Awards & Accolades

The communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, Grand Portage, and the Gunflint Trail have earned numerous accolades, and for good reason!  Not only is Cook County rich in scenery and natural beauty, it is even richer in local culture, with vibrant arts, music, entertainment, and theater scenes, and year-round festivals, events, and outdoor recreation.  

Put all of these elements together, add a strong sense of community and caring, and you have just some of what makes Cook County such a special place, and so deserving of the awards and accolades highlighted below.

America's Best Small Lake Town

Travel & Leisure - America's Best Small Towns 2023

Aerial photo of Grand Marais above Artist's Point

Grand Marais

Best Midwestern Small Town: Grand Marais, Minn.

USA Today 10BEST - Readers Choice 2017

Sailboats in the Grand Marais Harbor

Grand Marais

The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S.

Outside Magazine 2016

Sweetheart's Bluff in Grand Marais

Grand Marais

America's Coolest Small Town

Budget Travel - Reader's Choice 2015

Grand Marais Harbor 2 lighthouses and Hjordis sailboat

Grand Marais

25 Amazing Journeys for 2022

National Geographic 2022

Lit tent next to lake with northern lights in the sky

Northern Minnesota & Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness

Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness Named the Largest Dark Sky Sanctuary

DarkSky International 2020

Northern Lights over a Lake Superior

Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness 

The Chamber understands the value of recognizing the businesses and individuals that stretched the extra mile to deliver services and remain viable. Business awards are annually…