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Ely Sale Update

We quote from the Ely Chamber of Commerce web site:

It was revealed today that negotiations between Canada and Minnesota for the purchase of the town of Ely by the Province of Ontario, have hit a snag. Once believed to be an elaborate April Fool’s joke, the story has now attracted national attention. It’s now been learned that Nebraska has submitted an undisclosed bid for the town.

It has been fascinating to watch this story unfold. We’ll send more news when we get it.

BOLD TOURISM SHAKEUP: CANADA TO PURCHASE ELY, MINNESOTA Deal Could be Final by Early 2009

ELY, MINN. – April 1, 2008 – Today it was announced that Canada has made an unprecedented offer, as a boost to tourism, to purchase the famous Boundary Waters town of Ely, Minn., and relocate it north of the U.S./Canadian border.

In a prepared statement, the Premier of Ontario pledged Ely will retain its worldwide reputation as the entryway to the Boundary Waters, though now from the other side, as well as its legendary lakes, resorts, restaurants, gift shops and museums, including the world-famous International Wolf Center.

Reportedly, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources has entered into negotiations with the Minnesota DNR and the Governor’s office to arrive at a satisfactory price. Sources close to the deal say that Ely will become Ely, Ontario as early as 2009.

Minnesota residents are left wondering if this might be the last summer to enjoy the one million acres of unspoiled wilderness Ely is known for worldwide. It’ll certainly be the last summer we can spell neighbor without a ‘u,'” says Ely mayor Charles Novak. “And all the schools will have to start using zed instead of ‘z’ when they teach the alphabet, and we’ll all have to learn the value of a loonie, I guess.”

Outraged Minnesotans have launched a counterattack and are petitioning the state and considering a protest at the capitol. Interested citizens can visit ely.org or call 1-800-777-7281 to sign the petition or to volunteer for the protest, or just to book one last summer fling in Ely.

watch and listen for further updates
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