Glenwood 150th logoThis post is part of a collection of posts written for Glenwood’s 150 year celebration. To see the map and full list of locations included in the walking tour, click here.


Pavilion - first

1885 open air pavilion

The first open air pavilion on the lake was built in 1885.  It was a popular gathering spot for visitors, locals and especially students at the nearby Glenwood Academy – a high school for young Lutherans.


In 1908, J.H. McCauley built a replacement pavilion with a dance floor, with the understanding that he would manage it for ten years, then turn it over to the city of Glenwood. The Pavilion opened in May 1909.

Lakeside from Lake

1909 Lakeside Pavilion with Ice Cream Parlor

It immediately became a draw for dances, conventions and large community get-togethers. The entire complex included the dance building, an ice cream parlor, beach facilities and a toboggan slide.


Toboggan slide at Lakeside Bathing Beach

It continued to grow in reputation and size under the management of Tuddy Kaldahl and Harold Brundin, especially through the big band era, when it hosted such bands as the Andrews Sisters, the Everly Brothers, the Glen Miller Orchestra, Lawrence Welk and Louis Armstrong.

Brundin and Kaldahl oversaw several expansions of the building. In the late 1930s, wooden shutters and wood stoves were added to allow year round use. The Ice Cream Parlor and lounge were fully attached in 1947, and in 1953 they held a grand opening to show off a major expansion that created a larger dance floor, a new stage, more lounge space and more restrooms.Lakeside Ballroom

As the popularity of ballroom dancing declined, managers Kaldahl & Brundin along with later managers Duane Peterson and Arnold Moe were able to keep the Ballroom in operation by adding other events to their calendar, including roller skating, Rock and Roll bands, country western bands and private functions such as wedding receptions.04 16 2016 010

When it was destroyed by fire in 2003 there was an immediate cry to rebuild.  The new Lakeside Ballroom opened in 2005, and includes a full restaurant and meeting rooms in addition to the ballroom and bar. Today it is managed by Jill Solmonson and is a popular place for parties, wedding receptions, and community events.  The Ballroom Dance Club meets regularly and the dance tradition continues.2016_03_28_126

Click Here to read about and see a TV program featuring Lakeside and the Ballroom Dance Club.


PC 150th FINAL


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“Spring Cleaning”

002This year, Spring Cleaning at the Pope County Museum includes cleaning the fake snow out of the encampment scene.

We are making some changes to the exhibit…stop in later this spring or summer to see what’s new!


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Pope County History Video

Please stop out at the Pope County Community Expo tomorrow from 9-3:30 at the Minnewaska Area High School to see the new Pope County History Video. We will be available to answer questions at 10:15, 11:15 and 1:15. See you there!

red river and wadswoth trails


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Mystery Shoes


The shoes in the upper left hand corner came from Hershman’s Department Store in Glenwood, and now reside in Japan in a collection of vintage shoes.

This past week we received a research request from a gentleman in Japan. He is a vintage shoe collector and recently acquired a pair of shoes made by the Florsheim Shoe Company. The shoes came from an e-bay seller in Rochester, Minnesota.

There was an additional tag sewn inside the shoes that read Hershman’s Dept. Store / Glenwood, Minn. pic1


A Google search led the Japaneseto us and to Deb Mercier at the Pope County Tribune. A quick search through our Personal and Business files and our photo collection yielded quite a bit of information about Mr. Hershman and his store.

Hershman, George B. 070

George Hershman was born in Poland and moved to Minnesota at age three. As a young man, he moved to Minneapolis and was involved in the manufacture of sweaters.
He came to Glenwood in 1909 and purchased McKinley Mercantile Company Cash Department Store, on the South side of Minnesota Avenue. (Where the Thompson Building stands today.)
He operated Hersman’s Department Store in that location until 1922, when he moved his store to the newly constructed Furtney Building. (The Trumm Drug Store occupies the Furtney Building now.)
Mr. Hershman was very active in the community – involved in civic and community booster clubs.
He died in 1928. In 1929, his store became Norby’s Department store when the sale became finalized.
Our researcher was very happy to read the ad and see the photograph of main street that included the store. He thought the shoes were from the 1930s, but our research proved that they had to have been sold between 1909 and 1929, making the shoes older than he thought.
He believes that Mr. Hershman must have special ordered the shoes, as the Hershman tag was sewn into the shoe.
He also said that he looked up Glenwood on Google maps and was excited to see the building as it looks today.
It is such fun to combine modern internet tools with old fashioned paper photographs and files to solve mysteries for people.

You can read “Hershman’s Department Store” on the sign on the Furtney (Trumm Drug) Building. When we blow up the image, we can see “Norby’s” printed on the awning, which dates this photo as 1929.

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Going our of business ad from 1929.

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Pope County 150 Video

0012016 marks the 150th “Birthday” of Pope County. Brent Gulsvig, our archivist and staff video expert, is hard at work on a video that will cover 150 years of Pope County History.

The video will feature animated maps as well as numerous video clips and photographs. We will cover everything from the Oxcart trails to the Powerline controversy to today.

Come and see the debut of the production at Pope County Expo on April 9, along with a series of banners highlighting different aspects of Pope County History.003

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Progress on the Wall

Things are moving along with the wall repair.

Now …. what new exhibits shall we put in?



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Big Changes at the Museum

003We took down the farmstead exhibit today at the museum. I did a bit of shooting before packing the figures away in a box. This exhibit has been in place since I was a child, but with the walls of the building undergoing needed repair, we needed to take apart several exhibits, at least temporarily. The farmstead, the tack shop and the forge / wood shop have been dismantled. The artifacts have been moved to safe locations away from the work site.012

It is an exciting opportunity to make some changes and updates to the exhibits.


The museum will remain open regular hours during the repairs, but one corner of the gallery and the period rooms will be closed to visitors until further notice.

There is still much to see in the remaining exhibits, and the family history library and archives are not affected at all by the repair work, so stop on in and see us. 10-5 Tuesday-Saturday.018

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