Projects & Sites
Major Historical Society Projects
In 1998 the Project Kaleva committee was formed to support the Brethren High School student's work helping Kaleva build community pride. Over the years Project Kaleva has worked with Service Learning Classes to restore the Railroad Depot, to restore the Asiala family log cabin and add a performance deck for outdoor concerts in a village park, to create the Kaleva Cenntenial Walkway featuring original sculptures such as the giant Grasshopper that represents the St. Urho story.
Maintained by KHS
This unique home, built in 1941 out of 60,000 glass bottles, was purchased by the Kaleva Historical Society in 1983. Click the button for more information about hours, directions and exhibits.
Project Kaleva is no longer a separate entity, but is now part of the Kaleva Historical Society and its enthusiastic volunteers continue working on various community projects such as the the Winter Solstice celebration during which over 1000 luminaries are placed on graves at Maple Grove Twp. Cemetery in Kaleva.
The first Kaleva depot was built in the late 1800s. At that time Kaleva was known as Manistee Crossings. In 1904, the original Depot burned in a major fire that destroyed much of the business district. Click the button to learn more about the Kaleva Depot.
Kaleva Beautification Team
In 2010, a group of civic minded area residents were concerned about the number of neglected properties in the village. They spearheaded a clean-up effort by targeting abandoned properties. Their next project was raising funds for the demolition of a condemned house so the property owner could donate the property to Habitat for Humanity. They recently erected beautiful new welcome signs to the village on the north, east, and west sides.
Each year, the KBT plants and maintains flower pots at each of the village welcome signs and several businesses, decorates the village with scarecrows and pumpkins in the fall and lights up the sculpture walkway for Christmas.
Created by the service learning students in 1998, this walkway extends from Nine Mile Road, north to the west side of the business district (Wuoski St.). Click to learn more about the Centennial Walkway and its beautiful sculptures.
The Eagle Park
The Eagle Park is a small little park next to a historic building where the Finnish newspaper was published in the early years. For many years it was a drug store and now is the Kaleva Art Gallery where local artisans sell their art works and homemade products. The Eagle in the park (a character from the Kalevala) was designed by Andy Priest, local artisan who helped Brethren High School Service Learning Students contruct and install the structure. Flower gardens in the park are maintained by the Kaleva Beautification Team.
The Asiala Park
Located at the corner or Wuoski and Osmo streets, the Asiala park was donated to the village by the children of Emil and Sally Asiala. At one time Emil's mother ran a bakery at this location next to the Finnish co-operative. It is the perfect place to enjoy your lunch at one of the picnic tables or just sit and enjoy the flowers maintained by the Kaleva Beautification Team.
The Finnish Line
Although the Finnish Line race does not take place any longer, for many years, it was part of Kaleva Days 2005 - 2017, which took place during the third full weekend in July. While it is part of Kaleva's rich past, we plan to continue to bring new events to Kaleva in the future.
The Asiala family cabin was brought to town and restored by the students in Service Learning Program at Brethren High School, and is maintained by the Kaleva Historical Society. The cabin was built around 1908 when the Asiala family came to Kaleva. It was originally located near Wilson Road and now sits on a lot owned by the village of Kaleva between Walta Ave and Panu Ave. Click to learn more about the history of the log cabin.
Since 1999, the community has been able to enjoy free entertainment each Friday during the month of August at 7pm.