May 14, 2019 | 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Meetings are at the Grand Ely Lodge at noon on Tuesdays. More information will be available closer to the meeting dates.
Don’t miss this interesting story about Ely’s early history presented by Sally Koski and Valerie Myntti entitled:
CO-OP POINT on Eagles Nest Lake I
Come and find out about a fascinating, but largely forgotten, chapter in the history of the Ely area!
Co-op Point was an intentional community developed in the early 1930’s by Finnish immigrants to the Iron Range, who believed in the unique philosophy of ‘co-operative socialism’. The Iron Range was home to several of these special Finnish communities.
Sally’s and Valerie’s grandfathers were among the original members on Eagles Nest Lake I. They purchased land for approximately 15 cabins and created a large park open to any Finnish family to enjoy—to picnic and camp– and together the original members began a summer camp for the children of the early Minnesota ‘co-operators’. It was crucially important to them to teach this unique philosophy of “cooperative Finnish socialism” –that they so highly valued– to the next generation each summer.
Many of the cabins on Co-op Point continue to be owned by the descendants of the original ‘Co-operators’. Sally still has the original Koski cabin. Valerie has a cabin on Eagles Nest Lake III.
Don Myntti of Duluth and Clarence Ivonen of Virginia— both in their mid-90’s — are the sole surviving children of the original co-operators, and as children summered on Co-op Point and attended the annual Co-op Point camp. They attribute their longevity to frequent saunas and swimming in cold northern Minnesota lakes.
Valerie and Sally will share their family stories about this special place and period of Finnish- American history.
Location: Grand Ely Lodge
400 N Pioneer Road, Ely, MN, 55731