We decided to rent a cabin for the summer in 1980 and looked in the newspaper classified ads. One ad was from someone in our St. Paul neighborhood. He drove us there to have a look at the place. It was on Big Round Lake. I remember going through Amery, Wis., to get there.
My Aunt Esther was with us, and she advised us not to rent it, not only because the front entrance was missing all its steps but also because the man did not know how the propane heater worked.
We continued to scour the newspaper ads. We did not want to be hours away in northern Minnesota or Canada. We found an ad for a cabin on Cedar Lake near Star Prairie, Wis. The rent was $1,000 for the season.
The first day we were there a hose from the well sprang a leak. We did not know what to do. Fortunately, a man from a nearby cabin had introduced himself, and he came over to fix it.
Weeks went by, and we decided in August to look for our own cabin. We spotted a local ad for a new cabin on Bone Lake. We had heard that Bone Lake was a premium lake, and the price of the cabin seemed quite good.
We drove to the real estate office in Luck, Wis., and were informed that there was a typo: The cabin was at “Boner Lake,” an 80-acre lake about 15 miles northeast of Webster, Wis. We decided to buy it. We could spend the entire summer there because I was off from teaching, and my wife was a stay-at-home mom. The setting was placid until Friday evenings, when people from the Twin Cities arrived to spend the weekend with their noisy speedboats and Jet Skis. We had a canoe.
Some of the weekend revelers apparently were highly amused by a lake named Boner. Whenever a road sign was put up it was stolen. The name of the lake is pronounced “Bonner,” and eventually the town decided to put up Bonner Lake signs.
We decided over time that we wanted to be on a larger lake, and we looked throughout northwestern Wisconsin. We landed at Lake Superior with a cabin on Siskiwit Bay’s sand beach in Cornucopia, Wis. That’s a story for another day.
Norman Larson, Eagan