A Mid-Mitten Adventure in Midland

Lauren Dennis is a Michigan native who’s always up for an adventure. Today she tells us about a recent day trip she took with her mom and sister to Midland, Michigan.

Do you have a favorite day trip destination in Pure Michigan? Share with us in the comments section below or visit michigan.org for inspiration!

Michigan summers make me want to hit the road – just get in the car and go somewhere!  In the mood for a day trip recently, I chose Midland. Roughly two hours from Detroit, the city boasts numerous “must-see” places and is somewhere I haven’t been.  After recruiting my mom and sister as co-pilots, we fueled up on coffee and headed north with three items on our list: the Alden B. Dow Home and Studio, the Dow Gardens, and the Tridge. We were interested in seeing the Dow Home and Gardens, and frankly, just overly curious about this thing called the “Tridge.”

Our first stop was the Dow Home and Studio.  Tucked at the end of residential Post Street, the structure is approximately 20,000 square feet of amazing architecture.  Through a two-hour walking tour of the estate, we learned of Mr. Dow’s innate talent for design, his studies under Frank Lloyd Wright, and a good portion of the Dow family history and its contributions to the city of Midland.

After a brief misread of the map, we arrived at the Dow Gardens just in time to enjoy the grounds under the late afternoon sun. The three of us were greeted warmly by the staff, given a map, and strongly encouraged to enjoy our surroundings, which we did! The walking paths led us through beautifully tended flower gardens and along peaceful streams that offered ample time for reflection as well as numerous photo opportunities.  We all agreed we could spend hours there, but we had one more stop on the agenda!

Finally, we made our way to the downtown area for dinner and the most intriguing stop of the trip!  Downtown Midland offers a variety of restaurant options, and after some deliberation, we chose Pizza Sam’s on Main Street.  We were seated following a brief wait, ordered drinks, and then a pizza of our own design - choosing bacon, pineapple, and onions. It was delicious and reasonably priced! Plus, our server was very friendly and knowledgeable … and cute!

After dinner, we walked to the infamous Tridge! The three-way pedestrian bridge, according to the Midland Online website, was built in 1981 over the spot where the Tittabawassee and Chippewa Rivers meet. The structure itself is pretty amazing and offers beautiful views of both the waterways and downtown. We also got lucky and were able to enjoy a few minutes of the concert playing in the park before hitting the road for home.

Although we only scratched the surface of Midland on our visit, the beautiful scenery and the warm welcome we received were Pure Michigan.  Can’t wait to go back!

Lauren is a Michigan native who enjoys travel, yoga, good wine, and great adventures! If you're looking to plan a Pure Michigan adventure like Lauren's, visit michigan.org for ideas.