Heartwood Conference Center sells to new owner

Heartwood Resort & Conference Center in Trego has a new name and a new owner. Previously owned by Thrivent Financial and formerly known as Heartwood Conference Center and Retreat, the resort now belongs to business owner Mark Wallskog and two Twin Cities-area long time real estate investors. Wallskog also owns a large national hospitality services company that works with all the hotel brands.

“The mission of Heartwood remains the same,” Wallskog said in a news release. “I hope that the resort continues to grow as a place for family and friends to gather together – an environment where everyone feels welcome. I also want people that are visiting the area to experience everything that this amazing region has to offer.”

Wallskog is a Minnesota born and raised resident whose family purchased a cabin on Big Bear Lake in Burnett County about 15 years ago. Burnett County soon became a home away from home for the family. Wallskog currently co-owns Bump’s Lakeside and Devil’s Lake Resort in Webster, as well as Big Bear Lake Condos in Webb Lake.

“One thing I’ve always admired about northwest Wisconsin is that when you pay a visit to one of the local businesses you almost always see the owner out and about chatting with customers and serving others. It’s unlike any other place in the world. I hope to operate this tremendous resort with that same commitment and presence,” Wallskog said.

The 700 acres of natural woodlands in Trego serves as a gathering place to host a business retreat, a romantic setting to exchange vows, and the place to be if you’re looking to grab a quick bite to eat.

“I am incredibly humbled and grateful to have the opportunity to build our business on such a solid foundation,” Wallskog said. “Thrivent and their resort management team have been wonderful to work with during this transition and I look forward to our staff continuing to create memorable guest experiences! Hopefully we will create an abundant amount of new family stories like I’ve been able to be a part of for our family”.

Thrivent Financial has spent the last 14 years.

“The property has significant improvements, all maintained immaculately. I’m truly looking forward and excited to continue to provide such great facilities to our guests,” he said. “There are so many activities onsite at the resort and in the immediate area, our family has been up in the area for the last 14 years and we still have more to experience!”

The management team plans to keep the same staff that Thrivent originally hired, stating that, “The management team and staff are very skilled, have experience offering guests platinum service and are very loyal to the property.”

Wallskog’s goal is to create a premier destination that will draw visitors to come and experience all that the Northwoods has to offer.

“We look forward to packaging a full Northwoods experience, encouraging our guests to enjoy the abundant selection of activities onsite at Heartwood and in the area at neighboring businesses. We are excited to share the best area fishing and trail guides, top golf courses, lake view taverns, ATV/UTV area trails & rentals and more for our guests. Whether you are visiting Heartwood for a wedding, a meeting, a conference, a weekend or simply having dinner at Pine Lodge Restaurant; we want you to enjoy all of the Northwoods fun,” said Wallskog.