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Orono is situated on the northern shores of Lake Minnetonka in Hennepin County, Minnesota. In 1858, when Minnesota became a state, what is now Orono was in Excelsior Township, but residents in the area later became Orono found it difficult to do business in Excelsior, given its location on the other side of the lake. In 1868, the townships were realigned so that everything north of the Narrows became part of Medina Township. Orono Township was created from the southern half of Medina Township in 1889, its name suggested by Major George Brackett, who had come from Orono, Maine. Orono Township once included portions of neighboring cities, including Minnetonka Beach, Long Lake, Wayzata, and Spring Park. When Orono Village was incorporated, it included all of the remaining portions of the township, including the settlements of Crystal Bay, Maple Plain, Medina, Navarre, Orono, and Bederwood, as well as Mahpiyata Island, Big Island and Deering Island. Surrounding communities include Medina, Long Lake, Wayzata, Deephaven, Greenwood, Tonka Bay, Spring Park, and Maple Plain. Minnetonka is just over ten miles to the southeast, and Plymouth is about seven miles north.



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