More Details on Sugar Loaf Plans

Sugar LoafThe Leelanau Enterprise takes a detailed look at plans for how owner Kate Wickstrom and TC developer Doug Mansfield hope to transform Sugar Loaf Resort into the Midwest’s premiere “year-round board sport destination”.

The conceptual plan presented by Mansfield last week contains eight inter-related development projects on the 352-acre Sugar Loaf Resort property.

Mansfield said the initial phase of the project was designed to bring in “the most cash for the least outlay” by the developer, and help Wickstrom fund following phases of the project. The first phase would include development of 18 residential units along the ridgeline on Sugar Loaf Mountain, a project that Mansfield acknowledged could be the “most controversial” aspect of the overall plan.

Read Sugar Loaf Details Emerge in the Leelanau Enterprise

More Sugar Loaf stories.

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12 replies
  1. Aggie1
    Aggie1 says:

    I never imagined that this would stay this bizarre for so long.

    This is totally mind boggling.

    The day this plan gets off the ground will be the day pigs fly.

    Reply
  2. polarbear925
    polarbear925 says:

    As a former Sugarloaf employee, I sincerely hope she can pull it
    off and get the mountain up and running again.

    I had given Kate a resume’ in hopes of being a part of the revival
    of The Loaf, but never heard back. I had all kinds of ideas for
    the on-hill facilities that I wanted to pass along for
    consideration.

    Question for the sake of clarification: the proposed boarders-only terrain park area – is that
    an idea for the Lift 6 area or for the area on skier’s right of
    Lift 1? One of the ideas I had was to put a decent halfpipe in on
    the far side on Sugar Loafer.

    Would love to discuss some ideas for on-hill fixes and improvements with anyone
    that is interested in throwing ideas around. Who knows? Maybe we
    can pass our ideas along for consideration by Kate and her crew.

    Keep your tips up, friends!

    Karl K.

    Reply
  3. Bryanp
    Bryanp says:

    This is a matter of public record – so I am not revealing anything that is not known; only
    a little hidden from view. First, Kate remains in default of her debt to the sewer company
    (which is owned by the golf course owners – Brian and Ed). It amounts to about $90,000
    plus interest. Second, there is mediation taking place presently in Traverse City between
    Schmidt/Coldwell Bankers and Ms. Wickstrom over the sales commission from her purchase of
    Sugar Loaf. It seems there was a buyers contract and that she simply has decided not to
    pay the roughly $300,000 in commissions due on the sale. The impression is that she doesn’t
    have it. They don’t meet again until mid-summer. Perhaps a means of satisfying her debt
    and finding some backing for her proposed “project” is to cut Schmidt Realtors in on the
    deal and have them assist in financing the effort. More to follow. Third, I didn’t believe
    she would do it based on her word, but, we know where that has gotten us….Supposedly, this
    has already been discussed and is being seriously considered by Ms. Wickstrom. Additional
    Sugar Loaf property exists at the SE corner of Bodus and CR651, across for Sugarfoots.
    THAT is the location being proposed for her Narcon site! The cause for concern and doubt
    continues to rise. Her goodwill has evaporated and we are back to a “show-me” state.

    Reply
  4. goski
    goski says:

    Yes Aggie, truth is stranger than fiction. If anyone believes that Kate is doing this to benefit the citizens of Leelanau county and we will be skiing there next season, then I have a bridge about two hours north of here to sell you. Kate recently got huffy with an Enterprise reporter and told him that her finances were her personal business. I’ll bet Polselli thought that too, until the State of Michigan revoked his liquor license. Who would have thought that Kate would go from hero to zero in only fourteen months? Hey Kate, it’s time to flip it, please.

    Reply
  5. UP_Skier
    UP_Skier says:

    I had posted a message on a different thread a while back (before the unveiling of the plans for the ‘new and improved’ Sugar Loaf) about a new llc formed in Florida and registered in Michigan named Sugar Loaf 160 LLC. It appears to be owned by a self proclaimed real estate guru named Ron LeGrand. It was formed in November of ’05, does anybody know if this llc is connected to the golf course, or is it connected to the new plans and developements proposed for the hill and resort? It will be interesting to see how this plays out, I hope whatever happens it will be to the benefit of the people of Leelanau County.

    Reply
  6. UP_Skier
    UP_Skier says:

    Forgot to ask, does anybody know if Kate has even pursued acquiring a liquor license for the resort yet? Although I suppose that would be putting the cart before the horse since the remodeling hasn’t even started yet.

    Reply
  7. Chris Hughes
    Chris Hughes says:

    I’m not sure what to think (or wish) anymore. I have tried to remain optimistic of Kate’s intentions since she took over, thinking we were lucky she had come to the rescue. Unfortunately, the “rescue” has been cloaked in secrecy and inaction.

    As there have been as many opinions as facts to go around I thought I would report some of the latest facts:

    As of two or three weeks ago the wooded area that was the cross country ski trail “Double Dipper” in the far southern woods across the service road is now being cut down from the inside out, hidden from view. The “new” property at Bodus and 651 is also going through the same fate.

    So we must ask: why is the only action going on at Sugar Loaf for the last 16 months the destruction of priceless remote forests and trails? If someone truly wanted to reopen the resort wouldn’t they focus on getting the resort up and running first? Also, why destroy pristine forest when there is plenty of open, less wooded land available?

    One good fact is that for the first time I actually saw some workers walking around the inside last week.

    What does this all mean? That we can’t take anything for granted and that anyone who is or used to be a “Sugar Loafer” needs to get involved to make sure one of our counties greatest assets isn’t permanently destroyed by short term thinking and development. We must take the cloak off of Kate’s true plans and intentions.

    If not, it will be awful, awful to lose such a piece of our heritage.

    Reply
  8. UP_Skier
    UP_Skier says:

    I’m no longer in the Leelanau area, and don’t remember too much of the lay of the land for the resort. Regarding the area being cut, is it on the proposed site for the campground? Not that I think a campground at a SKI resort makes much sense, but it would make sense to thin an area of trees if a campground is going in. Or does it appear to be a clear-cut for a timber sale? I’d have a hard time taking anything Kate says at face value anymore, but if the current work is tree-thinning for the campground, however misguided, at least some plans would be followed through. If on the other hand it appears to be a timber sale, then it would seem that short-term cash is on the agenda. I just hope for the sake of the resort there are no mineral deposits or oil wells in the hill:)

    Reply
  9. bsisco
    bsisco says:

    After reading the history and current events of the current owner(kate)I can only hope to make a run down awful awful ever again.There are more diversified dreams than Boyne,Vail,and Intrawest combined.Without any resort management experience a co-op like Mad River would have a better chance.It’s too bad but for the near term the ‘Loaf will have to stay on the Midwest Lost Ski Area(MLSA)list.If the Big Guys are giving away golf and ski packages in northern Mi. I don’t see a woman with 25 yrs. of drug rehab experience reopening the bullwheels(or putting up a couple high speed quads)in this increasingly environmental and litigous society.In the mean time we will have to support Nubs and make a road trip to check out Bohemia.We will keep an eye on this interesting drama but the old schoolers just want to ski and make first tracks.Will always remember the Hall doubles and the aspects(exposures) of the ‘Loaf with the Lake view.I will do Homestead for a mini reminder of what used to be.B.S.

    Reply
  10. UP_Skier
    UP_Skier says:

    Bsisco, You’re more than welcome to come up to the UP for some great snow and skiing. If you’re going to do Bohemia, I’d recommend that you have your health and/or life insurance in place;) Another great hill is Marquette Mountain. They’ve done a lot of improvements the last ten years, the runs are challenging, and the views of Lake Superior and the city of Marquette from the top are gorgeous. The only draw back to UP skiing is the lift technology is a bit outdated (no high speed lifts, and very few triples or quads, but with fewer skiers on the hill that’s not a big deal).

    Does anyone know if there has been any new developements or improvements happening at Sugar Loaf?

    Reply

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