THERE IS A NEW BOAT IN LAKE COUNTRY THAT IS SURE TO ADD TO YOUR SUMMER FUN. Up North Paddle Pubs offers excursions on Pelican Lake, where you can consume your favorite beverage and burn those calories off at the same time. Riders face each other at a bar height table and pedal on individual cycle stations to propel a large paddlewheel at the back of the 25-foot boat. It’s a way to socialize with your friends and enjoy time on the lake.

Julie and Kate McFarland, owners of Up North Paddle Pubs, say it all began with a family tradition of staying at Breezy Point Resort for over forty years. Recently, Julie and Kate decided to purchase a cabin on Pelican Lake so their dogs could enjoy lake time too. One weekend their niece suggested getting a paddle boat to cruise around the lake, with visions of sipping on a cold beverage and taking in the sights. They thought, “Wouldn’t it be cool to be able to have one of those pedal pubs you see on the streets, only on the water?”

The seed for their business was planted. After some research, they discovered there is only one company in the world that makes these pedal/paddle boats, Cascade Cycleboats in Bend, Oregon. Julie and Kate discussed the idea with David Spizzo, assistant general manager at Breezy Point Resort, and it was agreed to dock the boat at Dockside.

The Up North Paddle Pub can ferry 14 guests with  10 pedaling stations and four non-pedaling seats. 

Julie and Kate placed their order for the boat with Cascade Cycleboats and with the boat build lead time, expected to launch their business in 2018. However, after a hurricane affected another customer, they were moved up on the list and received their boat in July 2017. While resort vacationers make up a good portion of clients, they facilitate many corporate business and group outings. Up North Paddle Pubs also donates cruises to local charities.

The paddle pub can ferry up to 14 guests. The boat has 10 pedal stations and four spots for non-pedalers. The center of the boat includes a bar with coolers to store beverages.

Take a cruise on the pedal-powered paddle boat

The Up North Paddle Pubs paddle boat is available for individual riders or book the entire boat for a private human-powered cruise on Pelican Lake in Breezy Point. Kids are welcome, with an adult and wearing a certified life jacket. The paddle boat is a great option for family get-togethers, parties and corporate outings.

Weather permitting, Up North Paddle Pubs will be offering five 90-minute cruises each day in the summer. Drinks are purchased at Dockside at Breezy Point Resort and riders may bring their own food on the boat.

Cost: $35 per person or book the entire boat for $350.

Info: 218.839.7776, or