Telemark Sold But Future Still Unknown

Posted at: 10/15/2013 11:51 AM | Updated at: 10/15/2013 6:11 PM
By: Jon Ellis & Maarja Anderson

A Colorado-based company has purchased Telemark Resort in Cable, which has been closed since last spring.

Newco, LLC purchased Telemark with a $926,000 bid during a sheriff's sale Tuesday.  A former employee submitted the bid on Newco's behalf.  The company put down $85,000 on the purchase.

James Bolen, executive director of the Cable Area Chamber of Commerce, said their bid came as a surprise.

"We will have to wait and see what happens. I spoke to the bidders after they purchased it and had some discussions with them. We will be meeting them with them in the next couple days," said Bolen.

The auction came after a Bayfield County judge ruled in favor of Great Southern Bank in Telemark Resort's foreclosure proceedings in August.

Bolen and other local tourism leaders had thought the bank would buy back the resort at the sale and then turn around and sell it to a group with plans to reopen the resort with a relationship with the US Olympic Committee.

"The question is what they intend to do with it, they may not reopen the facility," said Bolen.

The resort's many stakeholders, such as the American Birkebeiner, are now under new direction.

"We have a 40 year history with Telemark...and for the past couple years we've been trying to secure a permanent start area at Telemark," said John Garrett with the American Birkebiener Ski Foundation at the sheriff's sale.

Mary Lou Baribeau owns two of the condos in the resort. She came to the auction to see the outcome. It's her favorite vacation spot, but she said to see it now is heartbreaking.

"The fence is away from the pool...and somebody went into the office and literally tore it apart," said Baribeau.

According to court documents, a former resort managing partner said the resort's electricity was shut off around March 23 or 24.  The resort closed for what it called "spring cleaning" but never reopened.  A sign saying the resort was to have reopened in mid-May remains on the door.

Newco hasn't said what they plan to do with the resort, but Bolen said they will have discussions this week about possible plans.

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