Trudi Marx Marquardt grew up on a farm on the western shore of the lake. His parents bought the 160-acre property in 1949 and raised nine children on his brick farm built in the early 1900s.
They sold 120 acres to the county in 2005 to create the Mud Lake Wildlife Area, and Marquardt bought 37 acres from his mother in 2015, 22 of which were underwater. Of the remaining 15 acres, only about five acres remain dry. The silo is surrounded by water, the barnyard is now home to largemouth bass, and the farm was moved in October to a new foundation on higher ground. A new driveway, over a quarter of a mile long, was also needed and built by the county to provide access to the farm off Haas Road.
In April, Marquardt, 62, created a Facebook group, Friends of Fish & Mud Lakes, to draw attention to current issues.
“We need attention to take action,” said Marquardt. “I am sad to see how much we have lost our farm. It breaks my heart. I lost my neighbors, I lost my way, we lost everything we thought we had in retirement.
For the Watson, Marc Watson’s grandparents had a trailer on the lake just east of the dance hall. His parents bought the trailer in the 1980s, and he and Margie bought the trailer in the 1990s.
They maintain a long friendship with Ganser, who died in April, which leads them to buy the old dance hall built in the 1930s, closed for years. The Watson’s paid $ 150,000 for the 6,300 square foot building and 6-acre property and invested an additional $ 200,000 in it over the years.