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Can anyone one here tell me about Northern Michigan, places to see, when to go, etc.

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arbusto_baboso Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 06:52 PM
Original message
Can anyone one here tell me about Northern Michigan, places to see, when to go, etc.
My very best friend moved from Southern California (where I am) to the Traverse City area at the beginning of April. She's already clamoring for me to come up for a visit.

What is the best time of year to go, and why? And what places must i see, and things should I do when I am there?
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notadmblnd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 07:01 PM
Response to Original message
1. Cherry Festival in may in Traverse city
Edited on Thu Apr-26-07 07:01 PM by notadmblnd
Lots of things to do in Michigan. Lake Michigan is right there. It's so big you'll think it's an ocean without the stinging salt water. Sleeping Bear Sand Dunes, a day trip to Mackinaw island and a ride on the hydro boats over. tons' of stuff to do in Michigan, just bring you're sunscreen and mosquito repellent.
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arbusto_baboso Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 07:03 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Cool. Thanks!
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OlderButWiser Donating Member (389 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-27-07 08:40 AM
Response to Reply #1
7. You'll see it if...
you go to Mackinaw Island but the Mackinac Bridge is a worth while sight to see. Especially on Labor Day when you can walk across it.
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CrazyOrangeCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 07:06 PM
Response to Original message
3. Au Sable River, in late spring.
Some of the bestest canoeing around.

Not crowded, and tons of wildlife.
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kanrok Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 07:08 PM
Response to Original message
4. You like golfing?
Plenty of world-class golf courses up in Traverse City. Torch Lake is about 45 minutes south of TC and is one of the clearest lakes in the world. Good food, good drink, wonderfully pleasant weather (in the summer) and nice people to boot. TC is a treasure.
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arbusto_baboso Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 07:09 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Still a neophyte at golf.
But what about decent brewpubs? Any recommendations?
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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-27-07 08:57 AM
Response to Reply #5
9. Some good brewpubs, you'll be happy to know!
Mackinaw Brew Pub and North Peak, both downtown on Front St. for starters.

Julie
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debannbull Donating Member (90 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-27-07 07:04 AM
Response to Original message
6. T.C.
Charming downtown. Two excellent brew pubs downtown. College
town, set on a gorgeous bay. Liberal city, conservative
county. All the amenities of a big city, very little hard
crime. Heard recently it came in second on the list of best
rated (retirement?) communities.  Interlochen Arts Academy
(www.interlochen.org) is a world class high school for
performing arts. Concerts all summer - this year everyone
excited about Dylan coming.  Friend's raves are genuine.
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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-27-07 08:55 AM
Response to Original message
8. Lots to do in Traverse!
I am fortunate enough to live here. My RL friend Deb (who lives in county next door and comes here often, Hi Deb! :hi: ) has already listed some of the great features of the area in post above mine. Lots of things to do listed in the local paper every week. Best time to come is of course the summer for a Californian. ;-) Though fall is breathtakingly beautiful. Wineries on two peninsulas, gorgeous views, delicious wine, you can't beat it. Cherry orchards in the spring, you should see it! There's a few spots on Old Mission Peninsula that are high up and a slight slope to either side. Down the slopes is a wall of cherry blossoms leading to the beautiful blue bay on either side. Go up to the Top of the Park in the downtown Park Place Hotel and take a look any time of the year. Surrounded by the very quaint and busy downtown with the bay as a backdrop and a lush green peninsula.

Good schools, low crime, lots of festivals and excuses to have fun....

If your friend is interested in getting involved in the local Dems BTW, let me know. ;-)

Cheers,
Julie
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LisaM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-27-07 05:27 PM
Response to Original message
10. Lighthouses, Mackinac Island, Grand Traverse Bay
And you can go up to the UP - very beautiful, but they also still have some of the old timey cheesy tourist stuff - little motel cabins shaped like teepees, etc. Stock up on dried cherries - they have the best prices I've ever seen for them, if you lke them.
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herbbrown Donating Member (318 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-01-07 09:40 AM
Response to Original message
11. Check out the Traverse City Film Festival
In the beginning of August, it's Michael Moore's film festival, and no it's not a left wing festival, it's much more than that. I've been going the last two years and it's the best new thing, it's the best thing in Traverse City. Just a wonderful event, with some wonderful entertainment and panels speaking.
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arbusto_baboso Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-26-07 03:38 PM
Response to Original message
12. Update on my trip: I'll bein TC from August 24 thru September 3.
Any new suggestions, people, now that I have a time frame?
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knitter4democracy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-27-07 08:01 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. Get some sour cherry balls.
They're the best candy. Oh, and a Cherry pit heating pad--they heat up in the microwave and are the best ones I've found yet.

There's an amazing little restaurant on the east end of main street called Patisserie Anis. Best food ever.

Oh, and the Traverse City Pie Company. Great chicken salad sandwich, and nothing beats the pie.

Hubby says to play the Bear at the Grand Traverse Resort and not even take a scorecard with you. :)
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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-12-07 11:38 AM
Response to Reply #12
17. Do a wine tour or two!
Leelanau and Old Mission Peninsula have some nice wineries. We do tend to have some really fabulous weather at that time so be sure to stop in somewhere along the bay for dinner or just cocktails on a deck. There are lots of places like that.

Julie
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arbusto_baboso Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-13-07 10:41 AM
Response to Reply #17
19. I'll also have 2 idle days in TC, so I can meet up with any DUer in the area who is so inclined.
Anyone who would like to meet this SoCal boy, just send me a message and we'll try to work something out.
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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 08:14 AM
Response to Reply #19
22. Sounds good!
Not sure what I'll have going on then but it is my hope that I'll be able to meet up with you, fellow DUer!

Cheers,
Julie--going through major life changes at the moment
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shaniqua6392 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-27-07 01:48 PM
Response to Original message
13. Here is the site that I use when looking for stuff to do.......
Edited on Wed Jun-27-07 01:50 PM by shaniqua6392
It is easy to navigate and you can put in the dates that you want, etc. Michigan is AWESOME!!!!

http://www.greatstufftodo.com /

on edit: Also try www.michigan.gov and click on travel and recreation!!!
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noonwitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-11-07 11:00 AM
Response to Original message
15. Traverse City is great
Edited on Wed Jul-11-07 11:40 AM by noonwitch
My grandparents live there, and I've been spending summer vacations there my entire life.

Things to do: beaches-there are plenty, some are free. I recommend the one in Old Mission-it's hard to find, but it's a good beach.

My grandpa lives on the Old Mission Penninsula. The lighthouse at the tip has a little nature area and a beach, although the water is too shallow for swimming there. The Old Mission is kind of cool if you are teaching kids about Michigan history.

There are two or three wineries on the penninsula. I prefer Chateau Chantal, which is on M-37 and sits atop a hill in which you have a great view of both bays. They have free wine tasting, and their wine is pretty good.

In town, there is the usual mall shopping, and the unique little downtown gift shops. Horizon Books is the local bookstore (there is a Borders by the mall), and they have a good selection of local books.

The Leelanau area (west of town) is very nice, too. Leland has a fishing village and little tourist-oriented stores. Same with Suttons Bay (which has a casino) and Northport.

If you like to buy stained glass things for your windows, The Stained Glass Factory is on M-72, just past US 131 in Acme. There is a casino out that way, too, if one is inclined to gamble.

You can rent jet skis at the Holiday Inn on the West Bay.

Interlochen Center for the Arts is worth a stop. It's southwest of Traverse City and in the summer, you can either pay for a concert or listen in on rehearsals for free. They also do plays and musicals. The kids are very talented. Josh Groban is one of their many famous graduates.

Restaurants: The Bower's Harbor Inn, on the OM Penninsula is probably the best place around. It is very expensive, and they have a less expensive backroom called The Bowery. The building is a famous haunted place-there is a ghost of the original owner's wife that can be seen in mirrors, and various strange things happen there often (allegedly). The Old Mission Tavern is also good, but more expensive than the name indicates. My grandpa always takes me to Mabel's, an excellent family restaurant located on Front Street/131, east of Garfield. Or he takes me to Sheldes, in front of Tom's Grocery on East 131.

Packing a picnic: Meijer is the local (and unionized) version of Walmart. They are on 131 south of town, on the way to the mall. Tom's and Glenn's are the local grocery chains, and are both decent stores. I think Glenn's is overpriced. The lighthouse park on the Old Mission Penninsula is a good place for a picnic, and there are other parks and such around the area.
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Dyedinthewoolliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-11-07 04:16 PM
Response to Original message
16. It's not in northern Michigan
but if you have a chance, got to Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village in Dearborn, near Detroit. It is worth it, trust me. If you are flying out of Detroit Metro, you can fit in a visit with a little planning...... :)It would be shame for you to not visit it if you are so close.
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noonwitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-13-07 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #16
18. Don't they have a rock star car exhibit going on right now?
they have Lennon's car and some others.

I love the Henry Ford museum-they have some great original neon signs, like an old Holiday Inn sign and an old McDonald's sign. They also have the Rosa Parks bus, which has been restored, and some presidential limos.
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Dyedinthewoolliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-13-07 05:35 PM
Response to Reply #18
20. Not sure what's happening now,
I live in Seattle but grew up in Detroit. :) However, it is a very cool museum and everyone should seee it if they can. :toast:
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hellbound-liberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 10:44 PM
Response to Original message
21. Just got back from St. Ignace in the U.P.
spent a week at a cabin on Lake Michigan. It was beautiful. We went to Mackinac Island, took a day trip to Sault Ste. Marie, visited the Ojibwe museum and then just relaxed the rest of the time. Mackinac Island is a must see and I also highly recommend a trip to Java Joe's in St. Ignace. He's a former county commissioner who runs a really nice little restaurant with lots of vegetarian options. He's also got a picture of Michael Moore on the wall from one of his recent trips. Unfortunately, we didn't make it to the Cherry Festival but it was still a great trip!
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