The Chutes, a family of sailing enthusiasts, had long dreamed of living on Lake Minnetonka. “It was a goal of our family ... to get on the lake,” recalled Fred Chute Jr.
In 1965, Chute’s parents, Fred and Marcy, found a 1935 Colonial Revival-style house in tiny Woodland that was big enough for their brood.
“With six kids, we needed a lot of bedrooms, and it had a lot of bedrooms [nine],” said Fred Jr.
The house, which is on Wayzata Bay, “has a spectacular view of downtown Wayzata,” said Fred Jr. “My parents were so enamored of that view they added picture windows on the lake side, in the kitchen and library.”
At night, when the lights twinkle across the water, “it’s magical,” said real estate agent Patti Jo Hermann, Edina Realty.
Fred Jr.’s most vivid memories of his parents’ home involve the lake — sailboat races, regattas, fishing and picnics on the water. “We had a pet raccoon named Rocky — we even took him out on a sailboat one time.”
Winter meant skating — and even more boating. “My dad was into iceboating — a sailboat on runners,” Fred Jr. said.
As a teen, he enjoyed spending time in the wood-paneled lower-level rec room. “It had a giant fireplace where you could build a really big fire,” he said. “We’d play pool and pingpong, socialize and listen to music.”
The house, which is still owned by his mother, has been the setting for decades of Chute celebrations. “It was a nice warm gathering spot for the holidays,” said Fred Jr.
The 7,659-square-foot house, now on the market for $6.5 million, has hardwood floors throughout, fluted columns and arches and four fireplaces, one in the living room, dining room, master bedroom and walkout lower level.
There’s a secluded screen porch that stays cool in summer, and a patio with a panoramic view of Wayzata Bay. There’s also a private tennis court, a small building near the water that could be converted into a boathouse, and even a tunnel, connecting the house and the detached garage.
But the house’s prime location, almost 2 acres of land and 210 feet of sandy shoreline are its greatest assets, Hermann said.
The 84-year-old house, which has six bathrooms and a vintage kitchen, needs some updating. And with so much valuable land on such a coveted part of the lake, there’s a good chance someone will buy it for the lot, tear down the house and build a new one.
“We know that’s one of the realities of today’s world,” said Fred Jr. “When somebody purchases it, it’s up to them what they do with it. We’re accepting of it.”
Patti Jo Hermann, 612-386-8009, Edina Realty, has the listing.