About Chickamaw Beach
Our story starts on Norway.
Chickamaw is a word in the Ojibwe (Chippewa) language meaning ‘on the shore’. The founding fathers of the village added the word ‘beach’ and thus became the Village of Chickamaw Beach.
1950 – VILLAGE INCORPORATED
1973 – CITY INCORPORATED
2001 – 50TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION
On the Beginnings of Chickamaw Beach
From remarks delivered by former Mayor Fred Thompson on the 50th Anniversary Celebration.
In 1950, the east side of Norway Lake was in Barclay Township as it had always been. The single road around the east side of the lake was simply a dirt road and was constantly in need of repair in the summer and in need of snow removal in the winter, and seemed to be the last road to receive any service from Barclay township or Cass county. Something had to be done to remedy this situation and improve life for those of us who lived on the lake, I took it upon myself to see what could be done and incorporation seemed to me to bet the answer. As an incorporated village, we would share in the state gasoline tax and other state and county taxes. So, I retained a Brainerd lawyer to advise me as to the legalities of such a move. I then consulted with Walt Silbaugh, Del Birk, Paul Yakymi and others around the lake and they too, agreed that it was a good idea. I then had the attorney guide me through the process of incorporation with the state of Minnesota. The whole process took several months. In addition to geographical limits, the main requirement was that there must be a minimum of 125 legal residents… and here’s where it gets interesting.
We were able to count 124 full-time residents, one shy of the required number. However, Lou Yakymi was pregnant and assured me that she would deliver before the requested date of incorporation and would give us the required 125 residents. So, I had the attorney file all the required papers and in a couple of months we were an incorporated village. But Lou delivered her baby two weeks late and thus, the incorporation was, by law, illegal. I didn’t advise the Secretary of State that we only had 124 8/9 citizens and now, 50 years later, who cares?
Chickamaw Beach Today
Today, Chickamaw Beach is home to over 110 permanent residents and more when counting snowbirds and summer vacationers.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.61 mi2, of which, 2.22mi2 is land and 0.39 mi2 is water (Norway Lake).
Indian Trail Ln. sweeping alongside the shores of Norway Lake, acts as the main road for the town with Hwy 84 providing access to the western parts of the city.