Saturday August 26, 2017
4:00 PM

Camping Cocktail

Butternut Estate (aka Sarah’s parents’ home)
7670 Butternut Road, Virginia, MN 55792

We’ll have a brief dramatic re-enactment of our nuptials at 4pm.
Dinner will be served at 5pm.
Games, music, campfire until midnight.

We are not registering anywhere – we just want you to picnic with us!
If you would like to contribute something, please consider making a donation to one of our favorite organizations.

Join us camping overnight (Friday and/or Saturday) if you please! You can arrive to the location starting at 5pm on Friday (just know we’ll probably be busy getting things set up on Saturday morning/early afternoon). We’ll have limited camping gear to share, but please bring your own if you have it.

The camping will be in Sarah’s parents’ yard. We’ll have a campfire (conditions permitting). Potable water, refrigeration, bathrooms are available. Cell service can be spotty unless you’re on Verizon. We’ll provide dinner and drinks on Saturday, but don’t have any other shared meals planned (yet). Expect mosquitoes.

If camping isn’t your idea of fun, check into these lodging options:

There are some Airbnb options in the area, including a cute farmhouse on a horse ranch very near to the picnic site, for $95 / night.

Lakeshor Motor Inn
Rooms starting at $70. 9 miles from the picnic.
In between two lakes, pet-friendly, kitchenettes.
In a motel with views of the world’s largest floating loon, how could you go wrong?

AmericInn Lodge and Suites – Virginia
Rooms starting at $130. 10 miles from the picnic.
Pool, hot tub, sauna. Sarah used to waitress at the bar next door.

Mountain Iron Holiday Inn
Rooms starting at $150. 11 miles from the picnic.
Pool, hot tub, gym.
Just 11 miles from Kinney, which attempted to secede from the US in 1977, to try to fix its water system.

Fortune Bay Casino and Resort
Rooms starting at $150. 20 miles from the picnic.
Casino, golf, marina, live music, pool, hot tub.
Four miles away, Sarah’s grandpa grew up on Lost Lake, which is now a preserve aimed at protecting wildlife like the American bog rush.

Parking is very limited at Butternut Estate, so please carpool if possible. Please watch your email in August for more information about parking and picnic logistics.

Please don’t drink and drive! Everyone is welcome to camp overnight. We’ll have some camping gear to loan out, but please bring yours with you if you have it.

If you don’t want to camp but want to drink, please arrange a sober driver. Some cab companies serve the area (see below), but they are not always available.
C & M Taxi: 218.749.4000
Quad City Cab: 218.749.5000




  • The World’s Largest (Freestanding) Hockey Stick!: 6000 pounds of pure joy. Nearby is the US Hockey Hall of Fame.
  • Soudan Underground Mine Tour: Travel a half-mile underground in a cage – perfect for claustrophobes! Also, for the last 35 years, this has been the location of experiments to study neutrinos and dark matter.
  • International Wolf Center: Jason’s last name is Wolfe; this is a mandatory stop. The North American Bear Center is next door.
  • Leonidas Overlook: Our picnic is taking place on top of one of the world’s largest deposits of iron ore (created by the erosion of mountains and oxidation by algae). See what it looks like when you remove 24 million tons of ore from the ground.

There is lots of outdoor area to explore!  The Boundary Waters Canoe Area, the Mesabi Bicycle Trail, and endless lakes. Check here for more ideas.