Ahhhhhh Summer in Michigan!

Cherries, parades, and air-dogs galore.  We left Hannah and John for a few days to take part in the Traverse City National Cherry Festival.

The Traverse City region is famous for its cherries
Lots and lots of cherries

We actually stayed in Empire, Michigan, and really enjoyed it all.

This was our first look at Lake Michigan from the village of Empire

First of all, our camping spot was at a resort!  It had a gated entrance with a remote control for us.  The pads were stamped concrete and included a table, fire pit and two chairs.  We even had a beautifully landscaped pond and small waterfall in our view.  Very comfortable and not what we are used to.

Our site at the Indigo Bluffs RV “Resort”
The is what an RV resort looks like!
The Boss

From our resort, we were a five mile drive to Empire which is on Lake Michigan. We traveled there after parking and enjoyed dinner at Joe’s Friendly Tavern.  It was a cool place and they even made their own root beer.  We did buy a 6 pack to enjoy later.  It is also the location of the famous Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lake Shore.  More on that later.

We spent the next day in Traverse City attending the Cherry Festival.  It is a pretty big town with a lot of restaurants and shops but it still has that small town feeling.  The first thing we found was the Ultimate Air-Dog competition.  We were captivated by how far these dogs would sail in the air after their toy.  Even more fun was watching them on the ramp because they were so excited.  We must have stayed there over two hours just watching them do their thing.

Ultimate Air Dogs were the funnest thing to watch at the Cherry Festival

We also watched the parade through town.  Again, it had such a small town feel, but there were over 100 entries.  Each elementary school in the community and neighboring communities had their own float.  There were high school bands and even an all steel drum band that was amazing.  We got quite a chuckle watching the women cloggers dance their way down main street.

This marching band was very good
The village of Elk Rapids float in the Cherry Festival Parade
Everybody has a float in the Cherry Festival Parade
The Petoskey Steel Drum Band. They sounded great.
Can’t have a midwest parade without Cloggers
The Coast Guard is a big part of the community in Traverse City

We ended this day with a walk along the lake and a drink while listening to a local band.  Dinner was at Mackinaw Brewery Company.

We watched this band while having a drink next the Lake Michigan

Our final day in this area was spent traveling the coast from Empire to Northport.  We spent quite a bit of time at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lake Shore.  We watched a lot a  people navigating up and down the dunes, it was unbelievable.  The sign at the top warned people to not go down because there would be charged if they needed to be saved and it could take up to two hours to climb back up.

The 450 foot climb from the top of the Sleeping Bear Sand Dunes to Lake Michigan. It can take some people 2 hours to climb back up.

We saw a Life Saving Station in Glen Arbor which was one of the first of its kind.  There are like fire stations that were used to save people whose ship or boat wrecked.  This life saving station was in service from 1901 until world war 2.

Sleeping Bear Point life saving station. They rescued sailors from wrecked ships along the coast

Later the whole life saving service was absorbed by the Coast Guard.  We also stopped at the Grand Traverse lighthouse and ended at the village of Northport.

The Grand Traverse Lighthouse

Another full day.


Add yours →

  1. Greg says you should have stopped to visit Hagerty insurance company!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. These are such great pics! That RV place looks like a great stop. I love the dog pics and th elementary school float is my favorite! Nice post! Safe travels 🙂


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