The American Birkebeiner will go on this year with the blessing of the mysterious new owners of Telemark Resort. But they have no plans to reopen the 1,000-room lodge there.
Last week the property was sold at auction to Newco, a private investment firm from Colorado.
The Duluth News Tribune reported that James Bolen, the director of the Cable Area Chamber of Commerce, met with the new owners and representative of the Birkebeiner, the country's largest corss county ski race. Bolen declined to reveal the names of the new owners. He said he believed they would “reveal themselves” soon.
“For this winter, (they said) just plan on the property being used the way it always has been," Bolen said.
The new owners regard the acquisition of the 925-acre property as “a pretty good land buy,” he added. “They were not motivated to open the lodge.”
That news will be a relief to the area's business community. A recent report by Wisconsin Public Radio reported there were rumors and concern that the new owners would shutter the resort.
The report said that Newco includes a member of the wealthy S.C. Johnson Wax corporate family.