In what could almost be called serendipity, greater-Onamia resident Tammy Hulsing found herself reluctantly preparing to sell her cabin near Grand Marais and unexpectedly falling in love with a cabin much closer to home.

After many years of the 5-plus hour drive to her cabin on the north shore, the long distance became too much for Hulsing and her husband, leading to the decision to turn the page and put the cherished cabin up for sale. But what she didn’t expect was that the page would turn so quickly.

When the Mille Lacs Hunting Lodge, a well-known resort nestled in the Mille Lacs Wildlife Management Area, southeast of Onamia hit the market this past spring, Hulsing – having never visited the property before – decided she might as well take a look.

“I really wasn’t planning on this,” Hulsing confessed, but she quickly gave in to the charm of the lodge, and within a matter of weeks, she was the proud owner of what she now calls Mille Lacs Lodge.

Hulsing, an avid quilter, envisions the 5,000 square foot lodge as the ultimate crafter’s retreat. The great room boasts large wood dining tables and Hulsing has already stocked the closets full of crafting tables that can be spread through the open floor plan.

The facility has a large commercial kitchen that clients have access to, along with six bedrooms, six bathrooms, a billiard room and more.

But Hulsing’s ambitions don’t stop at craft weekends. She said the facility is also ideal for family reunions, business retreats, get-togethers or even just a private couple’s weekend getaway.

“It’s a great place to come together and relax and visit,” Hulsing said.

Just outside of the lodge is a park-like setting surrounded by trees. And within a short walk of the parking lot is a private pond with a view that stretches into the WMA, leading to endless wildlife viewing opportunities.

Prior to undertaking this new adventure, Hulsing said she had been an accountant for a large resort in Isle and was the gambling manager for the Mille Lacs Drift Skippers, and she feels her past experience will be invaluable in her new role as resort owner herself.

“I hadn’t really planned on opening my own business,” Hulsing mused. But that’s what is so fun about serendipity.

Mille Lacs Lodge is reachable by phone at (320) 532-3384 or through its website, www.millelacslodge.com.

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