McArdle'sMcArdle's Resort

Craig & Paige Brown
1014 W. Winnie Rd NW
Bena, MN 56626



A visit to Babe the Blue Ox is a must during your Minnesota family vacation

Area Attractions


White Oak Society Forest History Center Hill Annex Mine Judy Garland Birthplace
Children's Discovery Museum Camp Rabideau CCC Lost Forty Cut Foot Sioux Ranger Sioux
Joyce Estate Suomi Hills Golf Amusement Parks
Itasca State Park Lake Bemidji State Park Horseback Riding Hiking & Biking Trails
Gambling Casinos Great Northern Depot Museum Forestridge Winery Bemidji Woolen Mills



White Oak Society, Inc.

The members of the White Oak Society provide "living history" interpretations of the fur trade era within the Great Lakes region. They operate The White Oak Learning Centre & White Oak Fur Post located just north of Deer River, Minnesota on US Hwy. 6. Housed within the White Oak Learning Centre are The Great Hall, The Rick Balen Library, The White Oak Society Office and the opportunity of a variety of educational programs for youths and adults alike. Their goal is to expand today's horizons with a "hands on" experience of the past.

The Norwesters, their volunteer and part-time staff of interpreters, portray authentic characters of the fur trade at the White Oak Fur Post and in communities throughout the region. These "interpreters" help you understand the history of the fur trading era by portraying the life style of people from that era. Dressed in authentic costumes, White Oak Society members communicate history by demonstrating the actual working and living conditions of the time.

Each year the White Oak Society sponsors the White Oak Rendezvous and Festival where an 18th Century Fur Post "comes alive!" The event includes a participant family camp that allows reenactors and the public an opportunity to relive the vibrancy and ambiance of a thriving Northwest Company Fur Post. For more information call them at 218-246-9393 or email them:


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Forest History Center

Visit a recreated turn-of-the-century logging camp where you will find the camp blacksmith, saw filer, clerk, cook and lumberjacks. Then, board the moored river "wanigan," a floating cook shack used when the logs, and men, headed downstream to the mills. Or, take a seat on the porch of a 1930s Minnesota Forest Service patrolman's cabin and hear about the ranger's important work protecting woodland resources. Self-guided forest trails and museum exhibits complete the story of in the northern forests of Minnesota from ancient times to today.

The living history features, interpretive building and trails are open June 1 through October 15 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.- Monday through Saturday; and from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. The interpretive building and trails are open on weekdays 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. year-round (closed winter holidays). Cross country ski trails are open daily as snow conditions permit.

For more information check out the Forest History Center website or call 218-327-4482. The Forest History Center is located near US Highways 169 and 2 at 2609 County Road 76, Grand Rapids, Minnesota 55744.


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Hill Annex Mine

Hill Annex Mine is the world's largest open pit mine that is open for tours. Located in Calumet, Minnesota, just off Hwy. 169, the history of Hill Annex dates back more than a century. The land was originally leased for mineral exploration in 1892. It was leased again in 1900 for a period of more than 50 years. Mining began in 1913 and continued until 1978. Hill Annex Mine produced 63 million of iron ore, and was the sixth largest producer in the state. Over its 60 years of operation, mining technology changed drastically. In the early days, horses provided the power. Eventually steam and then electrical power replaced the horse-drawn equipment. When the high-grade ore finally played out, the mine was sold to the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board (IRRRB) for $1. The IRRRB developed the tour route, the clubhouse into a museum/visitor center, and gave tours of the mine for 10 years. In 1988, the State Legislature made Hill Annex Mine a state park. It is now a national historic site.

The open pit mine has become a lake frequented by osprey, gulls and loons. When the mine shut down in 1978, the pumps that kept it dry over the years were stopped, and the water seeped back in. The tour offers visitors panoramic views of the mine pit lakes and the rock walls in their various hues of red.

Mine tours are led by interpreters who all have a mining background. In addition to mine tours, interpreters also lead park geology tours and fossil hunts during the summer season. . Discover the history of mining on the Iron Range, vintage machinery and the beauty of scenic overlooks. Tours are held daily during the summer season and on weekends later into the fall. Office hours are 9.30 a.m.-6 p.m. In spring, fall and winter, office is open Mon-Fri. but due to short staffing, it is best to call ahead for hours. For more information call 218-247-7215.


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Judy Garland Birthplace Historic House & Children’s Discovery Museum

Visit the house in which American entertainment legend Judy Garland spent the first four and a half years of her life. The restored-to-the-1920's house tells the story of this young performer, her family and her career. At the Oz Exhibit & Children's Museum find interactive activities to charm children of all ages. See the original carriage used in the 1939 MGM Classic The Wizard of Oz.

The Judy Garland Birthplace Historic House and the Children’s Discovery Museum are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
They are located at 2727 Hwy. 169 South in Grand Rapids. For more information call 1-800-664-JUDY or 218-327-9276, visit their websites at: or


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Itasca Heritage Center Museum And Judy Garland Exhibit

The Itasca Heritage Museum captures the flavor of the turn of the century and the stories of the people, places, and resources that shaped this region. Marvel at the resourcefulness of the Native
Americans. Learn how the Mississippi River allowed access to the land that provided nation with the resources of lumber and iron ore. Admire the simple life of the immigrants who came to this area for the promise of a good life. Walk down a main street of yesterday. Learn about the simple home life of early residents.

Judy Garland Exhibit: A Family Scrapbook

Judy Garland was born Frances Ethel Gumm in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. During their 12 years in this area, the Gumm family operated the New Grand Theater. The story of this family of entertainers is what you will discover in the exhibit "A Family Scrapbook" which includes rare photographs, artifacts of her childhood, family life, and movie career. It's a must see.

The museum is located on the third floor of the Old Central School in Grand Rapids at the intersection of Highways 169 and 2. It is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday - Friday; 9:40 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays; and on Sundays during the summer from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information call 218-326-6431.


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Chippewa National Forest’s "Lost Forty"

Experience the forests of old at the Chippewa national Forest’s "Lost Forty." The original Government Land Survey in 1882 described the land of the Lost Forty as part of Coddington Lake. This mapping error caused the virgin pine of the area to be left behind by loggers at the turn of the century. The Lost Forty is actually 144 acres.

Most of the mature red and white pine is found on the east end of the Lost Forty. These trees are up to 350 years old and between 22 and 48 inches in diameter. Biologically, pine can live up to 500 years.

A one-mile self-guided trail winds its way through the majestic pines of the Lost Forty. A picnic area is also available at the site.

The Lost Forty is located northwest of Wirt, Minnesota approximately two miles north of the intersection of County Roads 29 and 26. (on the Official Itasca County Map look for the big pine tree in the northwest part of the county.)


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Cut Foot Sioux Ranger Station

Cut Foot Sioux Ranger Station is the oldest remaining ranger station building in the Forest Service’s Eastern Region. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, tours are arranged through the Cut Foot Sioux Visitor Information Center.

The ranger station and visitor center is located on State Highway 46 near Cutfoot Sioux Lake and Lake Winnibigoshish.


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Trout Lake Semiprimitive Non-motorized Area and the Joyce Estate

Trout Lake Semiprimitive Non-motorized Area and the Joyce Estate offer 6,000 acres of forest with 26 miles of shoreline on 11 lakes. Ten miles of old roads and trails provide for hunting, hiking or skiing. The rolling terrain provides scenic views over area lakes wrapped with maple, aspen, birch and scattered pine.

In the 1880s, William T. Joyce came to the area and started buying land and timber. The area was logged in the early 1900s and the logs were floated out through the chain of lakes to the prairie river and then to the Mississippi River. About 1918, the heir to the family fortune originating in lumber taken from northern Minnesota, David Joyce of Chicago, surveyed the area around Trout Lake with the intention of building a hunting camp. Over the next 17 years he built a 4,500 acre private resort with 40 buildings, a golf course, private telephone line and airplane hangar. The Joyce Family called this place "Nopeming" (meaning place of rest in Ojibwe). The estate operated as a plush private resort for the Joyce Family until 1972 when it was sold to the Nature Conservancy. The Forest Service subsequently acquired it in 1973.

Visitors can tour the grounds of the Joyce Estate and view the rustic log architecture and stickwork characteristic of the Adirondack tradition. The Joyce Estate is located 13 miles north of Grand Rapids, one mile east of the intersection of County Road 60 and State Highway 38.


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Suomi Hills

The remote setting of the Suomi Hills semiprimitive nonmotorized area is made up of rolling hills, clear lakes and some of the most spectacular fall color in the area. There are 21 miles of trail, numerous small lakes and several primitive campsites for day or overnight hiking, biking, skiing and canoe trips. The rolling topography offers cross country skiers and mountain bike trails for intermediate and advance skiers and bikers. The trails are groomed and track-set in the winter and mowed in the summer.

North Suomi Hills is the site of the Day Lake Civilian Conservation Camp (CCC), which became a prisoner of war camp during World War II.

Suomi Hills is located 14 miles north of Grand Rapids on the Edge of the Wilderness Scenic Byway (State Highway 38).


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Golf Courses


With four 18-hole championship courses and several more nine-hole courses found within Itasca County, you are certain to find a tee-time to suit your needs. Very few northern resort areas offer the many choices we do. Area courses include a wide variety of golf to accommodate all skill levels. For the most enjoyable time, call ahead to set a tee time.

Finally, who says price doesn't matter? You'll find that Northwoods golf offers very affordable golf fees with some of the best values in the Midwest.


Area Golf Courses

Golf Course


Maple Ridge Golf Course

2,000 No 218-751-8401 South of Bemidji on Beltrami Line Rd - 1 mile E of Hwy 71 S

Bemidji Town & Country Golf Club

6,179 Yes 218-751-9215 Birchmont Beach Road


3,008 Yes 218-751-3875 6 mi. E of Bemidji on Swenson Rd
Hwy 2 to Cty. Rd 8, travel 7 miles to Swenson Road, travel N 1 1/2 miles.

Castle Highlands

5,090 No 218-586-2681 10 miles N of Bemidji at
Hwy. 71 and Cty Rd 23

Sand Trap Golf Course

6,038 No 218-335-6531 6355 Golf Course Rd
Cass Lake MN 56633

Tianna Country Club

6,323 Yes 218-547-1712 2 miles S of Walker on Hwy. 34
Ridgewood Country Club 6,563 No 218-363-2444 2 1/4 miles E of Longville on Hwy. 7
Chippewa National Golf Course 3,120 No 218-363-2552 Rural Rt. 1, Longville, MN
Longbow Golf Club 6,500 No 218-547-4121 6 miles N of Walker on Hwy. 371

Blueberry Hills Golf Course

3,121 Yes 218-246-8010

1 mi. N of Deer River on

Hwy. 6, turn E on G.C. Rd.

Pokegama Golf Club

6,105 Yes 218-326-3444

3910 Golf Course Road

Grand Rapids

Wendigo Golf Club

6,460 Yes 218-327-2211

750 Golf Crest Drive

Grand Rapids

Eagle Ridge Golf Club

6,245 Yes 218-245-2217

One Green Way, Coleraine

Hwy 169 East, Coleraine

Sugarbrooke Golf Club

6,545 Yes 218-327-1462

Located at Ruttger's

Sugar Lake Lodge

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Amusement Parks

Paul Bunyan Amusement Park: Amusement Rides for All Ages. Miniature golf with a Paul Bunyan Theme. Located next to the Tourist Information Center and Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox Statues. Generally open from Memorial Day Weekend to Labor Day. Hours: 10:00 A.M. until dusk, weather permitting.

Paul Bunyan Animal Land: Feed and pet tame wildlife including pygmy goats, lambs, calves, ponies, fox, raccoons, exotic birds and everyone’s favorite – deer (4 species). Trout pond. Over 85 animals
representing every continent. Home of the legendary whitetail deer - BJ - Feed him, pet him and take your picture with him. Open Memorial Day - Labor Day, 7 days a week. 10:00 to 6:00. 218-759-1533


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Headwaters of the Mississippi - Itasca State Park

Within Itasca's 32,000 acres you will find the Headwaters of the Mississippi River and more than 6,000 acres of old growth forest. Special events are held throughout the year. Call 218-266-2100 for information. Look at our events calendar for listings. Recreational equipment rental available.


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Lake Bemidji State Park


In the pine-moraine setting on the north shore of 6,420 acre Lake Bemidji, this state park affords visitors an enjoyable combination of Minnesota lake country recreation and the natural experiences of the northern forest. The short hike to the bluff at Rocky Point high above the blue waters, under a canopy of pine, birch and maple, is both memorable and inspirational. Bog boardwalk, paved bike trail, pontoon boat tours & birding opportunities. For information, call 218-755-3843.


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Horseback Riding

Rising Star Ranch: Trail rides, pony rides, petting zoo, gift shop. Located on Hwy 71 east of the Itasca State Park entrance.218-732-1749 or 888-900-1749

Stein's Winding River Farm: Horseback Rides, Trail Rides, Pony Rides, Miles & Miles of Trails, Trail Guide Available 20 Miles NW of Bemidji 218-243-2629 Open year around.

Double K Ranch & Stables: Take a trail ride through the Chippewa National Forest or along the Taconite Trail with horses of all shapes, colors and sizes. Pony rides are available for the little cowpokes. Learn to ride with regular lessons or give a horse lover, age 8 or older, a week-long summer horse camp adventure to learn what owning and caring for a horse is all about. (218) 245-3814.


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The Great Northern Depot Museum


The Great Northern Depot is of historical significance since it was the last depot built by "empire builder" James J. Hill. It has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1988. Built in 1912, the arched framework of the Depot windows represents a neo-classic design. The depot is also associated with two statewide historical events: Agricultural Development and Railroad construction and the Northern Minnesota Lumbering era, all of which took place between 1870 and 1920. The depot represents a broad diversity of people who lived and continue to live in this area. The depot has been restored to house the Beltrami County History Center and Museum.

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Hiking & Biking Trails

The Chippewa National Forest makes maps available for most of their hiking trails, ranging from .5 to 68 miles. Some trails are known for their eagle viewing, others are self-guided nature tours.
Seventy-eight miles of non-motorized trails pass through some of the best grouse habitat in the Forest. In addition to offering excellent fall grouse and deer hunting opportunities, these trails also provide excellent hiking, cross-country skiing and wildlife viewing opportunities throughout the year.

Approximately 18 miles northwest of Deer River just off Hwy. 46 and just a few miles from the resort are several hiking and biking trails. The Pigeon Lakes Loop winds for 22 miles, the Cutfoot Sioux Trail
offers 18 miles of trails and the Simpson Creek trail is an easy biking trail with 13 miles.

The Lost Forty Loop is a biking trail that winds for 27 miles around the Lost 40, Island Lake, Moose Lake and the Popple River. It is classified as a moderate trail..

Trail maps are available at the Ranger Station in Deer River and at the Cutfoot Sioux Visitor Center.


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Gambling Casinos

Indian gaming casinos are in abundance in our area. Guests will find Palace Casino in Cass Lake, MN, White Oak Casino in Deer River, MN and Northern Lights Casino in Walker, MN all within easy driving distance.


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Forestedge Winery

Visit a winery located on your way to Itasca State Park. Sample wines handcrafted from fruits and berries that survive the winters of Minnesota's North Country. Open Mother's Day through
Christmas on Tuesday thru Saturday from 10:00 to 5:30 and on Sunday from Noon to 5:00. Closed Mondays.  Call 218-224-3535 for more information.


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Bemidji Woolen Mills


Visit a Bemidji tradition. Through four generations, the Batchelder family has been producing the highest quality and most unique products.  Factory tours available.  "Warming the World since 1920."  Hours:  Mon-Sat - 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Sunday - 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.


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Camp Rabideau CCC

Take a step into the past at historic Camp Rabideau. The camp is located 6 miles south of Blackduck on County Road 39. Camp Rabideau is one of three remaining Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camps being preserved out of the 2600 that were established in 1935. Camp Rabideau was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1976.

Camp Rabideau is located on a 112-acre tract purchased in 1934. The buildings are set about 100 feet apart, surrounded by tall trees forming a large glade in the center. The open area was once the location of the mess hall which burned down in the 1930s. Benjamin and Carls Lakes are visible from the barracks. Today, 15 of the original 25 buildings remain and 4 are maintained to honor those who served as CCC corpsman.

Camp Rabideau's first enrollees, company 3749 from Bennett Springs, Missouri, built and occupied the camp from August 1935 to January 4, 1936. After the crew was relocated to California, Minnesota
Company 708 was moved from Bena to Camp Rabideau by truck in 45 degrees-below-zero weather.

Company 708 remained at Rabideau until the end of the program in 1941. Work projects ranged from building the Blackduck Ranger Station and two fire towers to planting trees, doing deer census and
searching for lost persons during the berry picking and deer hunting seasons.

A one mile trail runs through Camp Rabideau. An open air picnic shelter is also located at the camp. The shelter was built by the CCC and moved from the Cut Foot Sioux area to Camp Rabideau in 1986. Interpretive displays highlight the buildings and history of the area. Tours are conducted Sunday and Wednesdays, 10:00 - 5:00. Call 218-835-4291 for arrangements.

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Hospitals & Clinics


We certainly hope that you have no need of medical care while you vacation at McArdle's Resort.  However, you can rest assured that that our area has several quality healthcare centers if you do need the services of a physician.

  • North Country Regional Hospital, Bemidji, MN • Phone:  1-218-751-5430

  • Merit Care Clinic, Bemidji, MN • Phone:  1-800-942-4923

  • Deer River Healthcare Center (Hospital), Deer River, MN • Phone:  1-218-246-2900

  • Deer River Healthcare Center (Clinic), Deer River, MN • Phone:  1-218-246-8275

  • Grand Itasca Hospital & Clinic, Grand Rapids, MN • Phone:  1-218-326-3401

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For Reservations Call 1-800-535-2398

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