11 Woodland Drive: “Dune Ridge”

(taken from Catalogue for 2007 Ski Hill House Walk)

This home sits on the northeast corner of Woodland Trail and the northern end of Ski Hill Road.  It also has had a number of addresses over the years, including 1 Ski Hill Circle and 1 Ski Hill Road.  In 1936 Joseph Mahoney with the help of his father and son built this cottage/home on the dune overlooking Woodland Trail.  He named the family’s new home, “Dune Ridge.” Unlike the other homes on Ski Hill Road, this was a frame house with a basement and what was likely a garage and the bedrooms were on the second floor. The house had a screened porch, medium size living room, small kitchen, and three small bedrooms on the second floor.

Joe Mahoney was in charge of advertising and publicity for the Frederick Snite Company in Chicago.   Although the family lived full-time in the dunes for only seven years, they all were active in the Ogden Dunes community. Joe served on a number of committees for the Town Board, including the Fire Protection Committee and late on the Civil Defense Committee for the 1st Ward.   Ella was a charter member of the Woman’s Club and later active in the local Red Cross, teaching first aid classes for the local Red Cross.   She also contributed a number of poems that were published in the Sandpiper.   In 1939 the three Mahoney children were among the twenty-one from Ogden Dunes attending Portage schools.  The oldest child, Joe was in 4th grade, while the twins Joella and Jerry were in 1st grade.  Joe received recognition for perfect attendance one year and for his art work another year.  In May of 1943, Ella and the children moved to Portland, Oregon, to join their father who had taken a job relating to the war effort.   The entire Ogden Dunes community was saddened by the news that Joe had died in Alameda, California in February 1947.  In the early 1990s Joella visited her childhood home.   She recalled that “Dune Ridge” was her mother’s favorite place – “full of good and fond memories where life was the best.”  (Sandpiper, 4/28/39; 8/25/38; 8/15/39; 10/15/41; 5/10/43; 6/25/47; “’Dune Ridge’ home offers history lesson”, newspaper article by Courtney Van Lopik)

In the early 1950s Gordon Kyle owned the home.  On building a new home in the dunes in 1953, he sold the home to the Andrew and Phyllis Maclachlan.  Frank and Florence Sinkler owned the home from 1959 to 1978.   From 1978 until 1984, “Dune Ridge” was home to Kenneth and Carol Davis.   Lyle and Debra Hedman did major remodeling, creating a master bedroom suite on the second floor and adding the two car garage during the ten years, 1984-1993, that they owned the home.   They also uncovered the old, wide pine flooring.  Karen Riefe also owned the home for about ten years.  She insulated the home and added new siding and the front deck. The current owners have also done major work to the home, uncovering the fire place that had been plastered in, remodeling the entire house, and adding onto the kitchen and the second floor.