Maple Ridge Resort
| Maple Ridge Area Attractions
Maple Ridge Resort is an ideal family vacation destination! Centrally located near numerous historic, scenic and cultural attractions the resort is the ideal location from which to explore our part of Minnesota.
With four 18-hole championship courses and several more nine-hole courses found within Itasca County, you are certain to find a tee-time to suit your needs. Very few northern resort areas offer the many choices we do. Area courses include a wide variety of golf to accommodate all skill levels. For the most enjoyable time, call ahead to set a tee time.
Finally, who says price doesn't matter? You'll find that Northwoods golf offers very affordable golf fees with some of the best values in the Midwest.
Golf Courses in Itasca County
Midway Bowling & Mini Golf located on Highway 169 North in Grand Rapids, Minnesota has bowling, a lounge, miniature golf course and batting cages. Fun for the whole family! Call 1-218-326-5950 for hours or for more information.
Rasley's BlueBerry Bowl located just north of Deer River, Minnesota on Highway 6 has 10 bowling lanes, the Lucky Strike Lounge and a large dining room. Visit their website for hours and more information or call 1-218-246-8048.
Blackduck Bowling Lanes located on Summit Avenue in Blackduck, MN is open to the public. Call them at 218-835-6620 for more information.
By bringing dance, theater, music and popular entertainment to its stage, the Myles Reif Performing Arts Center provides a stage for performing arts in Northern Minnesota. Completed in 1981, the Reif Center is also dedicated to providing dance instruction to both the serious dance student and the recreational student.
The Reif Center is located at 720 Conifer Drive in Grand Rapids - adjacent to the Grand Rapids High School. Click Here to see a calendar of upcoming performances where you can also purchase tickets online.
Located in downtown Grand Rapids the Mac Rostie Art Center is a gathering place where artists and community members can share in the belief that art is the heart and soul of a community. Open to the public Monday thru Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. visitors can view exibits, purchase work from local artists or participate in classes such as woodworking, pottery and watercolor. For more information visit their website at: www.macrostieartcenter.org.
Join the fun when the band plays the opening theme, a riverboat whistle is heard in the distance and the first glimpse of the Mississippi Melodie Showboat is seen around the rivers bend. Visitors are magically carried back a hundred years in time to relive the gaiety and excitement of the Showboat era on the Mighty Mississippi. With banners flying, paddle wheel churning and whistle blowing, the majestic Mississippi Melodie Showboat and her cast have been enchanting crowds in Grand Rapids for 50 years.
This vaudeville variety show is produced on the banks of the beautiful Mississippi River in Grand Rapids the last three weekends of July. This is one event you will make an annual tradition! For more information call (866)336-3426 or visit the Mississippi Melodie Showboat website.
Visitors will step back in time as they walk through a turn-of-the-century logging camp located in Grand Rapids. There they will find a camp blacksmith, saw filer, clerk, cook (often called a cookee) and lumberjacks at the state’s only authentic 1900s logging camp. During your visit, board the moored river "wanigan," a floating cook shack used when the logs and men headed downstream to the mills. Or, take a seat on the porch of a 1930s Minnesota Forest Service patrolman's cabin and hear about the ranger's important work protecting woodland resources. The more adventurous may climb the state’s only 100-foot fire tower with a live interpretive center.
A one-hour guided tour starts at the interpretive building. Whether on the tour or just wandering throughout the camp on your own, interpretive guides dressed in period clothing will encourage you to ask questions of the company clerk, bull cook (camp janitor), saw filer, lumberjacks, barn boss (who cares for the draft horses), the blacksmith and "wood butcher" (carpenter).
Each year thousands of children visit the Children’s Discovery Museum in Grand Rapids, which offers both permanent and changing educational exhibits. The new Children’s Discovery Museum opened in June, 2003 on Highway 169 South in Grand Rapids and is the perfect place for families with children of all ages to explore a mix of sciences, arts and humanities while sparking a joy of discovery about themselves, where they live and the larger world.
From April thru October the Children’s Discovery Museum is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m, seven days a week. From November thru March, the museum is open Friday and Saturday only from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $8 per person over the age of 1 through Labor Day. $3 per student school discount rate (for 20 or more.)
Birthplace of legendary actress Judy Garland, Grand Rapids now boasts the most extensive collection of Judy Garland memorabilia in the United States.
The new Judy Garland Museum, located on highway 169 South in Grand Rapids opened its doors during the 28th Annual Judy Garland Festival in 2003. The museum showcases memorabilia from Garland’s 45-year career.
Although there are thousands of items housed at the museum, one of the most popular items permanently on display is the Wizard of Oz Carriage, which carried Dorothy and her friends on the final leg to see the Wizard. President Abe Lincoln also was a passenger in the famous carriage. Visitors also may view Garland's Test Dress from the Wizard of Oz, A Winkie Sword from the Wizard of Oz, and An Emerald City Bell-Bottom Coat. "Over the Rainbow" was named the top song of the 20th century and visitors can see the "Over the Rainbow" Gold Record presented to Judy Garland as well as Judy Garland's Special Tony Award and a Microphone from Judy Garland's TV Show which are all on display.
Founded in 1975 by local artist Jackie Dingmann, the Judy Garland Museum® is one of the oldest museums dedicated to a celebrity in the nation. The new museum offers guests an opportunity to visit, in one location, both Judy's childhood home and a vast collection of memorabilia from her career.
Attached to the museum is the Judy Garland Birthplace Historic House, which has been fully restored to the 1920’s period and allows visitors to see what it looked like when Judy lived there.
The museum and home play host the most visitors from around the world each June during the annual Judy Garland in Grand Rapids. Many of Garland’s friends such as Andy Rooney, the Munchkins and June Alyson have come to the festival, as well as her children and former husband Sid Luft.
From November 1, 2005 through March 31, 2006, The Judy Garland Museum® is open two days a week -- Friday and Saturday -- from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The museum resumes a full seven-day schedule, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., on April 1, 2006 through October 31, 2006.
General admission for all ages is $8 per person during the Ruby Slippers exhibit, $6 after Labor Day. Age 1 and under free. For more information log on to: www.judygarlandmuseum.com call 1-800-664-JUDY or 218-327-9276, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Explore the people, places and resources that make up Itasca County history. The Itasca Heritage Museum captures the flavor of the turn of the century and the stories of the people, places, and resources that shaped this region. Come and explore with us the Woolly Mammoth during the Ice Age, marvel at the resourcefulness of the Ojibwe, the first inhabitants of this area. Wonder at the variety of cultures represented by the immigrants who came to the new country. See with the eye of a photographer (Eric Enstrom from Bovey, MN) who took the famous picture, "Grace". Discover how the Mississippi River allowed access to this great land that provided the nation with lumber and iron ore. Lean about the life of CK Blandin, his paper company that still operates today and his contribution to the paper and logging industry. And new to the museum is the Itasca County Barns exhibit which shows a nice collection of barns found throughout the Itasca County area. Each family barn has a written oral history and artifacts to go along with the photographs.
The Itasca Mercantile Shop at the entrance to the museum includes American Indian goods, old-fashioned candy, regional history books and Wizard of Oz Memorabilia. Central School, a restored grade school originally built in 1895, is now a unique market place which not only features the museum but Auntie Em’s Coffee Shop, a Stain Glass Shop, Yarnworks and other gift shops.
Judy Garland Exhibit: A Family Scrapbook.
Judy Garland was born Frances Ethel Gumm in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. During their 12 years in this area, the Gumm family operated the New Grand Theater. The story of this family of entertainers is what you will discover in the exhibit "A Family Scrapbook" which includes rare photographs, artifacts of her childhood, family life, and movie career. It's a must see.
The museum is located on the third floor of the Old Central School in Grand Rapids at the intersection of Highways 169 and 2. It is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday - Friday; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays; and on Sundays during the summer from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information call 218-326-6431 or visit their website at: www.itascahistorical.com.
Founded in 1901 in Grand Rapids, Blandin Paper became UPM-Kymmene's first North American mill in October 1997 and is one of northern Minnesota's largest employers. Its three paper machines have an annual capacity of about 515,000 short tons (463,500 metric tons), manufacturing No. 3, 4 and 5 grades of paper with basis weights ranging from 30 to 60 pounds. All paper manufactured by Blandin is lightweight coated (LWC), named for its clay-based glossy coating that makes it attractive as a publication paper. In 2001, Blandin's No. 6 coater set a 24-hour world speed record, attaining an average speed of 5,656 feet per minute. Blandin employees subsequently received UPM-Kymmene Corp.'s "Best Lightweight Coated Productivity Improvement Award" for 2001, placing first in the LWC product category and second among all of UPM-Kymmene's 35 publication paper machines worldwide.
Blandin Paper Company Quick Facts: Employs about 850, with another 2,000 jobs indirectly attributable to the company's local operations; annual papermaking capacity: 515,000 short tons; 2001 sales: $400 million, with an estimated $570 million total economic output; forest land owned and managed: 203,000 acres.
Free guided tours of the mill are offered on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 10 am to 3 pm, from the first Wednesday in June through the Friday before Labor Day. Tour guides escort small groups through the mill on a continuous basis. The tour also includes a video of the papermaking process. No children under the age of 12 are allowed, and no open-toed shoes or cameras are allowed. Please note that the ability to climb some stairs is required, and the paper mill is very warm. For more information contact Blandin Paper, 115 SW First St., Grand Rapids, MN 55744 or call 218-327-6302.
For family fun down on the farm visit Nordic Ridge Gardens in Bovey. From late June through late July Nordic Ridge Gardens is known for the succulent berries it produces on the largest strawberry farm in the county. The farm offers berry pickers and buyers 10 acres of berries and provides picking containers and berry boxes, a playground, picnic areas, and restrooms.
June and July in northern Minnesota mean succulent strawberries and blueberries. Pick your own or buy them fresh-picked!
Blueberry Meadows - 34471 Eight Mile Road, Grand Rapids, MN, 55744. Phone: 218-326-0671. Directions: travel south of Grand Rapids on Highway 169 to Eight Mile Road. Pick-your-own blueberries beginning the last week in July.
Discover the history of mining on the Iron Range, vintage machinery and the beauty of scenic overlooks at the Hill Annex Mine, the world's largest open pit mine that is open for tours.
Located in Calumet, Minnesota, just off Hwy. 169 (halfway between Grand Rapids and Hibbing) the history of Hill Annex dates back more than a century. The land was originally leased for mineral exploration in 1892. It was leased again in 1900 for a period of more than 50 years. Mining began in 1913 and continued until 1978. Hill Annex Mine produced 63 million of iron ore during its 60 years of operation. Throughout that time mining technology changed drastically. In the early days, horses provided the power. Eventually steam and then electrical power replaced the horse-drawn equipment. When the high-grade ore finally played out, the mine was sold to the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board (now Iron Range Resources) for $1. The IRR developed the tour route, the clubhouse into a museum/visitor center, and gave tours of the mine for 10 years. In 1988, the State Legislature made Hill Annex Mine a state park. It is now a national historic site.
Scarce iron deposits may be left behind, but abundant wildlife and vegetation now fill the scarred landscape. The park is a release site for peregrine falcons and home to bald eagles, bear, timber wolves, deer and other wildlife. Trees and plant life have come back to vegetate the area as well.
Three different 1 ½ hour tours conducted at the mine illuminate the history of open pit mining on the Iron Range. The Mine Bus Tour takes visitors (in a fully air conditioned and handicap accessible bus) along scenic overlooks stopping for up close viewing of vintage mining machinery and buildings. The Boat Tour takes visitors to the open water of the Hill Annex Mine, which for 60 years was the sixth largest producer of iron ore in the state. The Fossil Hunting Tour takes visitors to the Cretaceous Ore Pile to hunt for 86 million year old sea fossils.
Tours are conducted Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The Mine Bus Tour begins at 10:00 a.m., the Fossil Tour at 12:30 p.m., and the Boat Tour at 3:00 p.m. All tours are 1 1/2 hours long. Tour busses and facilities are handicap accessible. Museum, gift shop and observation deck are all open year round. Club House/Museum Hours: Memorial Day to Labor Day, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Mon. - Thurs. 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., Fri. - Sun. Labor Day to Memorial Day, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Mon. - Fri. Times may be subject to change due to budget cuts so call for current hours. For more information call 218-247-7215.
Located in northern Minnesota between the cities of Grand Rapids and Ely, the Mesabi Trail is a premier Minnesota bike trail winding through some of the state's prettiest regions. When completed, the trail will traverse 132 miles and connect more than 25 communities. A superior paved bike trail that is well-mapped and well-maintained, the Mesabi Trail also makes an interesting walking path. In 2005, 97 miles of trail were planned to be complete and offer convenient accessibility at numerous entry points. The longest paved sections connect Nashwauk and McKinley (51 miles through the communities of Hibbing, Chisholm, Mountain Iron and Virginia), and Grand Rapids to Scenic Highway 7. An additional section of trail between Marble and Pengilly is scheduled for completion in 2006. Once completed, the Mesabi Trail will be one of the longest paved trails in the United States. The trail head is located at the Itasca County Fairgrounds in Grand Rapids.
The Taconite State Trail stretches 165 miles from Grand Rapids to Ely and intersects with the Arrowhead State Trail just west of Lake Vermillion. The trail head is located at the Itasca County Fairgrounds in Grand Rapids and the first 6 miles are paved for biking and in-line skating. The remainder of the natural surface trail is used primarily for snowmobiling in the winter. The trail goes through a few areas that have standing water in the summer, however portions of the trail are suitable for horseback riding, hiking, and mountain biking.
Take the afternoon to drive and enjoy the 47-mile Edge of the Wilderness Scenic Byway that meanders from Grand Rapids north to Effie on Minnesota’s State Highway 38. The region is studded with lakes and thick with aspen, birch, pine and maple trees that pop with color in the fall season. The road winds around 36 lakes, and through state and national forest. The Chippewa National Forest is home to the largest population of bald eagles in the continental United States. Keep your eyes on the sky to see them soaring above the byway. White tailed deer also are known to graze in the fresh grasses along the side of the road.
Thought to be underwater as part of Coddington Lake, a survey mistake in 1882 saved the land of the Lost Forty.
The Cut Foot Sioux Ranger Station, which was completely restored over a period of four years between 1994 and 1998, is the oldest remaining ranger station building in the Forest Service’s Eastern Region. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, tours are arranged through the Cut Foot Sioux Visitor Information Center.
Trout Lake Semiprimitive Non-motorized Area and the Joyce Estate offer 6,000 acres of forest with 26 miles of shoreline on 11 lakes. Ten miles of old roads and trails provide for hunting, hiking or skiing. The rolling terrain provides scenic views over area lakes wrapped with maple, aspen, birch and scattered pine. Click Here for map.
In the 1880s, William T. Joyce came to the area and started buying land and timber. The area was logged in the early 1900s and the logs were floated out through the chain of lakes to the prairie river and then to the Mississippi River. About 1918, the heir to the family fortune originating in lumber taken from northern Minnesota, David Joyce of Chicago, surveyed the area around Trout Lake with the intention of building a hunting camp. Over the next 17 years he built a 4,500 acre private resort with 40 buildings, a golf course, private telephone line and airplane hangar. The Joyce Family called this place "Nopeming" (meaning place of rest in Ojibwe). The estate operated as a plush private resort for the Joyce Family until 1972 when it was sold to the Nature Conservancy. The Forest Service subsequently acquired it in 1973.
Visitors can tour the grounds of the Joyce Estate and view the rustic log architecture and stickwork characteristic of the Adirondack tradition. The Joyce Estate is located 13 miles north of Grand Rapids, one mile east of the intersection of County Road 60 and State Highway 38.
The remote setting of the Suomi Hills semiprimitive nonmotorized area is made up of rolling hills, clear lakes and some of the most spectacular fall color in the area. There are 21 miles of trail, numerous small lakes and several primitive campsites for day or overnight hiking, biking, skiing and canoe trips. The rolling topography offers cross country and mountain bike trails for intermediate and advance skiers and bikers. The trails are groomed and track-set in the winter and mowed in the summer.
North Suomi Hills is the site of the Day Lake Civilian Conservation Camp (CCC), which became a prisoner of war camp during World War II.
Suomi Hills is located 14 miles north of Grand Rapids on the Edge of the Wilderness Scenic Byway (State Highway 38).
Itasca County is an idyllic destination for canoeing enthusiasts.
The Big Fork River flows north to the Rainy river. Most of the river is easy to canoe with several areas of Class I rapids. There are two spectacular water falls that need to be portaged by all but the most experienced paddlers; Little American Falls (Class III-IV) and Big Falls (Class IV-VI).
From Cass Lake to the Vermillion River, this segment of the river consists mostly of marshlands. The area has a rich history and provides great opportunities for viewing wildlife. Paddling skills for marshy areas and for making sharp turns are needed for this stretch of the river but no special skills for paddling through rapids are required. This part of the river is among its first 420 miles which is denoted as the Mississippi Headwaters River Trail.
Recreational canoe enthusiasts enjoy the Prairie River. Much of this stream is located in Savanna State Forest which was once part of an important portage route during fur trade era.
Bigfork River Canoe Outfitting located at the junction of Main Street & Highway 38 in Bigfork, MN offers canoe rental and shuttle service as well as tents and other camping gear. Also serves Rice River. Call 218-743-3274 for more information.
God's Country Outfitters located on Highway 38 north of Grand Rapids rents canoes and equipment.. For rates and reservations call 1218-326-9866.
The year is 1798 and the fur trade is booming in the upper reaches of the Mississippi River in the northwoods of Minnesota. Minnesota will not actually become a state for another 60 years but today the Norwesters, gentlemen, traders and Anishanabe are all gathered for the annual rendezvous at the White Oak Fur Post.
Located on 122 acres surrounded by forestland the MSSEC is open to the public for educational training, train the trainer programs, 4-H Shooting Sports, NRA programs, Youth Firearms Safety, Minnesota Advanced Hunter Education, and supervised recreational shooting. The twelve lane, 50-meter range provides shooters with state-of-the-art equipment and educational facilities. MSSEC specializes in airgun, archery, and small bore rifle, although the range can handle handguns up to 50 calibers. The outdoor 3-D archery range is realistically situated in a wooded setting with hunting style shots from elevated stands, ground blinds, and even an African game at a water hole. Beginners and experienced shooters both benefit from MSSEC's firearm rental program which allows shooters to try a variety of firearms before making a purchase. A visit to MSSEC makes a great side trip for vacationers or business travelers.
The USA Olympic Shooting team coach, Dan Durben, after training with the Olympic rifle team, proclaimed MSSEC one of the finest shooting centers in the nation. The MSSEC is located at 483 Peterson Road in Grand Rapids and is open to the public. To schedule a visit or for more information visit their website at: www.mssec.org or call 218-327-0583.
Pheasants Plus offers a fun and challenging 50 target Sporting Clays course and new five stand course. Friendly atmosphere and handicapped accessible clubhouse welcome shooters of all skill levels. Clothing, ammunition, and supplies available on site. Guided pheasant hunts are a popular outing and should be booked in advance to ensure availability. Dogs are available on site or you are welcome to bring your own dog. The preserve is open to the public but hours vary by season. In the summer the preserve is open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4 p.m. to dark and on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to dark. Pheasants Plus is located at 14893 Sago #4 in Warba, Minnesota. For more information log on to www.pheasantsplus.com or to make a reservation call 218-492-4450.
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