Minnesota Flyer - Serving Midwest Aviation Since 1960

Airport of the Month Project Spotlight

Detroit Lakes - a new runway


November 1, 2020

Photos courtesy of Mark Hagen, Detroit Lakes/Becker County Airport

The runway at Detroit Lakes Airport.

In the early 1800s a Catholic Priest mistook a lake for a something else and named a place in Minnesota using the French word "detroit" (that means straight or channel). Soon a village had sprung up with that name and was a waypoint on the Red River Ox Cart Trail. Incorporated in 1881, Minnesota's Detroit became the seat of Becker County. Eventually the citizens got tired of their mail ending up in Michigan, organized a referendum in 1926 and corrected the "clerical" error by changing the town's name to Detroit Lakes.

About the time of the referendum, a pasture just west of town becam...

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