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Telemark Lodge: Rumors of Progres But Still No Money

Beautiful Telemark Lodge on a sunny winter day. Photo Credit: Travel Wisconsin

Rumors have been flying around all over the web in recent days about a deal being close at hand - for a new owner to be breathing new life into Telemark Lodge, built in 1947 by the legendary Tony Wise. 

According to the holder of Telemark's mortgage, Dick Short, no buyers have put down any cash.  On the bright side, there is still interest from several potential buyers with proposals in hand to buy or lease the property - but still no cash in hand.

Possible likely funding strategies include both private moneys as well as bonds from Bayfield County to secure the acreage surrounding the famed lodge.  This strategy could allow the county to focus on maintaining the land and world class trails around the lodge and a private party to maintain the lodge itself.

Most recently in March of 2009, Telemark Partners, LLC had reached an agreement to purchase the lodge and surrounding 1000 acres of trail covered land, but funding fell through.  Following this failed purchase offer, Telemark Lodge closed its doors on May 5.  Since then events such as the Chequamegon Fat Tire Festival, 24 Hours of Telemark, and the Birkie have had to cancel or drastically change their event due to the lodge being locked up.

There is no question that the resort reopening would be a great thing for the local Hayward area economy and for silent sports athletes.  In a recent interview with Tom Held of the Milwaukee Sentinel Journal, James Bolen of the Cable Area Chamber of Commerce commented that "It would be a boon to the whole region if it was fixed up and the doors were open".

We skiers will keep our fingers crossed!


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