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Lakesider News

Lakeside Cabins get makeover

By Kevin Greer
Lakeside Communications Manager

A group of Lakeside volunteers got together to make improvements to three cabins located on Seventh Street, between Central and Cedar Avenues.

The group put over 1,200 hours into painting, decorating, installing new showers and toilets, staining and varnishing unfinished cabinetry they purchased and made curtains.

“The cabins were in disrepair,” said volunteer Char Wilkerson. “We got a volunteer group together to come in and fix them up.”

Wilkerson said the project was initiated by the Land Management and Development Task Force. Wilkerson and her husband, Len Forinash, are part of that team who was looking at what to do with some of the property that Lakeside owns.

The cabins were built in 1947 and 1948 as part of a youth group initiative called “The Diamond Jubilee Fund,” with the Norwalk District of The United Methodist Church heading up the campaign. The cabins started to deteriorate and there were discussions about tearing them down and what could replace them.

When the Task Force looked into it, they determined there wasn’t anything affordable to build that could be rented for an affordable price. Instead, the group decided to do some renovations and turn three of the cabins into affordable family-friendly options.

Wilkerson said it cost less than $1,000 per cabin to give them a face lift, with Lakesiders donating some of the furniture and decorations. Lakeside chipped in by hiring professional roofers for needed maintenance.

“We volunteered to clean them up and save the cabins,” Wilkerson said. “If you look them, they’re sturdy and more than just functional. They’re really comfortable.”

“You can rent them for one night or however long you want,” Wilkerson said. “It’s great for families on a budget. Being able to cook is the real advantage because if you bring a family and you’re trying to eat out, it can get very expensive.”

The three family cabins are big enough to sleep up to eight guests, with two bunk beds and a pull-out sofa. They also include a kitchenette with full-size refrigerator, oven, microwave, plates, cookware and silverware. The cabins also have dressers, full bathrooms and a portable air conditioner.

Each cabin has a theme. Cabin 1 is “Gone Fishing,” Cabin 2 is “Sail Away” and Cabin 3 is the “Sweet Suite.” All three can be rented for $120 per night and there isn’t a maximum number of days a group must stay.

Special thanks to the core group of volunteers, including Wilkerson, Forinash, Ginger Leonard, Barb Hoffman, Sherry Kapes, Jerry Leonard, Steve Adams, Molly Adams. Brad Hoopes, Vern Hartenburg, Julie Marinchick, John Musson, Dave Strauch and Kathy Venema.

Anyone interested in renting a cabin can contact Theresa Barger, Conference & Events Manager, at 419-798-4461 ext. 279 or tb*****@la**********.com.

“We’re anxious for people to know about them,” Wilkerson said. “We want to get the word out so that people will use them this summer.”

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