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Alaska Girl Turned Minnesota Nice

Kista Brunkhorst, owner of Susan Longstaff Whitefish creates whimsical, color-filled quilts from her Lodge, Crosslake home in Backus. and Manhattan Beach Lodge. Last summer she exhibited her creations at Ripple River Gallery, near Bay Lake.



hen you are approached by someone who works in the housekeeping department of a lodge, and they suggest you write about their boss because

she’s so terrific and kind to staff... it says a lot about that boss. Kista Brunkhorst, owner of Whitefish Lodge in Crosslake, and now, also owner of Manhattan Beach Lodge, is that person.

Originally from Anchorage, Alaska, Kista never envisioned leaving Anchorage. Then she met Minnesota-born Jason at a hockey game in Alaska and he stole her heart. They married in Crosslake in 1999, where one of Jason’s best friend’s family had a cabin. After working and living in the Twin Cities for a few years and spending several weekends each summer in Crosslake, they moved to the Crosslake area after their daughter Emily was born in 2002. 32Fall FALL her voice 32 20162016 | her| voice

Jason, with several years of construction experience, started his business Cabin Country Builders, LLC. Kista worked in real estate, and when they hosted a large family Christmas, finding extra lodging for the family proved to be a challenge. “I told Jason, ‘this town really needs a hotel.’ He agreed and said he should build it and I should run it. I thought he was nuts!” Kista looked for commercial property and found the perfect spot in part of Crosslake

Her Voice Magazine Fall 2016  

Straw Bale Gardening: While she downplays her gardening acumen, Mary Aalgaard gives a thorough how-to on straw bale gardening. • Ladies in...