Dick Morris and Dan Morsette from Taconite Lodge and Fortitude Lodge, respectively, attended the weekly fishing event at Legacy Lake with veterans from the Silver Bay Veterans Home this past week. Joining them were the owner’s of the property, Bob and Dianne Buus, Rick Iszler, and several volunteers from the area.
Some of those volunteers have been donating their time at Legacy Lake for over 12 years, like Paul Hartshorn. Paul, a veteran himself, was assisting one of the veterans when they reeled in the first fish of the year, a 3.5 lb. rainbow trout (see photo). It’s unknown who was more excited about catching the fish, Paul or the fisherman. Other volunteers include Jim and Cheri Bischoff, Ron VanBergen, Steve Thorp, Dan Waxlax, and Tosha Rohloff from the MN Veterans Home.
The largest fish caught on this “fishing opener” was a 4.2 lb., 20 inches long Rainbow. Fifteen fish were caught and cleaned for the smoker while 25 more fish were caught and released back into Legacy Lake. All those fish were caught in only two hours of fishing. Local volunteer “Finn” from Finland will smoke the fish for the veterans to snack on next time they’re back at the lake.
New to the Legacy Lake are emblems of all the military branches of the armed services, mounted on poles along with the American flag. (see photo)
A brief history of Legacy Lake
Larry Schanno wanted Legacy Lake to be his LEGACY. In 2008/2009 the lake came to be. It was formerly a holding pond for livestock years back when the area was use as a farm. Charlie Mattson was then the resident of the property. Larry immediately restored Charlie Mattson’s hand-made stone cellar as a tribute to Charlie Mattson’s legacy. It was determined that the location of the pond (Legacy Lake) had been diked up to hold water for livestock. It is spring fed and is approximately 53 degrees F entering the excavated area. Ideal water temperature for the trout that has been introduced since May 2009. With the cooperation of the DNR and the help of local business owners, the pond came to be known as “Jake Lake” originally. Stocked with brook trout “500 fingerlings” in May 2009, the wheels of Larry Schanno’s dream to have a fishing pond to share with veterans and others started in motion.
In 2013, Larry Schanno asked his friends for assistance; Robert (Bob) and Dianne (Di) Buus, Richard (Rick) Iszler (all Board of Directors and Owners), and the Legacy Homestead, LLC was formed. Larry’s enthusiasm to pay back to all veterans was contagious in the community and Thursdays became the day of the week for having the vets out to the lake.
Many veterans have enjoyed catching trout (brook and rainbow) at Legacy Lake. Some of these veterans are in wheelchairs or walkers (impaired but not disabled). The veterans are brought to Legacy Lake from the Silver Bay Veterans Home and park near the pond. However, the area was prone to rain and moisture on primarily clay soil, which made the maneuvering of the chairs difficult. A number of local volunteers, many of which are veterans, assisted as best they could through uneven terrain and often muddy conditions. Taconite Lodge and Fortitude Lodge, along with Sinnott Contracting and the property owners eventually had blacktop placed to make it more accessible for all.
After the passing of Larry Schanno, Taconite Lodge and Fortitude Lodge placed a sign at Legacy Lake in his memory and “Legacy”.