Crane Lake Township

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10/2/14 Public Meeting








October 2, 2014






The October 2, 2014 Public Meeting was called to order by Clerk Jo Ann Pohlman at 7:30PM at the Crane Lake Fellowship Hall with the Pledge of Allegiance recited by those in attendance including:  Facilitator Mary Somnes, Township Lobbyist Gary Cerkvenik, Clerk Jo Ann Pohlman, a reporter from the Cook News-Herald, and 20 members of the community.




Jo Ann introduced meeting facilitator Mary Somnes from the IRRRB and turned the meeting over to her.




Mary explained that she was with the Tourism Program at the IRRRB and that she assisted with the 2006 Crane Lake Community Action Plan.  She explained that the purpose of the meeting was for property owners with parcels that they wished to be considered for the NVP Visitor Center/Campsite to share with the community the reasons why their property would be the best option for Crane Lake.  Each property would be discussed by the community, listing pros and cons.  The resulting information would be given to the VNP.




Her agenda stated the following: Every contribution is worthwhile.  This is collective creative thinking.  Suspend judgment; we won’t evaluate each other’s ideas.  We are gathering information; we are not going to make a decision.




The back of Mary’s agenda included notes from the 2001 and 2006 Crane Lake Community Action Plans.  A Park Visitor Center was not included in the list of top five priority projects in 2001; however, it was in 2006.




Property owners then shared why their property would be the best option for the VNP Visitor Center/Campsite.  Community members discussed pros and cons for each property represented.  It was noted that Superintendent Mike Ward had looked at a few properties and that he knew of several more interested parties.  Only two properties were represented at the meeting.  The results of the meeting were as follows:




Crane Lake Shores Development- Braaten Property


34 Acres


375 feet of shoreline




Some wooded areas some open areas




On mainline sewer


Frontage on Gold Coast Rd (main road in town) and Bayside Drive


Electric on property


Willing seller


Dock System


Near other facilities- church, fire department and several businesses.


Near hiking trails


Water lines on the land


Sewer lines on the land and a grinder station


Well on the property


House on site


Metal Shed on the property


Roads are on the land


Close to State Landing




Pros and Cons Crane Lake Shores Property


-keeps everything in condensed in town rather than expanding.


+walking distance to town and boat landing


+best property


+people will come around corner and see a beautiful facility


+see welcome to Crane Lake at arrival and see the town


+agree with others and near the State Property


+largest portion of land and proximity to town


-launch site is not optimal and more traffic on the bay


+great location and enough acreage


+agree huge plus to the town


Town of Crane Lake Public Meeting Minutes – October 2, 2014 Minutes – October 2, 2014




Pros and Cons Crane Lake Shores Property (Cont.)


+two road access options, right down from the boat launch, dock system, the visitor center should tell the history of the area, much land


+connected to main sewer, help the rest of the town, good exposure.


+ample acreage


-lack of shoreline


+southern entry to the VNP, Visitor center and RV Park


+good location, against the government buying private owned shoreline/property


+great location, entrance to Crane Lake, dedicated road


+infrastructure already on the property


+property in limbo/stagnant, private parties cannot afford to develop the property. Government funding to develop the property to potential. Best location.


+tax dollars not needed to improve road. The tax dollars can be used to add trails in town. Good location. All the items listed in the features of the property.


+campers go to visitor center to see what to do


+we should see what the customer wants, make it comfortable for the visitor


+will help sewer district, will help my business, greater opportunity to help more business.


-visitor center should have view of park, this one does not




Nelsons Resort


Listed for sale


1000-1100 feet of shoreline


10+acres surveyed


electric, private sewer close by (borders)


no dock system


undeveloped land


surveyed for a road


private road needs upgrade




Pros and Cons


+best view


_best exposure for community s/b on the west side of town


+better view, what the park wants-other centers removed from community


-proximity to town and cost


+best place for customer


+RVs may not come to Crane Lake with gravel when other entry points have blacktop. Only one bar, restaurant, gift shop in walking distance. More services on the other side of the lake.


+different RV’s in town and not in town and both are successful. Most RVs stay put when they set up.


-driving to Nelsons less appealing then going by boat.


+closer to my business, road would be paved and it would be upgraded


+expand community, great view


-too far out of town to see it


-too much expense


-expensive, long road, traffic not in town


+great view


-road is long, they would collect their stamp and not stay because they would not see the town. Other visitor centers are not in town. (Kab, Ash, Rainy) different.


-not hooked into city sewer


-not hooked into city sewer and they would take stamp and leave town.


-long road, dirt road, long ride for a mom with kids.


+it has all been said, good view, is it too quite? What are visitors looking for?


+great view, ample shoreline, acreage, if you have traveled across the country 3 miles is not a long distance. Visitor coming to see VNP and look for visitor services in broader parameter than Gold Coast Road.












Town of Crane Lake Public Meeting Minutes – October 2, 2014 Minutes – October 2, 2014






DNR Property


No support for this parcel alone -only in conjunction with other properties


+could be combined with Braaten/Crane Lake Shores Property and have and beach, lake views and lake access


-not connected to town by itself


-10 comments that the property is to small for a visitor center and camping


-the road is terrible


-3 comments there is no access to town from this property


+infrastructure exists


2 comments If the DNR has funds reserved for the property they need to use it here.


VNP/DNR together with a connector






What Crane Lake wants in the Visitor Center


It is agreed that Crane Lake does not want a one room visitor contact center. They want a large, National Park Service quality, year round, history, community and park visitor center.


Included items should be:


Key things about the park like they have on their website


BWCAW gateway- work with the USFS


Classroom facilities


Meeting room open for public use.


Staffed facility


Area information as well as park information- nearby hiking, etc. that is not in the park






Other Notes From the Meeting


The Park has an obligation to have a presence




Community should have a say in where




Mike has talked to people with properties




DNR boat landing is a option- should NPS acquire this land? 4.5 acres 600 feet shoreline?




Private parcels are unused- campground will bring money.




Visitor Center should attract people




Is end of the road a good place?




Offer more info and more- museum




Lease or rent the land to the government rather than buying.




Park should collect lodging tax and give to Visitor Bureau




Short Term RV not seasonal.




Should not be a business that is in competition with the business in town.




Tent campers might prefer out of town.




Maximize outside help with vision for community




Need more detail from VNP about what this looks like we want 1st class




Depends on how they use it-should bring revenue to the community




Visitor Contact Area


Town of Crane Lake Public Meeting Minutes – October 2, 2014 Minutes – October 2, 2014






Other Notes From the Meeting (Cont.)




Boat launch at Crane Lake was high priority for DNR




DNR should develop property with General Funds, Legacy Funds




Sewer system revenue




Need restrooms at the site




People can talk to elected officials about funding




Department of Interior and Agriculture have land and peninsula to develop a facility for the SNF and VNP.  This was discussed and 17 people voted no for this idea, there was no show of support for this idea.


There was no support for the Gorge location.


There are other lands available in township and public ownership.




Not sure if VNP is looking to purchase property for partnership with someone




Lease deal would be best since it stays on the on the tax rolls.








The community thanked Mary Somnes for facilitating the meeting.






The meeting was adjourned at 9:30PM












Jo Ann Pohlman, Clerk






































This draft of the CraneLakeTownship minutes has been posted solely for preliminary informational purposes.  Minutes are unofficial and subject to change until they have been approved by the Crane Lake Board of Supervisors.