Wayzata’s Schoolhouse Hill

by | Jan 2023

Wayzata's First High School.  Burned in 1910.

Photo: Wayzata Historical Society

A quick history of Wayzata’s Schoolhouse Hill.

The first school to sit atop the hill at Rice Street and Broadway Avenue in Wayzata was built circa 1890. It was replaced at least once before an unusual Pueblo Revival building was constructed in 1921. Originally named Wayzata Consolidated School, it housed grades kindergarten through 12.

The building featured a gymnasium with clerestory windows, a regulation-size basketball court, as well as indoor showers and a community room with fireplace. Classrooms were purportedly filled with natural light and boasted views of Wayzata Bay and the town below.

When a new high school was built in 1953, the building was renamed Widsten Elementary School in memory of the late principal Halvor Widsten. It continued to serve as an elementary school until Wayzata Public Schools sold it to a developer in 1989. The building was ultimately razed in 1992, and today the site is occupied by townhomes.

Aaron Person serves as the president of the Wayzata Historical Society. Discover more at wayzatahistoricalsociety.org.


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