let’s
    make our smoked trout guacamole. So for our guacamole base
    we’ll use red onion, garlic, salt, pepper, some of the
    basics. And then we’ll throw in a
    few ingredients that play really well with that smoked
    trout. Trout is so good for you. Because of its high amounts
    of Omega-3 fatty acids, but it’s also one of the
    healthiest fish out there. Because it’s low in dioxins which is an environmental
    contaminant. So now it’s time to take
    care of our avocados. When you’re shopping for
    ripe avocados for making guacamole,
    look out for two things. First give it a nice squeeze, it
    should be a little soft. And then push the belly
    button in with your finger and if it sinks, it should
    be good to go. I’ve got five large Haas
    avocados. When you’re shopping around
    for smoked trout, you’ll notice it’s a lot
    cheaper than smoked salmon. That’s because in general, trout
    is a lot cheaper to produce. And the reason is that most
    of the trout you purchase as the market is
    farmed. It’s not caught from the
    wild. In a controlled environment, you can really regulate the
    trout’s diet. That’s important for this
    fish because its flavor really reflects
    its diet. Let’s add some lime. We’ll also add some fresh
    minced garlic. Salt, pepper. Let’s have at it. The reason I don’t use a
    food processor is I don’t want “mooshy” guacamole. I want a few chunks in
    there. Our guacamole base is ready and
    now we can add in some of the bolder flavorings. So we’ll add in some roasted
    chiles. These are fire roasted
    chiles. And we’ll add in our red
    onion. And finally, the star of
    this dish, our smoked trout. And it will still have the
    skin attached. You’ll can easily peel it
    away. Just flake it into the
    guacamole by hand. And you can keep pretty big
    flakes in there because as you mix it, it will break up
    a little bit. There’s one thing I want to
    add. Fresh cilantro. That adds bright flavor,
    bright color and because of that lime, you don’t have to
    worry about this guacamole getting all brown before you
    serve it. If you were intimidated by
    cooking fish before, now you know just how easy
    it is to do. We’ve made a roasted trout
    with an herby butter filling and you can see the skin has
    crisped up nicely and I’ve served it with a side of
    potato salad. And, of course, our smoked
    trout guacamole. Two delicious dishes filled
    with Omega 3 fatty acids and… they won’t break the
    bank. ♪♪>>Let’s head for the waters of
    Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay for a different focus on
    fishing. Aquaculture can play a major
    role in supporting economic activity in a waterside
    community. But aquaculture can also
    play a role when it comes to improving the very water in
    which the fish make their homes. Chesapeake Bay is home to
    some 350 varieties of fish and improving the water
    quality there is getting some help from an unusual
    source. ♪♪>>Oh, I love it. I couldn’t see myself in an
    office.>>Kevin McClarren is a relative
    newcomer to Chesapeake Bay. He moved here in 1999. But this former
    Massachusetts resident says he’s fallen in love with
    this huge, historic estuary… and the famous oysters grown
    and harvested here.>>We’re about a hundred miles
    from the ocean here. We’re in a brackish
    environment where, from a biological
    standpoint, that’s where oysters want to
    live. You get this broth of
    minerals and flavors that produce an oyster with I
    think an exceptional flavor.>>Welcome to the farm…
    An oyster farm. Here, where the freshwater
    Choptank River flows into the salty bay… is where you’ll find Choptank
    Oyster Company. Kevin and his partners
    hand-raise close to two million oysters each year.>>I always say we’re a little
    bit more like ranching than we are like
    farming. We’re not really growing
    these oysters; we’re just kind of taking care of them till
    they’re ready for market.>>That care begins here at the
    hatchery… where the oysters grow from
    microscopic larvae into these tiny creatures called
    “spat.”>>They’re probably a thousand
    in this handful.>>That’s right what looks like a
    handful of wet sand is actually thousands of oysters attached to
    bits of broken shell. After about three weeks,
    they’re transferred onto these boxes made from window
    screens. They’ll grow to about the
    size of a quarter… and then be moved to these
    floats right on the bay… as many as ten-thousand
    in each one.>>We grow them for half a
    summer then we pull them out, we split them, tumble
    them, then put them back into bags
    at a lower level. And that process continues
    over two years until they’re large enough to
    harvest.>>The harvested oysters crop
    are then taken to a facility close by where
    they’re washed and packed into boxes
    destined for stores and restaurants all over
    Maryland.>>Let’s go home, Kevin.>>Let’s go home, Travis.>>Some customers like Travis
    Todd can’t wait for delivery… they take them
    right off the dock. Travis is the third
    generation of the Todd family at the Ocean Odyssey
    restaurant.>>What I really, really like
    about it is the fact that this is our local and native
    oyster, yet it’s being grown, it’s being grown rather than
    harvested in the wild. What we have is rendered
    bacon and keep the fat. You’re going to add to that
    fat, you’re gonna add onion and
    garlic.>>Today, Travis is making
    Oysters “Bubbafeller” a variation on the famous
    Oysters Rockefeller. Cracked pepper, lemon
    juice, heavy cream, arugula and parmesan cheese.>>As soon as you bread these
    things, you want to get them in the
    fryer.>>For something different, how
    about a po-boy. Shucked, and breaded, and fried-
    made from oysters less than an hour from the
    water.>>Ocean Odyssey is one of the
    local restaurants we have and he uses our oysters in
    everything. Because he sees the quality in
    it, and for him it’s worth it.>>Chesapeake Bay is one of the
    world’s largest estuaries. It’s two hundred miles long and as much as thirty
    miles wide. Fed by a hundred fifty
    rivers and streams. That mix of fresh and salt
    water proved perfect for oysters and
    oystermen… who’ve been reaping Chesapeake’s
    waterborne bounty for centuries. But in the last fifty years,
    population growth brought water pollution and
    disease. Today, the wild oyster
    population is less than one-percent of what it was
    in the late 1800’s. Twenty years ago, some six
    thousand oystermen worked these waters. Today there are fewer than
    five hundred.>>Oysters are considered a
    keystone species, which means it really is the linchpin for
    the health of the bay.>>Kevin says oysters are more
    than just a product, they’re an essential part of a
    healthy ecosystem.>>The guys that do this testing
    will tell you that an adult oyster will filter 50 gallons of
    water a day out of the bay. Filtering it, taking the
    algae out.>>Thanks to efforts by dozens
    of environmental groups, scientists, and government
    agencies, Chesapeake Bay is slowly
    getting cleaner.>>If we can get the oysters back
    to historic levels you would see the green color drop out of this
    water in no time at all. Every oyster that’s coming
    off my farm is one more wild oyster that’s left in place. It may take a long time, but
    it may work.>>The fact that we can grow
    great products like this, make them marketable,
    sell them and improve the water systems as we
    go along, um… that to me us just a
    win for everybody. ♪♪>>And that’s going to do it
    for this edition of America’s Heartland. We’re always pleased you can
    travel the country with us as we find fascinating
    people and interesting places.>>We’ve shared some great
    stories and great recipes with you on the show this
    time. If you missed something or
    want to check out videos from any of our America’s
    Heartland programs, just log on to our website
    at And look for us, too, on some of your favorite social
    media websites. We’ll see you next time on
    America’s Heartland.   You can purchase a DVD or
    Blu Ray copy of this program. Here’s the cost:   To order, just visit us
    online or call:   ♪You can see it in the eyes
    of every woman and man♪ ♪In America’s Heartland
    living close to the land♪ ♪There’s a love for the country
    And a pride in the brand♪ ♪In America’s Heartland♪ ♪Living close
    Close to the land♪ ♪♪ America’s Heartland is made
    possible by… Farm Credit –
    Financing agriculture and rural
    America since 1916. Farm Credit is
    cooperatively owned by America’s
    farmers and ranchers. Learn more at CropLife America –
    Representing the companies whose modern farming innovations help
    America’s farmers provide nutritious food for communities
    around the globe.   ♪♪  


    Gannets Diving for Fish

    August 31, 2019

    Perhaps no other bird masters air and water
    like a gannet! With a long narrow six-foot wingspan, a gannet
    can hover, glide, soar and dive, but it’s beneath the surface of the water
    that they really come into their own. With the Atlantic offering up such bounty,
    the constant fishing trips barely make a dent in the vast resources of the sea. The Vikings too only take what they need leaving
    the colony thriving and ready for the next harvest. In the 9th century, gannet numbers across
    the northern world may have run into 10s of millions. Individual colonies teaming with 100s of thousands
    of birds.

    Owner Of Brainerd International Raceway Dies In Florida Boating Incident
    Articles, Blog

    Owner Of Brainerd International Raceway Dies In Florida Boating Incident

    August 26, 2019



    When Fish First Breathed Air

    August 24, 2019

    385 million years ago, the land was all but
    empty. The continents were home to only some sparse
    plants and fungi, and a few pioneering arthropods. Life in the oceans, however, was booming. The waters teemed with squid, bony fish, and
    sea scorpions. But there was one group of fish that was about
    to go its own way. In time, these enterprising fish would undertake
    one of the most important journeys in the history of life. They’d follow in the footsteps of the arthropods,
    to become the first vertebrates to live on dry ground. But they couldn’t just move onto land. Not yet. First, they had to acquire the ability to
    breathe air. The giant leap between fish that breathed
    through water and fish that breathed air has been really hard for us to study and understand. That’s partly because the organs that did
    the work of breathing — either gills or lungs — don’t fossilize well. But it’s also because, until pretty recently,
    there just haven’t been a lot of fossils from that time for us to study. Fish began their transition onto land 400
    million years ago, during in the Devonian period. And for a long time, one of the few fossils
    that experts had to work with was a fish named Eusthenopteron, originally
    found in Quebec in the 1880s. It lived in shallow, estuary waters around
    380 million years ago. And like the famous Coelocanth, it was a “lobe-finned
    fish.” Instead of having long, delicate fins with
    lots of joints in them, like you’d see in a goldfish, its fins were shorter and stronger. These hardy limbs could have helped Eusthenopteron
    move itself along in the shallows as it hunted other fish, but its fins probably weren’t
    strong enough to let it walk on land. Another major find came about in the 1930s,
    when scientists uncovered Ichthyostega, a meter-long creature found in rocks in Greenland
    dating back 364 million years. Ichthyostega had a body that was a lot more
    salamander-like, including a fully-developed pelvis, strong limbs, and even fingers. But Ichthyostega still probably dragged itself
    around with its front legs, a bit like how a mudskipper moves today. And it also had a thick, paddle-like tail
    for swimming, which means it likely spent a lot of its time in the water. But perhaps neither of these fossils is as
    key to this story as Tiktaalik, a 375 million year old animal found on Ellesmere
    Island, Canada in 2006. Tiktaalik had a fishy body, but a head like
    a salamander’s, and stiff, leg-like fins that could have supported its weight outside
    of the water. And most importantly, it also had bigger primitive
    hips, so its hind limbs had something to anchor on to, an important step in becoming a
    fully four-legged animal. However, Tiktaalik’s travels on land were
    probably still stuck in front-wheel drive. Even though its legs and hips were bigger
    than in Eusthenopteron, they weren’t strong enough to bear the strain of walking on land. With traits that seem halfway between a fish,
    like Eusthernopteron, and a four-legged animal, like Ichthyostega, Tiktaalik is a textbook
    example of a transitional fossil from this time. And despite their differences, all three of
    these fossils are considered to be tetrapodomorphs, a group that includes early four-footed animals
    and the lobe-finned fish that are closely related to them. Now, one big trick to living on land, of course,
    is … breathing. So how did these animals, which had been adapted
    for millennia to life underwater, start to breathe air? Well, we know that all three of our friends
    — Eusthenopteron, Tiktaalik and Ichthyostega — had gills. Because, even though gills themselves don’t
    fossilize very well, the bony arches that support the gills do. And each of these animals had gill arches. But even though they still had gills, that
    doesn’t mean they couldn’t breathe air. It turns out that the most important clue
    for when fish started breathing air isn’t the absence of gills. Instead, it’s the shape and location of
    a little hole in the skull. This hole can still be found in many fish
    today. It’s the opening of a tube, called the spiracular
    tract, that’s used to bring water in toward the gills. This feature is really handy, because it allows
    fish to breathe when their mouths are busy eating. And this little skull hole can tell us a lot
    about when tetrapodomorphs first became able to breathe air. All you have to do is compare where it shows
    up in fossils, with where it appears in different kinds of modern fish. Now, in most modern fish, the opening to the
    tract appears on the sides of the face, near the front of the skull, which puts it pretty
    much right on top of the gills. But there are also fish today that breathe
    air. And in one of these fish — the bichir from
    Africa — the hole is bigger, and sits on the top of its skull, farther back, kind
    of like a blowhole. What’s more, the opening also sits at an
    angle, not straight up and down. That’s an important clue, because this angle
    creates a more direct path for air to travel to the bichir’s lungs. Now, compare all of that with the skull openings
    in tetrapodomorphs. In Eusthenopteron, the spiracular tract opens
    up near the front of the skull, just like in most water-breathing fish with gills. But, the hole is on the /top/ of the skull,
    not the side. In this way, it kind of resembles the bichir,
    which uses its head-hole to breathe air from the surface of the water. So Eusthenopteron was maybe breathing air
    in addition to water, and since the hole was close to the front of the face, they probably
    used their gills to handle both. But! In both Ichthyostega and Tiktaalik, that hole
    is much bigger, is closer to the back of the skull, and sits at an angle, just like it
    does in the bichir. This means the tract in these ancient animals
    was pointing right to where a primitive set of lungs would have been. It’s not the clear-cut evidence that a nice
    set of fossilized lungs would be. But having a larger passageway that sits closer
    to where the lungs are in today’s lunged fish is a good sign that both Tiktaalik and
    Ichthyostega had some sort of primitive lungs. As for where these lungs came from, experts
    think they derived from an organ that many modern fish still have today: a swim bladder. Swim bladders are often filled with air, which
    fish gulp down to help keep them buoyant. And the ancestors of Tiktaalik and Ichthyostega
    probably had them. The thinking is that, among some lobe-finned
    fish, the swim bladder became bigger and contained more blood vessels, so it became better at
    putting oxygen into the bloodstream. In time, this organ took on a different function,
    finding a new use for the air that was already there: breathing. This kind of makes sense if you look at air-breathing
    fish today, like the lungfish and bichir. Their swim bladders are split into two, and
    so full of blood vessels that they look basically just like our lungs do. But, why would any fish, modern or fossil,
    bother with breathing air, when there’s all that lovely water around? Well, during the Devonian, things were … complicated. And all of those complications led to a steady
    drop in the amount of oxygen in the oceans. On land, new plant species were diversifying,
    which you’d think would be good for oxygen levels. Except, all of these new plants were also
    dying on land, and then getting washed into the ocean. All of that organic material fueled huge blooms
    of algae, and then bacteria, which in turn sucked up oxygen from the ocean. So by the late Devonian – right when fish
    start to transition onto land – oxygen in the air was really low: some estimates go
    as low as 13%, compared to almost 21% today. For animals, low oxygen is generally bad. But for organisms that live in the water,
    it’s even worse, because oxygen concentrations are always lower in water than they are in
    the air. So when Oxygen levels first started to fall
    385 million years ago, the benefit of transitioning onto land was pretty clear – no more gasping
    for breath in the water. Being able to breathe air made Tiktaalik,
    Ichthyostega and maybe even Eusthenopteron more energetic and better able to hunt their
    food. And these first air-breathers eventually gave
    rise to the true tetrapods — the first vertebrates to live on dry land, full time. Eventually, they lost their gills. And by the time the Devonian Period had ended
    and the Carboniferous was underway, they had also lost their spiracular tracts, and started
    using a totally different kind of skull-hole for breathing, called nostrils. But those lobe-finned fish that were our ancestors
    weren’t the only fish that figured out how to breathe air. Today, there are lungfish, mudskippers, bowfin
    and bichir. They’re not direct descendants of the likes
    of Tiktaalik. Instead, they each acquired that ability independently,
    at different times. It just goes to show you that breathing air
    has turned out to be very convenient for a lot of us over time. So remember: For all of the breaths that you’re
    taking today, and the way that you’re taking them, you owe your fishy ancestors a debt
    of thanks. Thanks for joining me today! And I have big news! Eons is now on Patreon! Patreon is a voluntary subscription service
    that helps keep these videos coming. So if you’d like to support the show, head
    over to and sign up at any level you want! Now let me know what you want to learn about! Leave a comment down below, and if you haven’t
    already, go to and subscribe.

    Will You Still Eat Raw Fish After Watching This Video?
    Articles, Blog

    Will You Still Eat Raw Fish After Watching This Video?

    August 23, 2019

    Hey smart people, Joe here. What do poke, sushi and sashimi, and all these
    dishes have in common? They’re delicious. They’re made with raw fish. And they could all give you parasites. Yep. The ocean is a parasite playground. That warning about raw or undercooked fish
    at the bottom of every menu? It’s there for a reason. At least 15,000 different species of wormy
    parasites use fish as a host. Raw fish dishes like sashimi are, well…
    raw. They’re never cooked–which means any parasites
    or parasite eggs in the fish can end up in our tummies. In case you’re wondering, let me make this
    next part extra clear for ya: Parasites are so common in fish, if you’ve eaten raw fish
    more than a few times, you’ve almost definitely eaten a parasite egg. The real question is… did it hatch? [OPEN] Ok, so Anisakis is one of the parasites you
    could get from eating sashimi. One investigation found that 10% of salmon
    sushi sampled from Seattle restaurants contained dead Anisakis worms. Now, if that raw fish is treated according
    to regulations–previously frozen for at least 7 days at -20 degrees C — then the parasites
    and the eggs should all be dead. But that means you did still definitely eat
    them. If the fish isn’t frozen correctly or it’s
    eaten fresh, viable worms and eggs can make it into your gut. Like all parasites, these worms live in a
    carefully evolved life cycle: The eggs are released into the ocean through marine mammal
    poop, which are then eaten by crustaceans, which are then eaten by fish. When people eat this fish, we interrupt this
    natural cycle, and the nematode worm larvae can take up residence inside our throat, stomach,
    or intestinal lining instead. On rare occasions people report feeling a
    tingling after eating sushi–that’s not the wasabi people, it’s worms! Well, it’s probably wasabi. But it COULD be worms! Of course parasites don’t have to be worms,
    they can come in a ton of forms from microbes to ticks to plants to fungi. Humans have recognized the weirdness of parasites
    for a long time, from the ancient Greeks and Egyptians to the Chinese. The first written records show up on medical
    papyruses from ancient Egypt, and we’ve found parasite eggs in actual 3000 year old
    mummies. They’re even described in the Bible. The ‘fiery serpents’ mentioned in the Old
    Testament are thought to be an early description of a painful condition caused by Guinea worms. But back then “doctors” didn’t understand
    how people actually got parasites. In the 17th century, folks thought parasites
    just spontaneously generated in the human body because they never saw the worms go in,
    they only ever saw the worms come out–if you know what I’m sayin. Of course now we know parasites don’t have
    to go in as whole worms. You only need to eat their eggs. That’s how the life cycle of another ocean
    parasite goes: Euuuu’ve gotta be kidding me, I can’t say that name. THAT thing resides in salt marshes off the
    California coast. It gets passed around by three different hosts:
    Birds poop out the parasite eggs, and the eggs get eaten by horn snails. Then the parasite castrates the snail and
    reproduces inside it. Then, the parasite swims out of the snail,
    and into the gills of the unsuspecting California Killifish. It digs through the gills and into the fish’s
    head, where it weaves a little parasite carpet over the little fish’s brain. Killifish that are infected with parasites
    jerk around and swim near the surface of the water, which make birds THIRTY times more
    likely to snatch that killifish up for a snack than one that isn’t infected with parasites. The parasites are promoting their own survival…
    by getting the fish eaten. Finally, after the fish get munched, the parasites
    burst out into the birds’ guts and the cycle starts all over again. Now, that is the circle of life. Ok, so fish are one thing. But parasites are everywhere, land, sea, even
    air–they make up as many as half of all animal species. Scientists think more than 200 different forms
    of parasitism have evolved independently from one another. It’s difficult to even estimate the number
    of parasites on Earth because they can come in so many forms. From the beginning of multicellular life on
    Earth, parasites have been locked in quiet evolutionary arms races with almost everything
    living in their environment. Hosts and parasites always trying to stay
    one step ahead of each other. And here’s the thing: Even if you’ve never
    gotten sick from eating worm-infected sushi, parasites have impacted your life. Human DNA is full of battle scars from our
    species’ past run-ins with parasites. One of the most famous and nasty parasites
    out there is Plasmodium vivax, carried by mosquitoes, it’s responsible for millions
    of cases of malaria a year. Today, a whopping 99% of people living in
    sub-Saharan Africa have a specific type of a protein receptor on their red blood cells
    that doesn’t allow the parasite to gain entry. They evolved a natural malaria parasite defense! We think this change in the genome only took
    8000 years to become widespread in that region, meaning it must have been much easier to survive
    in the environment with that variant of the gene than without it. Parasites cause us harm, so the simple and
    obvious answer is that getting rid of them is a good thing, but biology is rarely simple
    and obvious. Preserving parasites could be more important
    than we realize. Let’s return to the California salt marshes
    and see what happens if we disrupt the parasite balance. Snails that aren’t infected reproduce super
    quickly. This could lead to fewer plants, fewer fish,
    less for birds to eat… by messing with a parasite, we’ve broken the ecosystem. This is important because parasites are actually
    at risk–climate change could cause the extinction of one third of them by 2070. Parasites are often gross, but they are critical
    to keeping balance in ecosystems–and we aren’t even close to knowing how diverse the parasite
    world really is. The conservation of parasites doesn’t inspire
    a warm and fuzzy feeling. But it’s just as important to the environment
    that we save not only the whales… but also the worms inside their guts. Sushi anyone? Stay curious.

    The Snail-Smashing, Fish-Spearing, Eye-Popping Mantis Shrimp | Deep Look
    Articles, Blog

    The Snail-Smashing, Fish-Spearing, Eye-Popping Mantis Shrimp | Deep Look

    August 21, 2019

    The mantis shrimp is a true heavy-hitter. Take this one. She’s about to devour this snail. But she’s gotta crack it open first. So, she carefully positions it… Then — BAM! — she punches it with the speed
    of a .22 caliber bullet. It’s the fastest attack in the animal kingdom. That’s one kind of mantis shrimp, known
    as a smasher. Here’s the other. This one’s called a spearer. Buried up to his eyeballs, he watches and
    waits. Then springs into action, impaling his prey
    on serrated blade with blinding speed, and dragging it beneath the sand. What makes these two so amazing isn’t just
    their speed. It’s their eyes. See those black spots? They’re like our pupils, where the light
    enters the eye. We humans have one in each eye. Each sends an image to the brain… and voila…
    depth perception. The mantis shrimp has six of them. Our vision: binocular. His vision: hex-nocular. For when accuracy counts. As for color? We’ve got 3 receptors, red, green, and blue. The shrimp has 12. Another world record. But there’s even more to this incredible
    eye. And it has to do with something called polarized
    light. Sunlight is messy. It’s a jumble of wavelengths, moving in
    all directions at once. But some surfaces — say the scale of a fish,
    or a pair of polarized sunglasses — have a way of changing the light, organizing it,
    so it moves in a single plane. We humans can’t really tell this is happening. But the mantis shrimp can make out where in
    the ocean light is being polarized and where it isn’t. Some mantis shrimp take this one step further,
    and produce their own special kind polarization. And they use it as a kind of secret code. See, mantis shrimp are incredibly territorial. They will defend a burrow to the death. But some, like our smasher, have a way of
    avoiding the fight. When he looks into a burrow, he can tell that
    another mantis shrimp has already claimed it, by the way light is hitting its body. That’s the secret code. Here’s how it works. Remember when I said that polarized surfaces
    organize light into a plane? Well these surfaces on the mantis shrimp make
    the beams of light circular, spinning through space like a helix. And as far as we know, only other mantis shrimp
    can can detect this with their eyes. You can see it here because we put a polarizer
    on the camera. So, these shrimp have taught us a thing or
    two. By reverse engineering the mantis shrimp’s
    eye into a camera, a group of scientists have begun to use polarized light to diagnose injuries
    and disease. This scanner measures polarization in red. See how this mouse tissue goes red when it
    stretches? Well, injuries to our tendons do the same under the scanner. So do some cancers. This endoscopy footage reveals cancerous cells
    hiding in plain sight by the way they react to polarized light. It just goes to show how we see the world
    differently when we look at it through another set of eyes. Hi, It’s Amy. I wish I could say that no snails were harmed
    in the making of this video. But a shrimp’s gotta eat. And so do we! So subscribe. See you next time.

    These Fish Are All About Sex on the Beach | Deep Look
    Articles, Blog

    These Fish Are All About Sex on the Beach | Deep Look

    August 20, 2019

    This baby fish is stuck. It’s ready to hatch, to swim out into the
    open sea. So how did it get here – stranded up on the
    sand? It all started two weeks ago, when its parents
    left their watery home for an adults-only beach party. During the very highest tides, California
    grunion ride in on the waves to get as high up on the beach as possible. The females start digging with their tails,
    burrowing down to lay thousands of eggs under the wet sand. The males cruise the beach, searching for
    females. Not super easy when you’re literally a fish
    out of water. When they meet up, the males wrap themselves
    around the females and fertilize the eggs. It’s a real scene… Then, when they’re done, they catch a wave
    back home. This whole awkward affair is risky for the
    parents – and for the eggs. Up on the beach, they’re all on their own,
    completely out of their element. But grunion eggs are tough. The outer membrane, called a chorion, protects
    them from drying out and keeps them from getting crushed. And that’s good because they’re going
    to be on the beach for a while. But that’s the whole idea. The ocean is full of predators looking to
    gobble up a tasty fish egg. Growing up in this sandy nursery gives baby
    grunion an advantage. Though nowhere is truly safe. But fish still need water, so these eggs can’t
    hatch any old time. If they did, they’d suffocate in the dry
    sand. So they have to time it perfectly, waiting
    for the gravitational pull of the sun and moon to line up, creating an extra high tide,
    which only happens twice a month. The baby grunion wait for the signal: the
    waves. The cold seawater jostles them, telling them
    it’s time to hatch. But the grunion still have to break out of
    their tough eggs before the tide recedes. So they release special enzymes from their
    tail that eat right through the chorion. They come bursting out. And swim for their lives, as the waves sweep
    them out, into the briny deep, where they belong. Hey. It’s Lauren. Looking for something to watch next? Check out Gross Science, also part of the
    PBS Digital Studios’ lineup, where Anna shows you the more adorable side of hideous parasites
    and unspeakable bodily functions. You’ll also love NPR’s awesome science channel
    “Skunk Bear”! This week, you can follow them into a cuddly
    colony of vampire bats. See you next time!

    Boating Safety Tips For Memorial Day Holiday Weekend
    Articles, Blog

    Boating Safety Tips For Memorial Day Holiday Weekend

    August 18, 2019