Then & Now

An advertisement for the Big Boat Burning, when the ship Excelsior was lit on fire on Lake Minnetonka.

In 1901, Dr. George LaPaul had a stern-wheel steamboat built bearing his name at a cost of $10,000.

The George launched from the Excelsior docks with a large crowd of over 1,000 spectators. The boat held 800 passengers and was the largest boat on Lake Minnetonka at the time.

The 100th year of St. Bartholomew Catholic Faith Community’s history in Wayzata is drawing to a close.

Father Colman Barry, left, and Bill Kling at the first MPR station in Collegeville, Minn.

The Cottagewood Store in Deephaven opens each spring for the season and closes again on the evening of Halloween, with special events in the fall and winter like a chili cook-off and a Christmas festival.

Even in the depths of winter, the Excelsior-Lake Minnetonka Historical Society is busy cataloguing the area’s past. Deep in the basement of the old Excelsior School House, the curators open the archives on Wednesdays and the second Saturday of the month to history buffs.

Before World War I, many residents of the Lake Minnetonka area of German heritage were proud of their roots. In 1883, German nobility even visited the lake to celebrate James J.

For more than 60 years, KMC Dance Studio has been teaching lake-area kids and teens dance moves, from beginning to advanced. The popular family-owned business experienced a change.

Brooklyn Vetter had every intention of leaving the Midwest. Born and raised in South Dakota, she studied sociology and women’s studies at Minnesota State University, Mankato, and was itching for a change. Some travel? Maybe. A change of scenery? Definitely.

When September arrives and the leaves start to turn, Wayzata throws summer’s last bash.

One of the first women to attend the University of Minnesota in the 1870s, Abbie Wakefield proudly wore long trousers and bloomers, which were made popular by Amelia Jenks Bloomer and marked a liberated woman.

We’ve all been there: The kids are off at the neighborhood park, and you expect them home for dinner—and you hope they’re keeping an eye on the time. Thankfully, the city of Excelsior still operates its historic siren, which rings daily at noon, 6 p.m. and 9 p.m.

Pages