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Crew restores historic icehouse on Lake Superior


From left: Corps members Nick Cox, Christina Schaufler, Nai Yang, Isac Kautto and Emily Miller, and Mike Polencheck of the Apostle Islands Historic Preservation Conservancy in front of the restored icehouse.

From left: Corps members Nick Cox, Christina Schaufler, Nai Yang, Isac Kautto and Emily Miller, and Mike Polencheck of the Apostle Islands Historic Preservation Conservancy in front of the restored icehouse.

This summer, a Conservation Corps crew renovated a historic icehouse on Lake Superior, on what was once an island vacation getaway for a renowned architect of the early 1900s. Over the course of a week, the crew repaired and painted the structure, which was built 100 years ago before refrigerators were around. The West Bay Lodge on Lake Superior’s Sand Island was the dream of Charles Buechner. It featured a two-story lodge and a separate icehouse to keep food fresh. The icehouse took a beating because of its proximity to the lake and over the years was not maintained. The lodge and grounds are now owned by the National Park Service as part of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, with a private party holding use and occupancy rights. Read more about the collaborative project in this Wausau Daily Herald article.