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‘Back in them days, it was acceptable,’ said Perry Wilson, who is quick to defend his friend Schlienz.

‘That's the way it was — 16-, 17-year-old girls; that was their boyfriends back then was a 25-year-old guy.’ In Grand Marais, most people know Wilson by his nickname, ‘Proof,’ short for ‘Hundred Proof’. The issue has divided people in Grand Marais, said Jane Howard, associate editor at the Cook County News-Herald.

The Department of Human Rights investigated and determined there was probable cause of discrimination by the lodge owners due to sexual orientation.

"This is the first public accommodation case for the department related to same-sex marriage, and it serves as a reminder that businesses may not deny services based on a person's sexual orientation just as they can't deny services on the basis of race or gender," Commissioner Kevin Lindsey said.

I'm a musician, having survived years of going from soloist (piano/voice) to music teacher, to choral director, to gratefully pursuing my...

I have to say, this is a story you don’t expect to hear from MPR.

Beth Kennedy has felt that way since the late 1970s, when her daughter approached high school age.

‘It wasn't that it was acceptable with all of society,’ she said of the relationships older men had with teenage girls. People knew about it, and nothing was done.’ But some men of that generation say people in the community did know that older men pursued teenage girls, and tolerated it.

The department helped negotiate a settlement in which Rice Creek agreed to pay for the couple's wedding and reception at another location as well as accommodations for out-of-town guests. The gay marriage law passed by the Minnesota Legislature in 2013 provides specific exemptions for religious entities from taking part in same-sex union, but it doesn't exempt individuals, businesses and nonprofits from non-discrimination laws based on religious beliefs regarding same-sex marriage.