Finders Keepers scrapbook

The plot for Finders Keepers is fiction, but the places are not.

My parents bought a cabin near Hayward, Wisconsin nearly 30 years ago. Immediately I thought the setting would be perfect for a kids’ novel. I began to think about the characters of Christa, Alex and Grumpa and the adventures they might have together.

On one of my visits, my parents took me to the Northwoods vacation-land getaway of infamous gangster Al Capone. He’s one of Chicago’s most famous crooks from the Prohibition era, and his vacation home isn’t far from my parents’ cabin. We toured the property, which includes a lake (He owned an entire lake!), a beautiful house, separate garages, and a guard tower.

I read about Capone and learned many people think he hid money in Chicago and Wisconsin’s northwoods before he got arrested.

Capone. Hidden treasure. The beautiful northwoods lakes. The bustling town of Hayward. I had the elements I needed for Finders Keepers.

Check out some photos that inspired the story!

Here’s the front of my parents’ cabin. I envision Christa’s cabin much like this, only bigger. It’d be hard for a family of four to spend an entire summer in a small cabin, right?

 

CabinExterior

 

Here’s my parents’ boat on Whitefish Lake, the setting for Christa’s cabin. That’s my husband and father.

LakeBoat

 

Here’s the boat landing on Whitefish Lake where I imagined Amelia taking out Sheriff Duncan. (No, that’s not an actual sheriff with his hands in the air. It’s a random guy signaling his buddy to get the boat in the water.)

LakeBoatLanding

 

Main Street, Hayward, Wisconsin.

HaywardMainSt

 

The candy store in Hayward where the fudge lady works. It’s one of Christa’s favorite places in town. (Mine,too.)

HaywardInsideCandyStore

 

The Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame and Museum in Hayward. You can stand in the mouth!

HaywardFishMuseum

 

The Moccasin Bar in Hayward inspired Grumpa’s taxidermy.

HaywardMoccasin

 

Check out the taxidermy displayed in the Moccasin bar. Here’s the first:

BestTaxidermy.jpb

 

Here’s the second:

GroupTaxidermy

 

Finally, check out Al Capone’s secret getaway. Sadly, it’s no longer open for tours.

TougasHideaway

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s