Your Green Life: "Cabin O'Pines"

By KBJR News 1

July 24, 2014 Updated Jul 24, 2014 at 7:45 AM CDT

Orr, MN
The Coyers have been on Pelican Lake in Orr Minnesota for quite a while. What once was a little homestead is now a resort and campground.

Ross Coyer, the Manager of Cabin O'Pines told me, "They settled this property due to the homestead act in 1904 and they built a barn, they had farm land, they raised cattle and grew crops."

Ross Coyer is the 5th generation to call this place home. Just like the generations before him, he nurtures and cultivates a small plot of land.

"This garden existed for 50 years, while my great grandmother lived in the house right behind me and she gardened, that was one of her favorite things to do. She canned everything she ate." says Coyer.

Growing some of their own food is just one way they are being more sustainable. Visitors to the campgrounds also help to keep the environment clean by recycling their waste.

Coyer explained, "Plastic, glass and metal, is all kept together, and cardboard, and if they keep those four things separate from their trash, we take care of the rest."

Ross Coyer says their guests are more than willing to help keep the land clean.

"As much as we can reduce what's going into the dumpster every week is beneficial for us and very easy for our customers to do, they're always on board and willing to do that for us." says Coyer.

But now, the Coyers have moved on to a more sustainable energy source.

"Solar makes scenes because it does produce a good amount of energy for us and we think its really important to step into a reusable and renewable future and kind of be an example for other businesses and resorts."said Coyer.

A 12 by 60 foot solar array was installed just a few weeks ago and will power about a third of their peak energy uses.

Coyer said, "I think having renewable energy goes a long with being up there and thinking differently and thinking more classical about how we really should be living and what's important and where our energy comes from."

The Coyers say the solar panels will pay for its self in the next ten years. They received aide from the Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency and the panels only took 2 days to install.

Adam Lorch

CLICK HERE for more information about Cabin O'Pines Resort