Friday, January 12, 2018

Long Lake Resident is Remembered

At his cabin on Enchanted Drive
John Gary "Gus" Gustafson, age 85, of White Bear Lake passed away peacefully surrounded by his loving family. He was preceded in death by his parents, Ernest and Margaret Gustafson; sister Mary; and first wife Donna. Gus is survived by his loving wife Ruby of 46 years; children Jim Gustafson, Dawn (Dale) Hammerschmidt, Jennifer Slupe, Beth (Mike) Mustar, Peter (Tina) Walker, Ann (Tom) Hersman, Nancy (Paul) Melquist, and Paul (Mary) Walker. He was idolized by twenty grandchildren, their spouses, and eight great-grandchildren; siblings Kent (Vicki) Gustafson, Karen (Dale) Kjensrud, Sheryl (Kirby) Borden, and Margo (Mike, dec.) McCormick and many nieces and nephews.

Gus grew up on a farm outside of Windom, MN. He served in the Army overseas during the Korean conflict. A graduate of Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, he was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in 1957. An injury sustained in a preseason game put an early end to his playing career. In 1961, Gus married Donna Reinhardt. They had three beautiful children. Donna passed away following a valiant fight with cancer. In 1969, Gus married his high school sweetheart Ruby. Along with her 5 children, they became a family. Gus' teaching and football coaching career spanned over 40 years, mostly at North St. Paul High School, and included winning a state title in the 70s. He was recognized by former students everywhere he went. He was inducted into many Halls of Fame, including: Windom Area High School, Minnesota Football Coaches, Gustavus Adolphus, and was selected as the Minnesota High School Track coach of the year in 1979. He also served as president of the Old Timers Football Association.

Besides his family, his greatest love was being at his cabin on Long Lake outside of Park Rapids. He loved to rake the woods, split firewood, have raging bonfires and drink a beer (or two) in the sauna.  Memorials may be sent to Redeemer Lutheran Church, White Bear Lake MN or the Long Lake Area Association, P.O. Box 808. Park Rapids, MN 56470.

Published in Pioneer Press on Jan. 7, 2018

Friday, December 22, 2017

Ice Spotters Concurred

All of our ice spotters concurred!  We now have our official ice-in date for 2017 on Long Lake confirmed.  It happened yesterday, Thursday, December 21, 2017, which fittingly was also the first day of winter.

Michelle Armstrong had the closest guess for the ice in date.  She guessed Dec 18th. The next closest guess was December 27th.  We had 15 people enter guesses for the ice-in date this year.  There will be a drawing for the quilt donated by Monika at the beginning of the Annual Meeting in June 2018.

We wish you a wonderful holiday season.  Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the Long Lake Area Association board and the website staff.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

The official Long Lake "Ice In" guessing contest is open.

I have been trying to be hopeful that this cold snap would not last.  But as of today,  I can't procrastinate any longer:

The official Long Lake "Ice In" guessing contest is open.  

Join the fun! Guess the “Ice In” date for Long Lake this season!  To participate, please send your guess of the date that Long Lake will be completely frozen over to

All those selecting the winning date will be recognized on this blog. A drawing from ALL participant names will be held at the annual meeting for the lucky winner of a quilt, compliments of Monika; The winner can pick up the quilt when you are at the lake, if not present.

To help you with your guesses check out the link to the Ice Data page on our website. It has all the historical data.  Good Luck..

Click on this link to view the entire 2017 Autumn Newsletter

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Beaver Hard at Work

This past summer Dan Rice, who has a cabin near Breezy Point on the west side of Long Lake, noticed that a couple of the trees on the point were losing some of the bark near the bottom of their trunks.  With a closer look, he saw that the bark had been chewed off in a perfect circle to girdle the tree.  By the end of the summer both trees had fallen into the lake; one to the north and one to the south.  It will be interesting to see if anyone sees the beaver working out on Breezy Point this fall or early next spring.  Thank you for the pictures, Dan.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Long Lake resident is remembered.

Ardis G. Christen

Ardis Georgianne Fiskerbeck Christen was born in Superior, WI on February 19, 1938 to K. Victor A. Fiskerbeck and Violet Gulsvig Fiskerbeck. She died in Rochester MN at St. Mary's Hospital on Friday, September 15, 2017, following heart surgery on August 29, 2017.

She continued her education at Luther College where she met Dean Christen, her husband of 53 years, graduating with a BA in English and Speech Education in 1959. She received a Master of Science Degree from Mankato State University in Library Technology and taught in the Elkton, Rochester, and Stewartville Public Schools.

Dean and Ardis were married on August 16, 1959 and had two daughters, Lisa and Kari. She enjoyed spending her summers on Long Lake in Park Rapids where she loved watching the loons. She always kept an eye on the loon chicks in an effort to protect them from bald eagles.  She had an insatiable love of learning and thirst for knowledge and research which she delighted in sharing with everyone. Ardis felt most complete when she was caring for someone else. She was the primary caregiver for her mother and her husband in their last years. She cared about everyone she met and loved to help others. She always put others first. Family and friends were an important part of her life.

Link to Enterprise Obituary