With longer days and extra sunshine, people are out and about, enjoying what makes the Twin Cities so special. The Berg Larsen Group has been working with clients to buy and sell their homes in neighborhoods across the Twin Cities for decades. The knowledge that we have of these areas extends beyond our work, as many people on our team live in these neighborhoods. Our summer blogs will highlight several of the distinct neighborhoods throughout the metro area.
We asked our Kenwood local, business partner and licensed realtor Kate Wall, why she chose to live in the neighborhood, and why she continues to love it after all these years.
Kenwood’s Rich History
Kenwood is nestled between the Minneapolis Chain of Lakes. Only a few miles from downtown, it is home to Kenwood Park, Kenwood elementary school, and a handful of small businesses. The neighborhood was created around 1887, and its proximity to a former rail line and the city drew people toward the development. The 1910 brick water tower on Kenwood Parkway and the Peavey Fountain on West Lake of the Isles Parkway are testaments to Kenwood’s rich history.
A Little Bit of Everything
Kate’s historic home was built in 1909. Although architecture and styles differ, most homes in the neighborhood are more than 100 years old. New construction is rare, as The Kenwood Homeowners Association ensures the historical preservation of the homes in the neighborhood. Residing in a mix of single-family homes and duplexes, the residents of the area range in age, lifestyle, and family size.
Buying or selling a Kenwood home tends to be a quick process, especially if the house has undergone recent renovations. The neighborhood’s proximity to downtown Minneapolis, the Chain of Lakes, and easy highway access make for a truly coveted location. As construction continues on the Southwest Light Rail Transit project, Kenwood’s convenience will only grow.
“Winter, spring, summer, fall - you can do it all!” says Kate.
The summer fun in Kenwood is endless. It is common to see people carrying their kayaks down to the water or families biking to school. With people working in their gardens and children playing in the yard, there is a strong sense of community and friendship. Live music events, neighborhood cookouts, and free yoga classes at Cedar Lake East Beach mean there is always something to look forward to. Learn more about upcoming neighborhood activities on Kenwood’s website.
Even in the winter, people are cross-country skiing through the streets and gathering by Lake of the Isles for the Luminary Loppet. Equipped with a warming house, plenty of rinks for pickup games, and lights for after-dark, skating at Lake of the Isles is a seasonal signature. Neighborhood kids head to the hills of Kenwood Park, enjoying a winter wonderland of sledding and snowball fights. For three decades, neighbors from Kenwood, East Isles, and Lowry Hill have gathered at Lake of the Isles for the Palio Winter Games - a day of skating, arts and crafts, and friendly rivalry.
Kate emphasizes that “it’s hard to duplicate what we have here.”
Find What’s Right For You
Kenwood is one of a kind, as is each of the Minneapolis neighborhoods. Immediately east, there is the Lowry Hill neighborhood, which has a completely different feel. This neighborhood is renowned for its boulevard design, large lawns, and spacious two-and-a-half-story homes that include considerably sized porches. While still having the lakes a short distance away, you are central to Hennepin Avenue, Thomas Lowry Park, and the Walker Art Center’s sculpture garden. Read about the neighborhood and all that it has to offer on its official website.
Just north of Kenwood across 394 is Bryn Mawr, a neighborhood full of cute coffee shops and home to the beautiful Theodore Wirth Park. Originally developed as farmland in the mid-1800s, this neighborhood is surrounded by over 650 acres of lakes, parks, and trails. Bryn Mawr’s farming history continues today, as residents are known to be passionate gardeners. The neighborhood’s next annual Garden Tour is coming up this summer, so make sure to stop by and smell the roses! For more information on Bryn Mawr, visit its Neighborhood Association’s website.
The uniqueness of neighborhoods isn’t exclusive to Minneapolis, rather it expands into the suburbs where cities like Edina and St. Louis Park are full of their own recognizable communities. (Our July and August blogs will feature these wonderful areas.)
Kate is enthusiastic: “We’re so lucky in the Twin Cities that we have all of these different neighborhoods. They all have their own spirit and hidden little gems that you won’t know about until you live there.”
The Berg Larsen Group always recommends that you spend some time in the areas where you think you would like to live. Kate suggests visiting at different times of the day, week, and year to take notice of what people are doing.
With all of the variety that Minneapolis neighborhoods have to offer, Kate assures us that, “There’s a place for everyone.”
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