Mount Telemark: Modernist Ski Resort in the Northwoods

Virtual event

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Grab your parka as we hit the slopes to celebrate Docomomo’s 2021 theme of Travel and Leisure with a virtual tour of Mount Telemark.

Join Docomomo US/MN and Docomomo US/Chicago as they explore our 2021 theme of Travel and Leisure with a virtual trip to one of the Midwest’s largest planned environmental recreational communities. Mount Telemark Ski Resort opened in Cable, Wisconsin, with three downhill ski runs in 1947. It eventually grew to include an Alpine-style chalet, a youth hostel, a two-runway airport, an 18-hole golf course, and four residential “villages,” each with a different character that reflected popular architectural styles of the 1960s and 1970s, including Swiss Chalet, A-Frame, and vernacular Scandinavian.

The crown jewel of the resort was the Brutalist-style 200-room Telemark Lodge, designed by Herb Fritz of Madison (a Frank Lloyd Wright apprentice) and Charlie Radloff of Minneapolis, with Northwoods Rustic-meets-70s-chic interiors by Darrel Howe of Los Angeles. During its heyday, the Telemark Lodge played host to fine dining, national music acts, and après ski wild nights in its discotheque.

By the 1980s, Mount Telemark was popular among competitive skiers, but attendance by casual, recreational skiers had fallen dramatically, partly due to cheaper and easier airline access to ski resorts in the Rocky Mountains. Mount Telemark struggled over the next few decades, and even appeared on the Travel Channel’s Hotel Impossible before closing for good.

Join us for an exploration of the history and architecture of Mount Telemark through a treasure trove of photos, vintage postcards, and promotional materials – many from the personal archive of the resort’s founder. This event is co-sponsored by Docomomo US/MN and Docomomo US/Chicago and presented by Justin Miller, an architectural historian at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee who has spent the past several years researching and documenting Mount Telemark.


Wed, April 21, 2021
8:00 PM – 9:00 PM EDT

$10.00 members / $15.00 nonmembers (only one ticket needed per household)
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