LIVE: Pandemic Cuts Off Northwest Angle From Rest Of U.S.
Resorts Seeing 90% Drop In Business During Pandemic
Part of our region is essentially cut off from the rest of the United States because of the pandemic, and businesses there are suffering.
Minnesota’s Northwest Angle in Lake of the Woods County isn’t connected to the rest of the U.S. by land.
To get to the popular fishing destination in a car you have to go into Canada first.
But the border is closed to all but essential traffic during COVID-19.
Joe Henry with Lake of the Woods Tourism says the dozen or so resorts on the Angle have seen business drop off by about 90% this summer.
The only way people can get to the angle and stay in Minnesota is by crossing Lake of the Woods, which Henry says is a tough sell.
He adds, “That’s about a 40+ mile trip across great big waters of Lake of the Woods. It’s a great lake. It’s a small ocean. Not everybody has the boats to do that. There’s safety concerns. People don’t feel comfortable doing it. A lot of times when you go on a trip you got people and gear.”
Henry says he’s been talking to elected leaders about getting loans specifically for resort owners in the Angle. He says they’re worried that customers they lose this year may find other places to vacation on the mainland and never come back.
Check out the interview above for more on the unique problem facing the Angle.