A Love Note to Leelanau

Dearest Leelanau County,

M-22 Highway Sign, Flickr Photo Credit - Kathleen McDonald

Taking the M-22 Drive

Since our first summer with you in 1980, we haven’t been able to get you off of our minds. We knew we loved you from the moment we drove up M-22 and saw your bright red cherries poking through trees in the orchards, as clear blue skies and cotton ball clouds danced above.

Not even distance has been able to keep us apart. Although we moved to Pennsylvania nearly 20 years ago, we defy conventional east coast summers spent “down the shore” and instead, head “up north” to see you, despite the blank stares we get when we talk about your cottages, Manitous, and Petoskey stones to those who do not understand what it means to love you.

4th of July Parade in Leland

4th of July Parade in Leland

That’s because to love you is to be a part of a secret- a secret held only by those of us who have been blessed to sneak away from it all and spend even just a week of our summers with you.

Your birch-lined beaches and potluck dinners on picnic tables captivate us. And days spent with you, bobbing through the brisk waters of Lake Michigan in giant, black inner-tubes keep us coming back for more.

Sunset over the Manitous

Fingers stained from your cherries and strawberries picked up at roadside stands leave a sweet reminder of you. And we cherish the treasures you leave for us in the form of rocks and “Leland Blue” on your shores.

Your sunsets bring us all together for a final evening show, as we sit recalling memories of years spent with you- 4th of July parades marched in, Pyramid Point trails hiked, white fish dinners grilled, Sunfish boat trips sailed, Blue Angels spotted.

Leelanau, thank you for being a part of our history, and for allowing us to be a little piece of yours.

Happy Fouth of July at Jolli Lodge on Lake Michigan

With Love,

The Taylor Family
Martha and Doug Taylor, Newtown,PA
Erin Taylor, Washington D.C.
Katheryn Taylor, Washington D.C.