Region: Keweenaw Peninsula
|The remains of a little barn on Misery Bay Road, a frequent sight in the area. Finns made a living on these farms, miniscule by today's standards.|
Toivola is a former logging camp and stop on the old Copper Range Railroad. In Finnish, Toivola means "city of hope." Today it's a dispersed rural community, spread out, but with a strong sense of identity. As late as the 1940s, in the last years of the Finnish subsistence farm era, Toivola numbered nearly 500. The post office and the lively Toivola Lunch restaurant are on M-26, but most of the close-in part of town, with an active ball diamond, are along Misery Bay Road north of the highway. The Heikkinen School, restored by a local couple, is a few miles farther north.
|Neighboring villages Toivola and Twin Lakes share this little post office in Toivola.|
Misery Bay Road leads to Agate Beach on Misery Bay, one of the Keweenaw's magical, tucked-away spots, with agate beaches and a 25-site primitive campground. A bonfire — sometimes a raucous bonfire — is held there on Juhannes, St. John's Day, the old Scandinavian feast day near the summer solstice. Since 1994, the Agate Beach Acoustic Jamboree has been held, spearheaded by two local musicians.
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