THE SHED IN WARROAD, MN
The Shed is a Classic and Muscle Car Collection displayed in a 24,000 square foot building located on Hwy. 11 West, next to Lake Country Chevrolet Buick in Warroad, MN. There are 99 cars available for your viewing enjoyment. Hours vary, so please call 218-386-2211 or 218-242-1498 for availability. www.theshedwarroad.com
THE STORY: It all began in 1981 when Bob Marvin bought a ’65 Riviera –which he still owns – as a reward to himself for celebrating one year of sobriety. Like a lot of men, Bob became enamored with cars. “The uniqueness of the cars, the designs of them – that’s a part of Americana history. The more I get into it, going back 60-70 years ago, I see innovations that were new then that could be applied to today’s cars. It’s fun and a little history lesson in one of our country’s biggest industries.”
Thirty-three years and 95 cars later, Bob was faced with a storage problem. As he describes it, he was literally in a dozen different places. “Anywhere from 5-6 miles west, 5-6 miles east, and some north and south of Highway 11, they were all over the local area.” While some of the cars were in environmentally-controlled storage, most were not. As the collection grew, he knew that he needed to get his cars into a centralized, climate-controlled building. He looked around and found it difficult to choose. One day, he said to his wife, Loralee, “I need to build a shed. I need to get the cars in one spot.” In 2008, when “The Shed” was being built, people would stop in and ask to take a look and from that point on it morphed into something more.
True to the spirit of car culture, news of the Shed spread by word of mouth. “People come literally, from all over the world – Swedes, Norwegians, Germans, Italians, a kid from South America. We get an awful lot of people from Canada, just crossing back and forth and word getting around up there.” Indeed, the day I stopped in, a man from Sydney, Australia was touring, having heard about it from his friend in Steinbach, Manitoba.
Because the Shed is a private collection, there are no set hours. If you’d like to take a tour, all you need to do is “call the house” at (218) 386-2485. Bob and Loralee are also listed in the Warroad phonebook. “If you get an answering machine, just tell us who you are, what day you’re going to be there and what time, and we’ll see that it’s open.” Or you can call Rick at (218) 242-1498. You can also take a chance and just show up, but if you do, the best time to stop by is in the afternoon or evening. There is also no admission. In lieu of charging an entrance fee, Bob and Loralee invite people to leave donations for the various causes they support. They are known throughout the area as being strong advocates and supporters of many activities and organizations such as the American Cancer Society – Roseau Relay for Life, Breast Cancer Awareness , the Warroad Veterans’ Memorial, and the Warroad Walk to End Alzheimer’s.
While visitors are welcome to come through for a quick tour, what Bob really gets excited about are the cars’ stories. Out of his collection, about 80 of the cars are considered unique – meaning they might be the first one off the line – like the white 1960 Corvette with the VIN number 000001 – be a prototype, or have a unique ownership history. If you want to hear the stories behind the cars, plan to stay for an hour and a half to two hours.
“If you come to town, take time, and we’ll tell you the stories.”