Fire Update December 15th Entry

It has been two months since a fire broke out in the main lodge at Maplelag, resulting in a complete loss of the building. It continues to be hard to believe as we adjust to the major change in our lives. Our thoughts and prayers go out to our staff and all those that grieve with us. This weekend would of been our opening weekend with our first ski camps. It is a big adjustment for our staff not to be servicing all our wonderful guests and we are keeping you in extra thought and prayer as well as our guests that are not able to come. Thank you for continued support of love, prayers, donations and contributions in so many ways. The act of giving during this Christmas time is putting us at loss of words and we are so grateful for the continued outpouring of support.

“Paris” building at the French Village.

Last week, Jay and Jonell took a trip to Bemidji, MN. to visit the Concordia Language Villages (CLV) permanent language learning sites or “villages”.

Norwegian log cabin Jay lived in the summer he was a head cook at Norwegian camp. Jonell might of visited once or twice.

CLV is recognized as one of the top language immersion programs in the country, with a mission of being “builders of globally minded communities and guides to world fluency”. We highly encourage parents of children to consider attending a summer camp. Each village gives a sense of the representing country. Maplelag has a long lasting relationship with CLV going back to the late 70’s when Jim and Mary visited with directors about building a lodge to host languages camps. These conversations would come to fruition and a big reason the first lodge, that was lost to a fire in 1999, came to be in the late 70’s.

French kitchen. Thanks Francois for the fresh bread!

Since the late 70’s, Maplelag has hosted many different “villages” including Russian, Swedish, French, Finnish, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and most recently, Chinese. The Maplelag family, have not only attended villages but Jay and Mary were head cooks at numerous sites including Swedish, Russian, Norwegian, Chinese and Japanese. With these experiences and the hundreds, if not thousands of relationships forged, you can see how the Concordia Language Villages has been a huge part of our lives and we would not be where we are today without them. Their operations are very similar to Maplelag and we’ve had many conversations with them on how to deal with critters, septic tank, food service industry etc.

Thanks Warren and Pat for sharing plans and knowledge!

The trip to Bemidji saw us visiting all the villages, focusing on the main buildings that serve as dining rooms and looking at all the kitchens including the older facilities and the most recent ones. We want to thank Warren for taking the time showing us each facility as well as Patrick sharing his information.

Finnish main lodge.

Our thought process at the moment, if we are to rebuild, would be keeping CLV in mind, just like the first lodge was built, to continue the special partnership moving forward or into the future.

Russian main lodge.

Last week we also hosted our first Nordic Ski Meet of the year and possibly the first one on natural snow in the country! It was so good to see familiar faces and have the trails buzzing with the energy of the kids. It really was a magical day with fresh snow falling in the morning leading to sunshine in the afternoon. The growth in high school Nordic skiing is very encouraging with even more teams being added including Wadena/Deer Creek. Thanks Terry for the opportunity to work with the kids. We are always willing to volunteer our time to help out any youth, as time allows. Please reach out in advance. We are looking forward to hosting our next meet on January 3rd for JV and Jr High skiers, the long running DL Invite mid January and the Sectional meets in early February.

Girls Varsity, early season ski meet December 6th, 2022.

Finally we want to give a special shoutout to Krolls Zuckerwald and John and Susan for making a special delivery of multiple cases of their pure maple syrup. Maplelag serves pure maple syrup with many entrees but among the most loved was the Norwegian Pancakes. We have a few pints for sale if anyone is not able to find this delicacy in local markets.