Douglas County, Minnesota, contains 250 lakes, representing 12 percent of the county’s total area, and features Minnesota’s only wine-grape appellation. Rolling hills mark the terrain.
There are 11 cities, the major one being Alexandria, the county seat. Although the land is densely populated, relatively speaking (52 per square mile), it still has adequate open space to accommodate new construction.
Snowmobiling, ice fishing and cross-country skiing highlight winter activities; golf and boating mark summers. The landscape lends itself to long bicycle tours, especially in fall when the foliage reaches peak in the woods in the east and north.
The county welcomes tourists, who come for the many lakes and resorts. Tourism events in Alexandria include a Grape Stomp every September, an Apple Fest in October, the Douglas County Fair every August and Art in the Park every July.
A city museum displays the Kensington Runestone, which some say proves that Vikings visited the area in the 14th century. Outside the museum stands Big Ole, a 25-foot-tall statue of a Viking originally built for the World’s Fair in New York in 1964.
Undeveloped but worthy land is pricey. A 23-acre site on Lake Miltona, with 400 feet of shoreline and artesian wells, was offered for $355,000. One-acre lots in Alexandria’s Pine Haven development start at $59,900.
Log Home Landscape
Lakeside cabins and woodland lodges prevail, mostly vacation homes but some primary residences.
Small-diameter round logs are popular, especially rustic-looking ones, but also some half-log homes because of the frigid winters and the desire for conventional insulation. Most logs are cedar and pine.