BLACF Hosts State Of The Lakes Area In Crosslake
Some big things are happening in the Crosslake Area. In order to fill residents in, rear-round and seasonal alike, an event was held at the Crosslake Community Center on Friday, the Crosslake State of the Lakes Area.
“What we’re trying to do is create a sense of welcoming to our seasonal residents and inform them of all the great things we have available up here in the lakes area,” said Karl Samp, Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation Executive Director.
The Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation wanted to put on the State of the Lakes Area event in order to share local economic development, health and medical services, entertainment, the health of the Whitefish and area lakes, and philanthropy opportunities with area residents.
“We’re hearing about the National Loon Center, about the various healthcare options, the state of the lakes through the lakes association, WAPOA [Whitefish Area Property Owners Association], things related to the arts, athletics, and lifelong learning opportunities,” Samp explained.
Speakers included representatives from CLC, Essentia Health and Cuyuna Regional Medical Center, the Crosslake Community Center, and the new National Loon Center.
“It’s exciting. There are several initiatives going on right now. One is the fresh water initiative to help protect shorelines and habitat. The other is to educate and allow people to understand more about the loons,” said Kris Kristufek, who is on the Scientific Loon Council for the National Loon Center.
The National Loon Center will be a leading research, recreational, environmental, and eco-tourism attraction dedicated to Minnesota’s state bird, the loon.
“I think the Loon Center is something that people are very excited about. Having this potential draw of the Loon Center here and to learn about loons,” Samp said. “People are fascinated by loons around here.”
The National Loon Center is currently in the planning and fundraising stage. It will be located on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers campground in downtown Crosslake.
“It’s going to be a complete economic boom for the Crosslake area. This is going to be the National Loon Center and it will be a shining star for our entire area,” said Kristufek.”It will bring a lot of people into the area.”
If the National Loon Center is able to meet their fundraising goals, they hope to start construction as early as next year and be open in the year 2022.