From Our Community: 29 Must-Do Activities in Pure Michigan

In honor of Leap Day (February 29th), we asked fans on our Facebook page what they would include on a list of 29 must-do activities in Michigan.

In no particular order, here are 29 of our favorite suggestions. Thanks to everyone who responded!

 

  1. “Go to Frankenmuth and visit Bronner’s, swim in Lake Michigan” – Robin Lynn Humble
  2. “Visit the Tulip Time Festival in Holland in May.” – Karen Zuverink Heyboer
  3. “Ride across Lake Michigan from Ludington to Wisconsin on the Badger!! Visit House of Flavors in Ludington!” – Becky Davis
  4. “Kayak across Lake Huron to Turnip Rock!!” – Autumn Richards
  5. Traverse City, the bay, the wineries, cherry festival. Stay at the Cherry Tree Inn.” – Thomas Batzmarowsky
  6. “Sunrise side of the state! Visit the harbors in Lexington and Port Sanilac!” – Marianne Kern
  7. “Watch a U of M vs. MSU game, eat at Zingerman’s, and fall asleep on the lawn in the Diag. You can’t do that anywhere else in the world!!” – Lisa Robinson
  8. “Definitely….Tunnel of Trees just north of Petoskey! :)” – Donna Ryan-Shyrock
  9. “Make your own snowshoes at Ludington State Park.” – Kristi Kiki Dunigan
  10. “Visit Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village. Visit any of our wonderful lighthouses. See Pictured Rocks and Tequamanon Falls. Visit Hartwick Pines.” – Ric Booth
  11. “Climb Sugarloaf Mountain near Marquette on a clear day, and take panoramic photos.” – Lisa Guenther
  12. “Definitely Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore!” – Ruth Snyder Wass
  13. “A short drive to Grosse Point Pier. Just beautiful on a sunny day!” – Brian Williams
  14. “Have a cinnamon roll at the Hilltop Restaurant in L’Anse! By the way, this “cinnamon roll” could feed a family of four…..hahaha” – Laurie Napp VanHorn
  15. “Driving on the M-22 Coast!” – Amy Kozlowski Murrin
  16. “Wade in every great lake. I have just one more to go! Lake Ontario!” – Amanda Marie Wilk Ames
  17. “4th of July fireworks show in Bay City. 50th anniversary this year…bigger and better show than ever before!” – Mike Metzler II ‎
  18. “Frankenmuth and of course attend a Wings game!” – Jill Stern
  19. Keweenaw Peninsula….breathe the cleanest, freshest air in Michigan.” – Christa Larson-Bazzi
  20. “Visit a Michigan winery — yum!” – Julie Dean Wingett
  21. “Go to the Ann Arbor Art Fair. A treat for all the senses.” – Felicity Gologram
  22. “Get your vote in at ArtPrize in Grand Rapids!” – Erin Barkel
  23. “Go to Charlevoix and listen to music in the park” – Noah Muszall
  24. “PLAY GOLF!!!!” – Jason Leonard
  25. “Attend the Woodward Dream Cruise.” – Nancy Perkins
  26. Tahquamenon Falls! Hike there, snow shoe, ski, snowmobile. Whatever your pleasure you can do it all here in Paradise Michigan!!!” – Laurie Winkler
  27. Bells Brewery in Kalamazoo!!” – Emily Ferenc Powell
  28. “Lake Michigan sunset.” – Tom Fischer
  29. “Go to Mackinac Island!!! My favorite place in the World!!!” – Susan Senn

A Marquette Ski Junkie in Pure Michigan

Aaron Peterson, a contributing photographer for Michigan Travel Ideas, is always up for a challenge, especially if it involves the outdoors and equipment. Aaron shares one of his favorite ski hang outs, Marquette Mountain.

One of the things I love about living near Marquette is immediate access to outdoor opportunities. Marquette Mountain ski area sits within city limits, less than 10 minutes from downtown shopping such as the Masonic Square Mall on Washington Street. In fact, you can see the white ribbons of runs from there!

Marquette Mountain is on one of a string of rugged hills rimming the city and leading north into the Huron Mountain range. Its location near the shore of Lake Superior, and 600 feet of vertical rise, means that dense clouds of lake-effect snow dump around 200 inches of white stuff annually. Yep, that means we average 130 days of skiing, from Thanksgiving through April!

You’ll need more than one day to tackle the mountain, which offers something for everyone, with 25 runs and three terrain parks. Marquette Mountain is home to some talented freestyle skiers and snowboarders who take full advantage of the parks. It’s always a thrill to check out the new tricks being thrown down on Contour’s jumps and rails. Looking for something more intense? Try Chute with 35-  to 50-foot decks. Ridge caters to beginners.

When the snow is especially good and I’m feeling brave, I head for the backcountry and ski Renegade and Weasels Gulch. At the end of those runs, you cross a bridge over the fast-moving Carp River to catch chair three to the top.

Hint: You’ll want to get to the hill early to get good parking near the chalet. The lot fills up quickly, and parking in the overflow area means having to cross highway M-553 with an armload of equipment. The chalet is fairly small, so I dress for the hill ahead of time to avoid the crowds inside.

Aaron Peterson is a travel photographer based near Lake Superior on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. His work has appeared in several publications, including Michigan Travel Ideas, Outside, National Geographic Adventure and Outdoor Life.

 

How did Michigan Cities Get Their Names? Part 5

We’re happy to share with you another post in our ongoing series of how cities in Michigan got their names. Here is the naming history of five more cities, including one city whose founders’ clever thinking was able to get their city named as county seat. In case you missed them, here are Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

Marquette is surrounded by its past but also by new shops displaying artwork, restaurants serving whitefish, symphonies playing in restored historic structures, and theaters highlighting local and national talent.

 

Marquette

The city of Marquette was founded with a different name. It was first called Worchester by a group of miners from a city by that name in Massachusetts. In 1850, the city was renamed to honor French Jesuit missionary Jaques Marquette, who famously explored the region.

Livonia

The area that is now Livonia was known for its rich soil and abundant harvests, attracting pioneers from New England. It’s believed they named the area after cities of similar names in New York state, Pennsylvania and, possibly, after a region near the Baltic sea comprising present day Estonia and Latvia.

Saginaw

The Sauk Indians originally lived in the Saginaw area before being driven out by the Ojibwe, or Chippewa Indians. The name, however, stuck. Saginaw is believed to mean “where the Sauk were.” The first permanent settlement by those other than the Native Americans began in 1815 on the banks of the Saginaw River.

Temperance

Originally named Bedford Center in 1859,  “Temperance” was suggested by one of the founding land father’s wives, who was a member of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union. A petition was sent around, and the name was changed to Temperance. As you might imagine, the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages was prohibited for some time.

Cadillac

The name Cadillac comes from Native American language as “Kautawabet” meaning “Broken Tooth,” after a Potawatamie chief who signed the Great Peace Treaty of 1825. The city was first organized in 1872 and called Clam Lake Village, but a dispute with the village of Sherman ensued over which city would hold the county seat. A group of politicians thought to change the name to Cadillac, after Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, an early Michigan explorer and founder of Detroit. Changing the name tricked the legislators, and Cadillac became the “new” county seat.