Eagle River has seen a lot of changes since the late 1800’s. It has transformed from a logging and mill town into one of Wisconsin’s best-known tourist destinations. While much has changed about this community, they are still able to honor the past thanks to the White Spruce Inn.
The building was constructed as a log cabin in the late 1800’s where early settlers to the area lived while they ran a store nearby. Descendents of the original family who lived in the home still come to enjoy the restaurant.
Jon Cook’s father was born inside the log cabin back in 1900. Today, Cook is a frequent customer at the restaurant, where he has a chance to appreciate his family’s heritage, all while enjoying a good meal with friends.
When people ask him about his family legacy, Cook is quick to point out to them that the building has not always been a supper club.
“When I tell them that my dad had been born in the White Spruce building, one of the ladies said, how come he was born in a restaurant?” Cook says.
The building has been home to a supper club for at least the past sixty years. While it has seen several different owners, it has stayed true to its heritage.
The current owner is Ed Blankinship, who took over in 2012. The UP native moved up from the Chicago area in order to buy the restaurant. While he had never owned or run a restaurant before, he was confident he would be able to carry on the legacy.
“I’ve just tried to fix things and clean them up.” Blankinship jokes.
Whether you come to enjoy the delicious steaks and seafood, or you come to savor the restaurant’s rich history, The White Spruce Inn is truly a Northwoods gem worth checking out.
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