WLA Features: Spicer
By Bailey Hovland
On a warm summer’s day, every Minnesotan knows that the best place to be is the lake. And in the Willmar Lakes Area, Green Lake functions as that hub for summer fun. Named for the jade tone of its water, Green Lake was once known as the “Gem of 10,000 Lakes” in the early 1900’s. This glacial lake, featuring a stunning shoreline of oak trees, wild grapes, and chokecherries, was pure enough to be served as water in Great Northern Railroad’s dining cars. And it was that very railroad that helped develop the lake into the tourist destination and community center it is today.
Lake goers can enjoy 5,560 acres of open green waters, both from the deck of a boat or floating the cool waters on an inner tube. And with 5 different boat launches, there are plenty of different spots to set sail. Take your friends out for a day on the lake and pass the time by fishing for walleye or sunnies. Or visit Green Lake Rentals for great prices on different watercraft, giving you and your friends the opportunity to enjoy a few hours spent balancing on paddleboards or exploring the lake via kayak. They also have rentals for the colder months, supplying ice houses to people who flock to the lake for a weekend of ice fishing.
Saulsbury Beach also offers opportunities to enjoy the freshwater lake to the public, operating as a public space for sand volleyball tournaments, pickup basketball games, and afternoon picnics. With an expansive sandy beach, the waters of Green Lake are open to all. And the lake’s sandy bottom makes Saulsbury beach the ideal local watering hole. This beach is also the center of community gatherings year-round, from the Fourth of July fireworks to the Green Lake Triathlon to Spicer Winterfest. Located near a number of area businesses and showcasing some gorgeous lake scenery, it is easy to see why Saulsbury Beach hosts everything from multi-sport races to ice castles.
And after a day spent at the lake, you can visit any one of the great local businesses nearby for dinner, drinks, or even dancing. O’Neil’s is across from Pirrotta Park and the Wildcat Cove Playground, offering more than a simple bite to eat. With an industrial-chic decor style and local owners, this restaurant is the place to be on a summer evening. Order drinks on the patio, sipping lemon drop martinis until your entrees arrive. Westwood Cafe< is just next door, featuring breakfast, burgers, and more. It’s a family-friendly restaurant with classic American food, sure to satisfy your hunger. On the opposite side of Saulsbury Beach is Zorbaz on Green Lake, where you can dock your boat while you enjoy pizza out on the patio. It’s a more relaxed location, with a mini-arcade for the kids and a karaoke machine for the off-pitch adults. With Taco Tuesdayz, Beer-of-the-Week specials, and a lit-up dance floor, Zorbaz has a little something for everyone (just like the lake it sits on).
So if you’re hot and bothered by temperatures above the 90’s, go to the lake. Planning a fun day for visiting family members? Go to the lake. Trying to figure out a place to meet for post-work drinks? Go to the lake. And by the lake, of course I mean Green Lake.
Fish our lakes
The possibilities are endless on our 30 recreational lakes…boating, swimming, fishing, water skiing, tubing, canoeing, kayaking, paddle boating, hydro biking, paddle boarding and so much more!
Explore our Trails
Surrounded by beautiful lakes and scenery…who wouldn’t take a hike or a leisurely bike ride to enjoy the view? With miles of trials to choose from, you can always find new places to explore.
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