The Resort Years
Maple Hill Farm Hotel
Maple Hill Farm Hotel was located in the area that’s now the beach at Baker Park. In the early days visitors would travel to Maple Plain by train, and a horse and buggy would take them to the resort.
“At the Maple Hill Farm Resort there were 25 cabins and the hotel. The cabins were not housekeeping, only for sleeping. The meals were served at the hotel. Cost: $8.00 per week, per person for room and board.”
Credit: “History, 1868-1968, Maple Plain and Independence”, written by members of the Maple Plain Garden Club and published in 1968.
Around 1915, Maple Hill Farm was rented to Sandeen & Co. Later, the resort was often referred to as "Sandeen's", but they continued to use the name Maple Hill Farm. During the early 1940’s on Sundays, locals would join the hotel guests and cottage renters for for a chicken dinner, including dumplings and mashed potatoes, costing 75 cents.
Sandeen raised cattle, pigs and chickens on the property and the farm provided fresh food for the hotel dining room. The picnic grounds were open to the public. There was also an apple orchard on the property.
Maple Hill Farm stopped renting cottages around 1952 but continued to be a popular venue for church conventions, civic meetings and social events.
The hotel was torn down in the 1950’s when Baker Park Reserve was created. The Park Board couldn't justify the expense of renovating and maintaining the old building.