The Telemark Lodge, the starting point for the annual American Birkebiner, has been abandoned and foreclosure of the 150-room lodge and grounds should be sped up. Wisconsin Public Radio reported that a Bayfield County judge issued the ruling.
Mortgage holder Dick Short says the abandonment ruling means the title can be cleared of lien holders, creating a better chance that the property can be sold.
“Our goal is to keep Telemark alive,“Short said. ”Once the community finds out that there are people who might be interested and are good people, support for Telemark will come back.”
The Northland News Center reported that the head of the Cable, Wis. Chamber of Commerce also said the court action is good news. James Bolen told the station that the designation will make it easier to find a new owner for the lodge.
Since March, Telemark hasn’t had electricity or water. Grass on the property hasn’t been cut, and there’s evidence of looting in the lodge.
Regardless of the future of the property, the Associated Press reports that the American Birkebeiner has an agreement to use the 900 acres of property and trails for next February’s race. Around 13,000 cross country skiiers participate in the American Birkebeiner. The race, the largest such event in the country, has been an annual event since 1973.