Minneapolis' Nokomis Community Highlights

The Minneapolis community of Nokomis can be found in the southeastern corner of the city. It is named for its major landmark, the 204-acre Lake Nokomis. Steeped in Ojibwe Native American history, Lake Nokomis and the surrounding community was named after Hiawatha's mother, the daughter of Nokomis. You may have heard of The Song of Hiawatha, written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, which immortalizes these people in poem form. The smaller Lake Hiawatha and Diamond Lake are also located here. The presence of the lakes offers residents of the Nokomis community beautiful scenic views, as well as a variety of recreational opportunities.

Regina - The Regina neighborhood is located in the northwest corner of the Nokomis community. It is bordered by 42nd Street East to the north, Chicago Avenue to the east, 46th Street East to the south, and Interstate 35W to the west. This neighborhood was named after the Regina parochial school, which is now the home of a Head Start program and a day-care center. This residential neighborhood contains mostly small single-family houses built before 1940. However, located at 43rd Street and 4th Avenue South in the center of Regina is the Town Oaks Townhome complex. This is the largest housing complex in the neighborhood, with 112 town homes. Built in the 1970s, it is also one of Minneapolis’ first modern townhouse projects.

Northrop – In the northern part of Nokomis, just east of Regina, one can find the neighborhood of Northrop. Northrop is bounded on the east by Cedar Avenue, on the west by Chicago Avenue, on the north by 42nd Street, and on the south by Minnehaha Parkway. Like many other neighborhoods in Minneapolis, Northrop is named after an elementary school. Northrop Elementary, in turn, took its name from the second president ever to reside over the University of Minnesota, Cyrus Northrop. Homes in this area were mostly built prior to 1940. Many are two-bedroom homes made of stone, brick, and stucco. On the western boundary of Northrop at Chicago Avenue and 48th Street is an active business community, which is shared with the Field neighborhood located to the west. This busy area is home to many services, restaurants, banks, a theater and more.

Ericsson – East of Northrop, and still in the northern part of Nokomis, is the Ericsson neighborhood, which is bordered by 42nd and 43rd streets to the north, Hiawatha Avenue to the east, Minnehaha Parkway to the south, and by Cedar Avenue on the west. Minnehaha Creek runs west to east through the southern portion of the neighborhood. Lake Hiawatha to the north of Lake Nokomis is connected to the Chain of Lakes by Minnehaha Creek. The Ericsson neighborhood takes its name from John Ericsson, who was a Swedish engineer and inventor. He designed and built the U.S.S. Monitor for the United States Navy during the Civil War. This is a residential neighborhood with mainly single-family housing units. The greater part of Ericsson’s western half consists of recreational land, with Lake Hiawatha Park and Lake Hiawatha Golf Course atwo of the most prominent recreational sites here.

Field – The Field neighborhood, located south of Regina and west of Northrop, is bordered by I-35W to the west, Minnehaha Parkway to the south, Chicago Avenue on the east and 46th Street East on the north. Again, Field is named after the local school, which in this case was named after Eugene Field, a popular writer of children’s poetry. The Field business community is prosperous and thriving. Much of the housing stock here has been very well maintained. The largely residential neighborhood of Field is full of small, pre-1940s two-bedroom homes constructed with stucco, brick, and stone. As discussed in the Northrop section, Chicago Avenue is the main commercial center for Field.

Page – Directly south of Field is the Page neighborhood. Page is bound on the south by Diamond Lake Road and 55th Street, on the west by Interstate 35W, on the north by Minnehaha Creek, and on the east by Chicago Avenue. What is coming next? Oh yes, Page is named after a school. Page Elementary School was named after American editor and diplomat Walter Hines Page, who was born on August 15, 1855. The neighborhood is predominately residential, with most of the homes here having been built in the 1920s and 1930s. A majority of them are colonial in style and have two stories. At the heart of Page is the popular Pearl Park, which is commonly used for little league soccer, football, hockey and baseball.

Hale – East of Page and south of Northrop is the neighborhood we call Hale. Hale bound by Minnehaha Creek on the north, Cedar Avenue on the east, 55th Street on the south, and Chicago Avenue on the west. This mostly residential neighborhood is named after the Hale elementary school. Are you surprised? The school was named after Nathan Hale, who was an American revolutionary born in 1755 in Connecticut.

Diamond Lake – South of both Hale and Page is the Diamond Lake neighborhood. This Minneapolis neighborhood is bound by Interstate 35W and Second Avenue South on the west, by Highway 77 and Cedar Avenue on the east, by Highway 62 on the south, and by 55th Street East and Diamond Lake Road on the north. The neighborhood is named after the lake found in its western end. The northeastern tip of the Diamond Lake neighborhood connects to Lake Nokomis recreation areas and parks. The Minneapolis–St. Paul International Airport is located directly to the southwest, and the City of Richfield is directly south.

Keewaydin – South of the Ericsson neighborhood and east of Hale it the Keewaydin neighborhood. Itis bordered to the north by Minnehaha Parkway, 54th Street East to the south, Cedar Avenue South to the west, and 34th Avenue South to the east. The Keewaydin neighborhood received its name from an Ojibwe legend mentioned in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem, The Song of Hiawatha. “Keewaydin” is Ojibwe for “northwest wind,” or “the home wind.” Most of Lake Nokomis can be found within the Keewaydin neighborhood’s boundaries. Homes here are affordable, with listing prices averaging about $80,000.

Minnehaha - Minnehaha neighborhood is located in the Nokomis communinity of Minneapolis, just south of Ericsson and east of Keewaydin. The neighborhood is bound on the east by Hiawatha Avenue, on the south by 54th Street East, on the west by 34th Avenue South and on the north by Minnehaha Parkway East. Minnehaha received its name from an Ojibwe legend mentioned in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem, The Song of Hiawatha. Minnehaha means “laughing waters.” The famous Minnehaha Falls are located at Minnehaha Park in this neighborhood. Minnehaha Park is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the Minnehaha Historic District.

Wenonah - Wenonah is located south of the Keewaydin neighborhood and east of the Diamond Lake neighborhood on the very edge of Minneapolis. Highway 62 is the southern border, 54th Street is the northern border, Cedar Avenue and Lake Nokomis on the west, and 34th Avenue on the east. Beyond the main southern border, a small piece of Wenonah extends into Richfield. This neighborhood is named after Hiawatha’s mother, the daughter of Nokomis, from a legend that Henry Wadsworth Longfellow attributes to Ojibwe people in his poem, The Song of Hiawatha. Most of the single-family homes located here were built between 1920 and 1970.

Morris Park – Finally, in the far southeastern corner of the Nokomis community, and the City of Minneapolis, is the neighborhood known as Morris Park. The Twin Cities Air Force Reserve Base makes up its border to the south, 54th Street is its northern border, 34th Avenue is its western extent, and 46th Avenue runs along its eastern edge (and the city boarder). The neighborhood took its name from the daughter of Franklin Steele, Mary C. Morris. Franklin Steele was the first European-American settler on the east bank of the Mississippi River in what used to be St. Anthony, now part of Minneapolis. He also donated land to the University of Minnesota. A majority of the single-family homes in Morris Park were also built between 1920 and 1960.

Nokomis is largely residential, but there are a few commercial districts scattered throughout the community and near Lake Nokomis. As in many Minneapolis communities, the size and style of homes in Nokomis can depend on their location and distance from the lakes. Homes closer to the water tend to be older and larger, while homes further away were built more recently and smaller. Regardless of their size or age, most of the homes are neat and well-maintained. Generally, many single-family houses were built prior to 1940 and made of stucco, brick and stone. There are some townhomes and condos available here if you search, however.

In June 2007, the average price of a single family home or condo sold in the Nokomis community of Minneapolis, MN was $234,666.

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