Eight Reasons to Keep Coming Back to Mackinac Island

Today, Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau shares eight reasons to keep coming back to Mackinac Island as told by their fans! 

Photo courtesy of Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau

Photo courtesy of Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau

Mackinac Island is known as a destination for reunions, a destination to return to year after year. From family vacation traditions to wedding and anniversary celebrations, or just a weekend getaway to have fun with friends and family, there are many reasons to keep coming back.

We recently asked some of our fans why they #MakeitMackinac every year. Here’s what they had to say…

Worked on the island during my summers in college to experience life outside of California. Now I go back every summer for a long weekend reunion with the amazing friends I made there. Can’t wait for my annual pilgrimage in just 6 more weeks… – DeeDee, Long Beach, CA

We spent our honeymoon on the island. It took us 10 years to get back, but we have been there every summer since. We renewed our wedding vows for our 20th anniversary a couple of years ago. We love this place so much, and our kids love it here as well! It’s always so sad when it comes time to leave the island. Maybe, someday, we won’t have to leave. – Tracy, Iowa City, IA

Photo courtesy of Mackinac Island Toursim Bureau

Photo courtesy of Mackinac Island Toursim Bureau

Grew up going to the island for a few days each summer. Went there for my honeymoon, and make it back every year. It’s my favorite place in the world to visit. – Allison

I visited the island a few times as a child, and loved it! Then my husband and I took our son when he was about 7 or 8. When we celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary we visited the island with family. On our 10th we stayed at the Main Street Inn for a week. For our 15th anniversary stayed two nights at Main Street Inn and brought our son so he could also experience the quiet of the island. We still visit at least once a year, and are planning to stay at Grand Hotel for our 20th anniversary in a just a few years. Never stayed there and have always wanted to. We must have properly spread our love for the island to our son because this summer he is working for Shepler’s Ferry and having a wonderful experience. Yes, even with all of the hard work, he loves it. The island is truly a magical and wonderful place, and I hope it keeps it tradition forever. – Denise, Dewitt, MI

My husband and I met while working on the summer at Grand Hotel! Mackinac will always be magic to us! – Lora, Tyler, TX

Photo courtesy of Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau

Photo courtesy of Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau

My parents honeymooned there in the 1940s and have made the trip every year since. Sometimes we came two and three times a year. Following the tradition, my daughter got married there in 2003. Keep the tradition alive, my 4 month old grandson just made his first visit. There is no other place like Mackinac. To me it’s a place I crave when I’m away from it. – Susan

We were married at the gazebo at Mission Point. We come back every year for our anniversary. – Beverly, Adrian, MI

I’ve been visiting since I was about 6, first time with my grandparents. We have ancestral roots to the Island and St. Ignace. We have brought our children and now our grandchild. We try to visit every summer. Cannot get enough of this beautiful Island. My favorite place to bring family. – Pam, Chesterton, IN

Why do you keep coming back to Mackinac? Share your reasons with us below!

Behind the Scenes of Marquette’s Craft Breweries

With breweries, microbreweries and brewpubs galore, craft beer is pouring in Pure Michigan! Today, featured blogger Jesse Land of Things to Do in the U.P. shares a behind the scenes look at the breweries of Marquette with the help of filmmaker Aaron Peterson. 

It’s no secret that Michigan’s craft beer scene is booming. And if you’ve read my Ultimate List of Upper Peninsula Breweries, you’ll remember that we have quite a few breweries in the U.P.!

But did you know that four of the U.P.’s most established breweries call Marquette County home? And that three of them are within walking distance of each other? For that and many other reasons, the Marquette area attracts craft beer lovers from all over. And to showcase the local craft beer scene, the good folks at Travel Marquette Michigan (with local filmmaker Aaron Peterson) produced a short video that goes behind the scenes of Marquette’s craft beer culture.

Enjoy!

Jesse-Land-headshot1Written by Jesse Land of Things to do in the U.P. on behalf of Travel Marquette Michigan.

Ten Ways to Take On the Outdoors in Frankenmuth

You may already know Frankenmuth for its Bavarian charm. However, you may not have known that Frankenmuth is also a prime destination for some outdoor summer activities. Today, guest blogger Christie Bierlein from Frankenmuth Convention and Visitors Buereau shares ten ways that you can take on the outdoors in Frankenmuth this season.

Photo courtesy of Thomas Warner at Bavarian Inn

Photo courtesy of Thomas Warner at Bavarian Inn

No doubt Frankenmuth is known for their beer, chicken and having the largest Christmas store in the world, but most visitors don’t know all of the scenic outdoor adventure it has to offer. Below are ten hidden gems off the beaten path from the regular bustle of Frankenmuth. Sure to provide days of fun and entertainment for the whole family. That is the magic of Frankenmuth.

Great Views

Fun Ships is a business that thrives on creating unique experiences along the beautiful Cass River for thousands of guests per year. They are a recipient of a “Keep Michigan Beautiful” award for their stunning patio views that are built right into the hill and wind all the way down to their docks along the shore. Fun Ships offers quaint, historical boat rides on an intimate 12 person electric Duffy boat; you can even experience a wine and chocolate pairing while you take in the scenery of the Frankenmuth countryside.

Paddleboard and Kayak

One thing you might notice as you cruise down the river is Frankenmuth Outfitters, a trendy new company to Frankenmuth offering kayak and paddleboard rentals. They also have bike trail maps available if staying on land is more your thing.

Cast a Line

Michigan is obviously a great place to fish with all of the Great Lakes but Frankenmuth is quickly becoming a popular place to drop a line. This fall, construction will begin on the fish passage project at the Cass River Dam in the heart of downtown. The fish passage project is a constructed rapids or rock ramp that will allow sport fish to pass over the dam, returning to spawning area further upstream. The project will benefit the Cass River through the increase in fish populations, with regional benefit to the award winning fishery in the Saginaw Bay.

Fly through the Trees

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Photo courtesy of Frankenmuth Convention and Visitors Bureau at Frankenmuth Adventure Park

If you’re looking for even more adventure, make sure to stop at the Adventure Park. This aerial forest adventure course is a fun family outing. They offer five different levels of climbing and zip lining so there’s no need for excuses to try it!

Hike through the Hills

Frankenmuth has many parks but their two most popular are Heritage and Memorial Parks. Memorial Park is surrounded by hills which make for great family fun. Look for toads in the creek or walk along one of the trails in the woods. Heritage Park is located on the Cass River and is home to the Frankenmuth Outfitters and the canoe launch. There is a one mile paved walking/running path around the park which makes is perfect for the active traveler.

Take a Riverboat Ride

The Bavarian Belle Riverboat is another great way to experience Frankenmuth by water. Feed the ducks and watch the Frankenmuth countryside float by as you get a historical narrated tour on how Frankenmuth came to be on this authentic Stern Driven Paddlewheel boat.

Get your Fitness on!

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Photo courtesy of Frankenmuth Convention and Visitors Bureau

Quickly becoming known as a “race town” Frankenmuth offers many different sporting activities throughout the year. Kicking off August is the Bavarian Inn Experience Triathlon continuing to the Bruckläufe (Bridge race) half marathon in October. Other races and events throughout the year include the 8K Winterläufe in February, the Zehnder’s Tour de Frankenmuth bike race in May, the Volkslaüfe 5K, 10K, 20K (on the fourth of July) and the newest event, the Frankenmüdder (an obstacle style 5K) which debuted July 19th 2014.

Have a Beverage… Outside!

Frankenmuth offers a variety of beautiful outdoor beer gardens. Try out the Fischer Platz under the “glockenspiel” at the Bavarian Inn Restaurant, offering German music and entertainment daily. The Frankenmuth Brewery is another do not miss in terms of outdoor dining and drinking, their patio overlooks the Cass and Heritage Park. Tiffany’s is a local favorite in Frankenmuth, especially known for their pizza and laid back style night life; their outdoor patio has a great view of the downtown area. Prost is the newest addition to Frankenmuth, opening in August they boast a rustic chic atmosphere both inside and their outdoor beer garden. What sets Prost’s patio apart is its gazebo (equipped with a chandelier), fire bar all the wine, craft beer and unique cocktails you want with charming downtown views.

Photo courtesy of Frankenmuth Convention and Visitors Bureau

Photo courtesy of Frankenmuth Convention and Visitors Bureau

Smell the Flowers

Boasting over 380 hanging flower baskets, 40 annuals and 50 perennials Frankenmuth is a plant lover’s dream. Along with the 90 plants and flowers planted each year they plant 15 varieties of tropical plants, one of which is a prized “Bird of Paradise.” July and August are great months for a walk downtown to enjoy the color, perhaps even while you enjoy a beer at one of our beer gardens.

Give Disc Golf a Whirl

Rounding out our top ten is another Frankenmuth local favorite; disc golf! Played in Memorial Park and rated as one of the top 20 disc golf courses in Michigan, the course offers 18 holes of hilly and wooded fun that will challenge beginners to the most advanced players.

Planning on visiting Frankenmuth this summer? Join the conversation and share your photos using #muthfun on Twitter and Instagram or share your photos on Facebook.