Wife of billionaire slams locals in Minnesota beach town for daring to question her plans after snapping up multiple properties – and says they can forget about getting a new pickleball complex now!

Photo of author
Written By Maya Cantina
  • Kathy Cargill fired back at the ‘small-minded community’ of Duluth, MN
  • Locals demanded to know her plans for a real estate spending spree in the area  
  • The billionaire heiress has now rolled back plans to modernize the town  

A billionaire heiress took revenge on locals who questioned her plans for their sleepy Lake Superior neighborhood by rolling back plans to modernize their community. 

Kathy Cargill, the wife of James R. Cargill II, the patriarch of the fourth-richest family in the US, has sparked controversy among residents in Duluth, Minnesota after snapping up a number of homes in the area.  

Cargill has been accused of bulldozing them while refusing to reveal her plans – and not without offending locals, as she branded the homes ‘pieces of cr**’ to a local reporter. 

But after residents sounded the alarm and the new mayor demanded Cargill revealed her intentions, she fired back by calling off plans to construct a sports complex and beautify the area. 

‘I think an expression that we all know—don’t pee in your Cheerios—well, (the mayor) kind of peed in his Cheerios right there, and definitely I’m not going to do anything to benefit that community,’ she told the Wall Street Journal. 

‘The good plans that I have down there for beautifying, updating and fixing up Park Point park or putting up that sports court, forget it. There’s another community out there with more welcoming people than that small-minded community.’

Kathy Cargill has bought multiple homes in Park Point, Minnesota, but rolled back plans to beautify and modernize the community after locals questioned her real estate spending spree 

One of the homes bought by Cargill, 4202 Minnesota Ave (pictured), was purchased for $2.5million and is being renovated

One of the homes bought by Cargill, 4202 Minnesota Ave (pictured), was purchased for $2.5million and is being renovated 

Many of the homes have been snapped up well above market price. Cargill bought 1223 Minnesota Av (pictured) for $350K - over 100k over appraisal value

Many of the homes have been snapped up well above market price. Cargill bought 1223 Minnesota Av (pictured) for $350K – over 100k over appraisal value

Ten of the homes bought by Cargill are seen tightly bunched together on this graphic, with a median price of about $477,000

Ten of the homes bought by Cargill are seen tightly bunched together on this graphic, with a median price of about $477,000

In total, Cargill has reportedly bought 20 homes and parcels of land in the area, snapping many of them up for way above market value. 

‘It’s just so sudden,’ Dawn Buck, president of the Park Point Community Club, told the Wall Street Journal. 

‘What happens is the house closes, then immediately the survey stakes go up and within a week the utilities are cut off and then real soon, here comes a bulldozer. Someone somewhere has a plan.’ 

Alongside her real estate spending spree, Cargill is also known for her love of McLaren supercars, which sell for over $1 million each. Her husband’s inherited net worth reportedly stands around $4.2 billion. 

Rumors quickly spread among the community that Cargill was intending to bulldoze the area to create a gated community for the uber-rich. 

Many jumped at the arrival of a billionaire looking to part with her cash. But those looking to stay in their scenic Lake Superior homes feared it threatened their taxes and local housing supply, sparking a small revolt in the quiet town. 

Led by the newly elected mayor of the city of 86,000, Roger Reinert, locals demanded to know what Cargill intended to do next.

‘The plan for these properties is unknown, and that is concerning to many, including me,’ Reinert said on social media, as he urged constituents not to continue selling to Cargill. 

That led Cargill to fire back with her ‘pee in your Cheerios’ jibe, as she rolled back pledges to spruce up the community. 

 

Many of the properties have already been torn down and locals worry what will be put up instead. A vacant lot at 1314 Minnesota Ave, Duluth seen above

Many of the properties have already been torn down and locals worry what will be put up instead. A vacant lot at 1314 Minnesota Ave, Duluth seen above

1239 Minnesota Av was bought for $500K, although it was appraised at $239.5K

1239 Minnesota Av was bought for $500K, although it was appraised at $239.5K

Park Point residents have expressed concern both about rising property taxes and over what exactly will be built in the place of the homes. Cargill purchased 1221 Minnesota Av for $300K

Park Point residents have expressed concern both about rising property taxes and over what exactly will be built in the place of the homes. Cargill purchased 1221 Minnesota Av for $300K

She reportedly claimed that she was still getting calls from locals looking to cash in on their homes, and hasn’t ruled out more purchases.

But she told the community they can ‘forget’ a cash injection for a sports complex or anything of that nature, all while insisting she intends to keep a vacation home she bought in the area.

‘We’re going to make it even more private than it is, and we’re still going to go enjoy it,’ she said. 

‘Those people aren’t running me out. They can posture themselves all they want, but I’m not going anywhere.’ 

In December, Cargill sparked fury among locals as a local reporter quoted her as saying: ‘The homes that we bought were pieces of crap. I couldn’t imagine living in any of them.’ 

Brooks Anderson, a 90-year-old retired minister, responded to the WSJ: ‘This is my piece of crap, and I love it.

‘I hope she regrets saying that.’

However, Cargill’s spat with the community comes as some question why there was any controversy in the first place, and her newfound prominence in the area was a good thing.

Dan O’Neill, 71, who sold his $500,000 home to Cargill for $825,000, said: ‘I think Kathy Cargill is a well-meaning lady. I have faith that they are going to do the right thing.’ 

2931 Lake Ave S, Duluth was purchased for $600K

2931 Lake Ave S, Duluth was purchased for $600K

Cargill reacted with fury after the mayor of the town of just 86,000 people demanded to know her intentions with the real estate purchases

Cargill reacted with fury after the mayor of the town of just 86,000 people demanded to know her intentions with the real estate purchases 

Cargill is known for her love of McLarens, which can drive at speeds over 200mph.

The Cargills are the fourth-richest family in the US, worth an estimated $47million. 

Their family now has 14 billionaires, more than any other family in the world.

Cargill was founded in 1865 by William Wallace Cargill. It is headquartered in Minnesota and the largest agricultural company in the world, producing and processing agricultural products but also offering a variety of financial services.

Most family members have extremely private lives and according to Forbes, many live on ranches and farms throughout Montana.

Very few pictures of the family exist in the public realm. Duncan MacMillan’s 1998 book, ‘The American Grain Family’, described the family as ‘most doggedly secretive’.

The company’s common equity has been owned by descendants of William Cargill and his son-in-law John MacMillan for over 140 years and six family members are on its 17-person board.

There are nearly 100 family members that together own around 90 percent of the company. The remaining ten percent is owned by employees through stock ownership plans and management-owned shares.

ᴀʀᴛɪᴄʟᴇ ꜱᴏᴜʀᴄᴇ

Leave a Comment