MAY 2022 UPDATE: Catch up on the latest news from the Steamboat Minnehaha! CAD Scanning project, Year-End Financial, Funding Bill, and more… Newsletter
We regret to pass along the news that MLM Hall of Fame member Bob Woodburn passed on April 10th. Bob served as an original board member of the Steamboat Division of the Minnesota Transportation Museum in 1990 and as Secretary until 1996. Bob was actively involved in many aspects of Minnehaha’s restoration – most notably the electrical and mechanical systems. Bob’s work didn’t stop there – he worked on the ribs, planking, and keel/keelson. He was also deeply involved in the engine/boiler/stack and other mechanical projects. Bob oversaw materials acquisition and managed design approval. Simply put, Bob was integral in every aspect of the boat’s restoration. Bob’s service continued through the years following the restoration and his passionate support of Minnehaha never wavered. He was elected into MLM’s Hall of Fame in 2019.
The Board of Directors extends its sincere condolences to the Woodburn family and salutes Bob for all his contributions to the restoration and operation of Minnehaha. His support and encouragement will be greatly missed.
The family plans to announce memorial arrangements at a later date.
Published by THE MUSEUM OF LAKE MINNETONKA
…a nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation
P.O. Box 178 | Excelsior, MN 55331
(952) 474-2115 (voice messages only)
MARCH 2022 UPDATE: Catch up on the latest news from the Steamboat Minnehaha! (A lot is going on behind the scenes!) Newsletter
The streetcar steamboat Minnehaha, a longtime icon of the Lake Minnetonka community, was officially added to the National Register of Historic Places on Friday, October 29. Administered by the National Park Service, the National Register of Historic Places is the official list of the nation’s historic places worthy of preservation.
“Minnehaha’s listing in the National Register opens up grant opportunities to preserve the boat and gives her the recognition she deserves,” said Tom McCarthy, president of the Museum of Lake Minnetonka, the organization that owns, maintains and operates the vessel.
In 2019, Minnehaha lost access to the ramp where she was launched and hauled out of the water each spring and fall, restricting her ability to be on the lake until a new ramp becomes available. Minnehaha is currently housed in a heated storage facility in Excelsior. Volunteers continue to maintain the vessel on a weekly basis, keeping her ship-shape for her eventual return to Lake Minnetonka.
“The MLM remains committed to returning Minnehaha to the waters of Lake Minnetonka,” said McCarthy, adding that the organization has a newly reconstituted leadership team in place. “While no property on Lake Minnetonka meeting Minnehaha’s unique launch requirements is currently available, we welcome any opportunity to work with public or private partners to secure a site for Minnehaha’s new launch ramp and winter home – both of which will be crucial to getting her back in the water since Minnehaha must be stored indoors during the winter.”
Earlier this year, the MLM received notice that Minnehaha will no longer be granted access to the privately-owned launch site at 600 West Lake Street, Shorewood after December 31, 2019. The launch site is only used twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall, for the sole purpose of launching and hauling Minnehaha in and out of the water. Since this is a critical component of Minnehaha’s operation, a new launch site is needed.
Minnehaha is typically launched in the water in May and hauled out in October. While in the water, she is stored at a leased dock slip on Excelsior Bay (687 Excelsior Boulevard, Excelsior). The MLM is guaranteed to keep this slip through 2023.
During the winter months, Minnehaha needs to be stored indoors so that she can be properly preserved and rehabilitated. Minnehaha is currently stored in a large pole barn structure at 140 George Street, Excelsior. This structure is owned by the MLM but sits on land owned by the Hennepin County Regional Railroad Authority.