/Tag: events

Left Foot Charley Hosts Riesling March Madness

Battle of the Rieslings

Who needs basketball match-ups when you can battle it out to see which Riesling reigns supreme! Left Foot Charley is getting in on the March Madness with a Riesling wine contest.

Beginning Thursday March 15 and running for four weeks they will match up current and previous vintages of Left Foot Charley Riesling in a bracket-style tournament. Stop by their winery located at The Village at Grand Traverse Commons to taste, compare and vote for the winners on Thursday and Friday of each week.

Left Foot Charley has chosen 8 wines for the field that range from dry to sweet, pulling from vintages as far back as 2008, including a rare Riesling collaboration never previously offered for tasting or for sale.

The cost is $5 for the samples and the opportunity to vote. Guests who participate each week will be entered to win a $25 Left Foot Charley gift certificate.

We can’t resist a good Riesling, and Left Foot Charley has been producing them for years. Get in on the March fun and join the Riesling Madness. Specialty food pairings from Trattoria Stella as well as cheese and accoutrements will also be available for purchase. Glass pours and bottle sales are a way to extend the enjoyment – and perhaps pick up something unexpected.

Cheers!

By |2018-12-12T09:18:08+00:00March 15th, 2018|Events, Wineries|2 Comments

Ring in the New Year in Traverse City

New Years Eve Traverse City photo

What will you do on New Year’s Eve?

If you’re like me New Year’s Eve sneaks up on you after a long holiday of feasts, friends and family. Sometimes we have a plan, and sometimes we’re making it up as we go along. So for all you last minute planners out there here are a few ways to enjoy New Year’s Eve up north.

The CherryT Ball Drop

If you’ve ever dreamed of making it to Times Square on New Year’s Eve to be a part of huge crowds chanting a countdown to ring in the new year, then this option is for you (in a much smaller scale of course). Downtown Traverse City is bustling on New Year’s Eve during the CherryT Ball Drop. No that’s not a spelling error. The CherryT stands for Chartity ball, as the event is a fundraiser by design. The entrance fee is a $3 cash donation or 3 canned goods, with proceeds benefiting the Goodwill Food Pantry.

For all the details about this year’s CherryT Ball Drop visit their website.

Family Fun

Looking for a family-friendly way to count down to 2014? How about glow bowling, music, pizza and enough arcade games to keep the kids busy for hours. You’ll find it all at Lucky Jacks from 5:30pm – 8:30pm on New Year’s Eve. If whipping your friends at laser tag or on the pool table sounds better than freezing outside, why let the kids have all the fun? Show up later for the adult party. It lasts from 9pm – 1am.

Hoping to celebrate outdoors, but not interested in the big ball drop crowds? How about donning your skis for a torchlit parade followed by fireworks? That’s what’s in store at Crystal Mountain Resort this year. There’s an ultimate family pirate party the kids will enjoy, or join the Slopeside party for dinner and dancing along with a champagne toast. Party cover varies. Lift ticket or season pass required to participate in the torchlit parade.

Nightclubs

Shimmers on the Bay inside the West Bay Beach Holiday Inn Resort has two times the fun this year. They’ve got two bands: Soul Celebration & Twice Shy, along with DJ Shawny D as the host. Rock in the New Year with party favors, an old-fashioned balloon drop, champagne toast and lots of dancing fun. $15 cover

If you’re a fan of Billy Strings & Don Julin you’ll want to be at InsideOut Gallery for the Swingin’ Stringin’ New Year’s Eve. For a $10 admission you can enjoy the sounds of the True Falsettos and legendary aforementioned duo who will take you clappin’ and toe tappin’ into 2014. There’s a full bar available at the Outre Lounge, or step out for a craft beer and a bite next door at the Workshop Brewing Company.

Michigan Sparking Wine photo

Have a bubbly New Year!

Bring on the Bubbly

It wouldn’t be New Year’s Eve if there weren’t some corks a poppin’. As always our glasses will be be full of Michigan selections. So we thought we’d share a few local recommendations.

You can’t go wrong with L. Mawby this time of year. They specialize in sparkling wines from dry to sweet. My picks shy away from brut, which is why I opt for Detroit or Wet.

One of my personal favorites is only available seasonally from Black Star Farms. The Bubbly Nouveau tends toward the sweet and pink, which makes it a great choice when going to a party. If you’re lucky to find any left on the shelves by New Year’s Eve pick up a bottle or two. Otherwise log that idea away for next year.

Left Foot Charley is bringing out something special for the holiday. Stop by on New Year’s Eve for a glass of their 2010 Gitali, a brut bubbly. Available by the glass (for a limited time) or by the bottle.

Celebrate by Chateau Chantal is another great sparkling wine option from the Old Mission peninsula. It also makes a nice hostess gift if you’re attending a New Year’s party with friends.

 

New Years appetizer photoTasty Treats

My favorite way to spend New Year’s Eve is at a house party with friends. But you can’t show up empty handed. So I’m going to share a handy holiday recipe that’s sure to please.

Cranberry Brie Bites

You’ll need:

Washed whole fresh cranberries
maple syrup
granulated sugar
cherry preserves (I like Old Mission Traders or Benjamin Twiggs)
brie, rind removed and sliced in 1/4″ thick slices
water table crackers
fresh mint leaves (optional)

Directions: Soak the cranberries in maple syrup overnight. Drain and roll cranberries in granulated sugar. Assemble the crackers with a slice of brie, top with small amount of cherry preserves and 2 or 3 sugared cranberries. Add a mint leaf as an edible garnish.

They’re beautiful, and they taste great!

You’ve got your bubbly, a great appetizer, and lots of options for how to spend your New Year’s Eve. So get out there and party like it’s 1999. It may not the be the turn of the century, but I’m looking forward to the turn of the calendar page just the same.

Happy New Year everyone!

By |2018-09-12T13:20:14+00:00December 31st, 2013|Events, Family Fun|0 Comments

Wellington Inn at Christmastime

Antiquities Wellington Inn

Discover the beauty of the Wellington Inn at Christmastime

If you’ve ever wandered down historic 6th Street and Washington in Traverse City and wondered what it would be like to live in those huge Victorian homes then this is for you. The Wellington Inn is opening their doors to the community for the 11th season in a celebration of old fashioned Christmas spirit. I stopped by the Inn this week for a behind-the-scenes peek at what’s to come this weekend and next during their annual Inn at Christmastime extravaganza.

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By |2018-09-12T13:20:14+00:00December 4th, 2013|Events|0 Comments

Star Parties Begin May 11 at Sleeping Bear Dunes

Sleeping Bear Dunes Star Parties

Explore the Night Sky at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore will be offering a series of monthly astronomy programs this year.  Join Park Rangers and the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society for a guided exploration of our night sky and one daytime event.  The next Star Party is May 11 with a viewing of the closest star — the sun.  Each special event takes place at a different location throughout the National Lakeshore to take advantage of strategic viewing opportunities.  Come for star gazing, meteor showers, sun viewing, and storytelling.  Kids of all ages can participate in the Night Sky Junior Ranger program.

Starry night skies and natural darkness are important components of the special places the National Park Service protects.  National parks hold some of the last remaining harbors of darkness and provide an excellent opportunity to experience this endangered resource.  So visit the National Lakeshore and enjoy park skies by attending the following Star Parties:

May 11 (12:00-2:00 p.m.), Visitor Center Parking Lot in Empire
This is a daytime Star Party to view our closest star – the sun.  View the sun using a solar telescope and solar shades.  See solar activity, including flares and prominences.


 

June 8 (9:00-11:00 p.m.), Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive #3 Overlook
View Saturn, the Milky Way, and various constellations.  Meet at the Dune Overlook #3, Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive.  Please park at Picnic Mountain; the next right after the #2 stop.

 

July 13 (9:00-11:00 p.m.), Platte River Point
View the moon, Saturn, and various constellations.

 

August 10 (9:00-11:00 p.m.), Thoreson Farm in Port Oneida
The Port Oneida Fair celebration continues into the night.  View Saturn and the Perseid meteors.

 

September 7 (9:00-11:00 p.m.), Dune Climb Parking Lot
View the summer Milky Way and many Deep Sky Objects.

 

October 21 (8:00-10:00 p.m.), Dune Climb Parking Lot
Celebrate the 43rd anniversary of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore with a starry event.

For all astronomy events, bring a flashlight for the walk back to your car and bug spray, if needed.  Park Rangers and GTAS staff will be wearing red glow bracelets at the events. 

The monthly Star Parties will be cancelled during inclement weather.  The decision is usually made three hours in advance.  Please call Park Rangers at 231-326-5135, ext. 331, for a voicemail message with the decision.

All programs are free.  Participants need only purchase the Park Entrance Pass or have an Annual Pass displayed in their vehicle to join in the fun.

 

By |2013-05-03T11:21:29+00:00May 3rd, 2013|Events, Leelanau|0 Comments

Traverse City Restaurant Week 2/26 – 3/3

Second Annual Restaurant Week Highlights Traverse City Dining
 
The Downtown Traverse City Association will host the second Traverse City Restaurant Week in response to the many accolades regarding great restaurants and food offerings in the Grand Traverse Region. TCRW promises to be the most delicious week of the winter where patrons may perfect the art of wining and dining by discovering the talents of local chefs, with many offerings focused on the farm to table movement and local agriculture.
 
Restaurant Weeks are quickly popping up in communities all over the country and have proved to be a success. The Traverse City region is a natural fit for our finest restaurants to offer multi-course meals that have been especially prepared for this gourmet event. Traverse City’s finest restaurants will offer multi-course meals that have been especially prepared for this gourmet event with three courses for $25 per person.
 

“Traverse City Restaurant Week offers seven days of dining in one of Michigan’s great food regions. Exploring news eateries and dining at your favorite are truly the highlights of this culinary event,” says Colleen Paveglio, DDA/DTCA Marketing Director.

 

Enter to Win!

During Traverse City Restaurant Week, diners may enter to win a prize package that includes $50 gift cards to each participating restaurant.
Visit the downtowntc.com website for further information on participating restaurants and menus.  

Reservations are recommended as this event proved quite popular last year. Check out the Events category on our smartphone app, Traverse Traveler,  where we’ve listed each restaurant along with a phone number for one-touch dialing. Following is a peek at who will be participating:

Traverse Traveler app events7 Monks Taproom

Amical

Apache Trout Grill

The Bay Leaf

Blue Tractor Cook Shop

The Boathouse

Chez Peres/Patisserie Amie

CW’s Blue Water Bistro: Holiday Inn West Bay

Firefly Café & Lounge

Hanna Bistro

Harrington’s By the Bay

Mackinaw Brewing Co.

Minervas: Park Place Hotel

Modes Bum Steer

North Peak Brewing Co.

Phil’s on Front

Poppycocks

Red Ginger

Relfect: Cambria Suites

The Soul Hole

Trattoria Stella

Travino, Traverse Wine & Grille

Union Cantina

 

Traverse City Restaurant Week is hosted by the over 200 merchants, restaurants and businesses who are members of the Downtown Traverse City Association.  For more information or to volunteer, call the DTCA office at (231) 922-2050 or email colleen@downtowntc.com  

By |2012-02-03T14:30:48+00:00February 3rd, 2012|Events, Traverse City|0 Comments

Traverse City Film Festival July 26-31

Traverse City Film Festival poster imageTraverse City welcomes visitors to 7th annual Film Festival

 

Whether you’re a film fanatic, or just looking for a fun activity while visiting Traverse City, the Traverse City Film Festival is a event for the whole family. This year’s fesitival is packed with movies from near and far, including a community-wide Lip Dub that premiere’s on opening night.

 

The festival features:

  • Indie Films, Foreign Films, Documentaries and Shorts in 7 different venues
  • Free movie screens at the Open Space each night
  • Kids Fest with $1 daily films
  • Panel discussions & Film School at NMC

 

Free Open Space begin at dusk:

July 26 – Star Wars V: Empire Strikes Back and the premiere of the Traverse City Lip Dub

July 27 – Mr. Deeds Goes to Town

July 28 – Mrs. Doubtfire

July 29 – People’s Choice: Batman, the Dark Knight

July 30 – Tangled

 

An event this popular often sells out, so if you haven’t purchased tickets yet what are you waiting for? Visit their website: www.traversecityfilmfest.org.

 

 

By |2011-07-25T11:14:49+00:00July 25th, 2011|Events, Traverse City|0 Comments

NPS Rangers Host Star-Gazing on June 18th

Sleeping Bear Dunes Star-GazingStar Party at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

 

Visit Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore on Saturday, June 18 at 9:00 p.m. for an evening with the stars. Join a Park Ranger and the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society at the mouth of the Platte River on Lake Michigan Drive in Benzie County to learn about and celebrate the night sky.  Watch the sun set into Lake Michigan, view the starry constellations, and spot the rings of Saturn through huge telescopes.  If you are lucky, you may even get to see the elusive green flash as the sun sinks below the horizon!

 

The Grand Traverse Astronomical Society is partnering with the National Lakeshore for this event.  The Society has been in existence for 29 years and its members regularly share their knowledge and enthusiasm with the public at the Northwestern Michigan College’s Rogers Observatory in Traverse City.  More recently, the Society has branched out to locations from street corners to national parks, sharing the wonders of the universe with the public.  Our first joint star party was this past October on the 40th anniversary of the National Lakeshore. Four more evenings are scheduled through October 2011. (Photo from October 2010)

 

The dark skies of the National Lakeshore were recently hailed as one of the ten best in the entire National Park System. “Just as the parks are dedicated to preserving landscapes, cultural sites, and habitat for wildlife, so are they concerned about overhead resources – particularly the kind of dark skies that reveal the beauty of the nighttime firmament,” declares National Geographic’s newly released Ten Best of Everything National Parks.

 

Superintendent Dusty Shultz noted, “Many of our visitors come from cities where they rarely, if ever, get to see the Milky Way. Looking out over Lake Michigan, they are awestruck by the density of the constellations in view.” Shultz added, “We are pleased and honored to be working with the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society on this series of star
parties and know the public will marvel at what they can see through the lenses of those fabulous telescopes.”

 

The public is invited to join us on this fun and educational night. Meet the Park Ranger at the end of Lake Michigan Road at the mouth of the Platte River on Saturday, June 18. The event, which begins at 9:00 p.m., will be offered just in time to also watch the sunset. Society members will have their telescopes out until 10:30 p.m. Dress for the weather and bring a flashlight for the walk back to your car. 

 

All Park Ranger-led programs are free. Participants need only purchase the park entrance pass or have an annual pass displayed on their vehicle to join in the fun.  Please call 231-326-5134, ext. 328, for details or log onto www.nps.gov/slbe. Also, check out our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/sbdnl.

 

By |2011-06-15T13:36:45+00:00June 15th, 2011|Benzie, Events|0 Comments

Traverse City Restaurant Week 2/27 – 3/5

First Annual Restaurant Week Highlights Traverse City Dining
 
The Downtown Traverse City Association will host the first Traverse City Restaurant Week in response to the many accolades regarding great restaurants and food offerings in the Grand Traverse Region. February 27 through March 5, 2011 promises to be the most delicious week of the winter where diners may perfect the art of dining by discovering new restaurants or enjoying their favorite at an affordable price.
 
Restaurant Weeks are quickly popping up in communities all over the country and have proved to be a success. The Traverse City region is a natural fit for our finest restaurants to offer multi-course meals that have been especially prepared for this gourmet event. Fifteen of Traverse City’s most reputable restaurants will offer special dinner menu choices of three courses for $25 per person.
 
“We are excited see Traverse City Restaurant Week grow and become not only a community favorite, but also a tourist attraction in an otherwise slow time of year.  This is a great way to go that restaurant that you have been dying to try or go to your favorite,” says Colleen Paveglio, DDA/DTCA Marketing Director.
 

Enter to Win!

During Traverse City Restaurant Week, diners may enter to win a prize package that includes $50 gift cards to each participating restaurant.
Visit the downtowntc.com website for further information on participating restaurants and menus.  Following is a peek at who will be participating:
 

  • Amical
  • Blue Tractor Cook Shop
  • The Boathouse
  • The Cook’s House
  • Hanna Bistro
  • Jolly Pumpkin
  • Lil Bo Pub & Grille
  • Minervas
  • Mission Table (Friday & Saturday Only)
  • Modes Bum Steer
  • North Peak Brewing Co.
  • Patisserie Amie/Chez Peres
  • Phil’s on Front
  • Red Ginger
  • Trattoria Stella 

 
 
The First Annual Traverse City Restaurant Week is hosted by the over 200 merchants, restaurants and businesses who are members of the Downtown Traverse City Association.  For more information or to volunteer, call the DTCA office at (231) 922-2050 or email colleen@downtowntc.com   

By |2011-01-31T18:51:28+00:00January 31st, 2011|Events, Traverse City|0 Comments

Chili Cook-Off Downtown Traverse City, Saturday 1-29

Restaurants compete for top chili awards

Warm up your taste buds this winter at the 17th Annual Downtown Chili Cook-Off presented by Pepsi Cola, C.H. Robinson Worldwide Inc, ABC 29&8 and WTCM on January 29th in Downtown Traverse City. Participants can sample the mild to the wild as the area’s top restaurants vie for awards in various categories. 

Northern Michigan’s ultimate chili challenge takes place from 11:00 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Park Place Dome in Downtown Traverse City. Additional seating will be provided in the lower of the Park Place Hotel and feature a cash bar. 

The Chili Cook-off attracted approximately 1,700 participants in 2010, who sampled the many chilies and voted for their favorites. Area restaurants will be cooking up their special recipes as they compete in eight different categories – 1, 2 and 3-alarm, white, vegetarian, no bean, seafood and ethnic as well as the coveted “people’s choice” award. The event will be featuring three organic chilies this year!

Chili lovers can choose a sampler of eight chilies for $8 or single bowls of their favorites for $4.  Pepsi products will also be available.  All proceeds from the event help support such Downtown community activities as Friday Night Live, Celebration for Young Children, the Downtown Art Walk, holiday activities and many other free downtown events throughout the year.  “The Downtown Chili Cook-Off continues to be a community favorite. What a great way to spend a cold snowy Saturday sampling chili by local chefs,” says Marketing Director, Colleen Paveglio. Following is a peek at who will be competing:

  • Cherry Republic
  • The Dish Café
  • Hanna Bistro
  • Lil Bo Pub & Grille
  • Minervas
  • Mt. Holiday
  • Omelette Shoppe
  • Oryana Lake Street Café
  • Prime Time Pub
  • Scalawags Whitefish & Chips
  • The Soul Hole
  • Union Cantina 

Morsels Bite Sized Bakery & Gourmet Coffee will be serving cornbread morsels to compliment the competing chilies.
 

The Annual Chili Cook-off is hosted by the over 200 merchants, restaurants and businesses who are members of the Downtown Traverse City Association. For more information or to volunteer, call the DTCA office at (231) 922-2050 or email colleen@downtowntc.com  

By |2011-01-27T09:18:01+00:00January 27th, 2011|Events, Traverse City|0 Comments

Race to Nowhere Film

Race to Nowhere film imageRace To Nowhere: The Dark Side of America’s Achievement Culture

On December 15th at 4:45PM & 7:15PM The State Theatre in downtown Traverse City will feature a special showing of the film Race to Nowhere.

A concerned mother turned filmmaker aims her camera at the high-stakes, high-pressure culture that has invaded our schools and our children’s lives. Race to Nowhere points to the silent epidemic in our schools: cheating has become commonplace; students are disengaged; stress-related illness and depression are rampant; and many young people arrive at college and the workplace unprepared and uninspired.

Race to Nowhere is a call to action for families, educators, and policy makers to challenge current assumptions on how to best prepare the youth of America to become healthy, bright, contributing and leading citizens.
Tickets: $10 in advance or $15 at the door.  Proceeds benefit Learn and Serve projects throughout the TBAISD.

For each General Admission ticket purchased, you will receive one complimentary student ticket.

Visit www.tcaps.net/racetonowhere for more tickets and details

Director Q&A to follow both screenings

"Another inconvenient truth" -George Lucas Educational Foundation
"Must-see documentary" -Patrick Bassett, President, National Association of Independent Schools

For information about the film visit www.RaceToNowhere.com

By |2010-12-03T15:12:12+00:00December 3rd, 2010|Check This Out, Events, Traverse City|0 Comments

Interlochen Performing Arts Series Begins 9/30

Interlochen Center for the Arts card imageThe fall-winter season at Interlochen is just warming up

Interlochen Center for the Arts has a fabulous line-up of performances, concerts and entertainment by International artists and Interlochen students. If the summer slipped past without a trip to Interlochen, don’t let this next season disappear without attending a performance or two. Grab your planner and make a date with Interlochen.

 

 

Here’s what’s in store:

 

2010-11 Performing Arts Series
  • Sept 30:     Jason Mraz
  • Oct 7-8:     "Interlochen Arts Academy "Collage"
  • Oct 21:     Project Trio
  • Nov 4:     Benny Green, solo piano
  • Nov 8:     Ballet Hispanico
  • Nov 19-20, Dec 3-5:     "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels: The Musical"
    Arts Academy Musical Theatre Co.
  • Dec 10-12:     "Sleeping Beauty"
    Interlochen Dance Company and Orchestra
  • Jan 15:     Jaleel Shaw, saxophone
    with Arts Academy Jazz Ensemble
  • Jan 22:     Joshua Roman, cello
    with Arts Academy Orchestra
  • Feb 17:     Popovich Comedy Pet Theater
  • Feb 20:     Ladysmith Black Mambazo
  • Apr 8:     In the Mood
  • May 13-14:     Disney’s "Beauty and the Beast"
    Arts Academy Musical Theatre Co.

Schedule subject to change.

Interlochen Website: tickets.interlochen.org

Phone: 800.681.5920

By |2010-09-20T12:36:26+00:00September 20th, 2010|Art Scene, Attractions, Traverse City|0 Comments

50 Ways to Love Your Summer

Mealtickets hometown highlights graphic

Don’t waste a moment of your Up North summer

 

The 97 days between Memorial Day and Labor Day will fly by before we know it. So I decided to start early and make a list. A list of 50 ways to love my summer. These are some of my favorite ways to enjoy Traverse City and the surrounding area at it’s peak season.

 

 

1.  Get a barrel of popcorn drizzled in real butter, stretch out on a lawn chair and watch a drive-in movie at the Cherry Bowl in Honor.

 

2.  Enjoy a heaping scoop ice cream at Moomers, while watching the cows graze at sunset. Preferably Chocolate Cookie Monster in a chocolate dipped waffle cone to be exact. But Cherries Moobilee is good too.

 

3.  Attend a student performance at Interlochen Center for the Arts. Collage is a great way to see it all, but I love the high school musicals.

 

4.  Watch the marine traffic come and go while you sip a cocktail on the deck at Scott’s Harbor Grill. Cloaked in a cool breeze at sunset, or enjoying the sun on your shoulders at lunchtime, Scott’s deck is my favorite.

 

5.  Savor a simple homebaked snack. Pick-up a loaf of Pleasanton Bakery‘s parmesan olive bread and savor it in bite-sized pieces torn from the warm loaf. It’s great plain, but I like mine dipped in Fustini’s olive oils and balsamic vinegars.

 

6.  Wrap up the week with an evening at Friday Night Live in downtown Traverse City. Buy a balloon, enjoy live music, have your face painted. A perfect place to be a kid again…or bring one.

 

7.  Discover amazing artists as you tour a local art fair. I never miss the Frankfort art fair in August, but not just for the art. I’m in love with the chicken dinners they cook in the park. Best Chicken EVER!

 

8.  Visit a vineyard and sip the fruits of Old Mission or Leelanau peninsula on a wine tour. On Old Mission I like to start at 2 Lads Winery and work my way back. On Leelanau you better make two trips!

 

9.  Fill a basket with fresh picked fruit straight from the orchard. Stop at a U-Pick farm for a hands-on experience or pull up to a roadside stand and select from nature’s best.

 

10. Cast a line on the Boardman River for trout or reel in a Lake Michigan salmon on a charter fishing trip. Try Hammerhead in Frankfort or Outta Line in Traverse City.

 

11.  Walk the shores of Lake Michigan and search for petoskey stones and Leland blue stone.

 

12.  Hop on a boat or a jet ski and ride out to where the deep water lives, clear and blue green as far as the eyes can see…and dive in!

 

13. Eat your fill of fresh sweet corn. Nobody beats Hall’s farm on North Long Lake Road in Traverse City.

 

14. Ride the train at the old Clinch Park zoo. Let the whistle fill your ears as you absorb the smiles of young and old around you.

 

15. Visit a lighthouse for an historic trip back in time. Point Betsie near Frankfort is the most photographed, but I’m looking forward to a trip back to South Manitou Island. That is, if I can brave the spiral stairs again.

 

16.  Love fudge–watch it made, cooked in copper and turned on a cold marble slab, at Murdick’s Fudge Shoppe. Peanut butter, you’re calling my name.

 

17.  Take a behind-the-scenes tour. Whether you’re a foodie, a vodka lover or wine geek there’s a tour to be had if you ask. Learn Great Foods will organize one or stop in Grand Traverse Distillery or Bel Lago Winery and they’ll show you the sites.

 

18.  Spend a day at the beach wireless and free, with a book and your favorite beverage.

 

19.  Eat cherries everyday! OK, maybe not everyday, but come on this is cherry country people. Check out The Cherry Stop for dozens of ways to quench your cherry cravings.

 

20.  Make a day trip drive along M-22 from Elberta to Northport and back to Traverse City. Stop to eat, shop and take photos along the way.

 

21.  Grab an early bird dinner at The Manitou Restaurant. No skimping. Start with the skinny dippers and finish with blueberry raspberry pie.

 

22.  Watch the sunset sink below the horizon from a beach towel on the sand.

 

23.  Park and walk a mile to the beach for spectacular Fourth of July fireworks. Come early to dig a pit in the sand for reclined viewing, or bring a cozy chair.

 

24.  Spend a day at the festival. Which one? Readers choice. There’s Cherry Festival, Film Festival, Jazz Festival and a Microbrew and Music Festival, you can’t go wrong.

 

25.  Climb the Sleeping Bear Dunes and run down as fast as your feet can carry you. If you’re not scraping sand from your scalp before bed then you didn’t have enough fun.

 

26.  Dine al fresco on a downtown street and people watch. Umbrella tables at Hanna are popular. If you prefer a water view check out Apache Trout Grill or Knot Just a Bar.

 

27.  Dance in the rain like nobody’s watching – preferably with a child. They’ll wonder what’s got into you.

 

28.  Photograph the everyday special places, people and things in your life. It’s not the parties and holidays that spark nostalgia but the details of summer memories past.

 

29.  Build a bonfire on the beach and make s’mores. Eat until your fingers are sticky, the chocolate is gone and only broken graham crackers remain.

 

30.  Play a sport on the lawn. Badmitten, croquet, bocce or new favorites like ring toss and bean bag games make fun family competitions a must-do for summer.

 

31.  Thump your paddle like Hiawatha on the floor of a Riverside canoe as you navigate the Platte River. When you make it to the mouth spend an hour playing in the current.

 

32.  Make par on a golf course. Mine will have to be mini golf at Pirates Cove, but if you’re up to the challenge of the real deal try Mistwood in Lake Ann. Or help celebrate 25 years at The Bear at the Grand Traverse Resort.

 

33. Spend a hot day at a cool pool. My kids love the outdoor waterpark at Crystal Mountain. Or you could ride a slide at Fun Country or Pirates Cove.

 

34. Try a new restaurant – either new to you or new to town. Check out Soul Hole in downtown Traverse City or Mission Table on Old Mission Peninsula.

 

35.  Shop the farmer’s markets, snack from your purchase as you move vendor to vendor in support of local agriculture.

 

36.  Drink riesling. OK, it’s my favorite and I suppose you could choose another wine. But before you decide, try a flight at Uncorked and I know you’ll walk away with one you like. Or just buy the t-shirt at Left Foot Charley and support the riesling movement in theory.

 

37.  Explore the old state hospital grounds inside the Grand Traverse Commons, also known as The Village. Sip wine at Tastes of Black Star Farms, Have an Underground Cheescake on a stick and end up at Stellas for dinner.

 

38.  Watch a movie at The State Theatre in Traverse City or The Garden in Frankfort. Restored classic theatres where the movies are great, and so are the prices.

 

39.  Eat a boom chunka cookie on the patio at Cherry Republic on a trip to Glen Arbor. Stop by Art’s Tavern for a delicious burger. Discover the beautiful jewelry at Becky Thatcher Designs. And for a real treat, dinner at Blu. The best fine dining around.

 

40.  Drink where the locals drink. Grab at pint at Right Brain Brewery among their mug-toting members. Perhaps something with an unusual ingredient like basil or wasabi.

 

41.  Walk the pier to the Frankfort lighthouse, preferably on a foggy evening when the light streams out in rays, or early morning when the anglers are casting and waiting for the bite to begin.

 

42.  Take a slow boat ride along the shore. Get a new perspective of the cottages along the lakeshore. Sailboat, paddleboat or pontoon, whatever works. No boat? How about a ride on the Tall Ship or the Nauticat in Traverse City or a Dunes Cruise in Frankfort.

 

43.  Walk and shop your way through Fishtown in Leland. Pick up some smoked whitefish at Carlsons Fish Market or a pretzel bread sandwich from the Village Cheese Shanty. And for dinner, don’t miss The Bluebird–with my favorite pea & peanut salad.

 

44.  Spend a rainy day at the bowling alley. Wilderness Crossings is the perfect place to entertain the kiddos when the sun is hiding. Bowling, glow golf, arcades and a restaurant for mom and dad.

 

45.  Swim in a river. Let the current pull you along as you try to keep you bottom off the bottom. Relax and drift as the water sweeps your cares away.

 

46.  Bike or walk a beautiful trail. Check out the TART trail in Traverse City or the Betsie Valley Trail that winds from Elberta all the way to Crystal Mountain.

 

47.  Vintage treasures are waiting. Shop for flea market finds or antiques. From the Cherryland Antique Mall and Red Dresser in Traverse City to the Emporium in Beulah, your shabby chic find awaits.

 

48.  Leave footprints in the sand. Take off your shoes and feel the grainy wet sand massage your toes with every step.

 

49.  Read a book on the beach. I look forward to the new Janet Evanovich novel every summer. Need a good local read? Try The Bookstore in Frankfort, Brilliant Books in Suttons Bay or Horizon Books in Traverse City.

 

50.  Take a nap. Lie in a hammock until you drift off with the breeze, stretch out on a beach towel or nod off in an adorondack chair. Rest and relax. It’s summer.

By |2010-06-23T11:07:40+00:00June 23rd, 2010|Hometown Highlights, Traverse City|0 Comments

Free Fishing Weekend 6/12 – 6/13

Salmon fishing in Lake Michigan photo Get Your ‘Fish On’ this Weekend

 

Fishing is a great way to enjoy the beautiful lakes and rivers up North. And this weekend, June 12-13,  there’s no fee to fish. Michigan residents and out-of-town visitors can enjoy 2 days of fee-free fishing for all species. Fishing regulations still apply, but there is no license required thanks to the Department of Natural Resources Free Fishing Weekend. Twice a year the DNR offers free fishing weekends to encourage everyone to pick up a rod and cast for the "big one".

 

So whether you’re camping and want to cast a line with the kids, or you prefer to hop aboard a charter for some big lake action, this is the perfect weekend to get the fishing bug. I say, "Fish On!"

 

 

By |2010-06-11T10:30:57+00:00June 11th, 2010|Benzie, Events, Leelanau, Traverse City|0 Comments

Colanta Walker Dairy Festival at The Village

Colantha Walker Dairy Festival logoA Day of Celebration for one Fabulous, Famous Cow

 

In the 1920s the star resident of the State Hospital in Traverse City was none other than a prize heifer named Colantha. At the time, the average milk production for a dairy cow was just under 4,000 lbs. And then along came a cow named Colantha whose record production in 1926 was 22,918 lbs in one year!

She was so revered by the residents and staff that upon her death a huge party was held in her honor and a special headstone carved in her memory. Now, with a new community developing at the Village, they want to bring that celebratory spirit back in her honor.

 

The first annual Colatha Walker Dairy Festival will take place on Sunday, June 13th in The Village at Grand Traverse Commons. Celebrate the famous cow with fun, food and special events in her honor.

 

Festival Schedule
10am-Noon Pancake Breakfast
10am-3pm Farmers Market
10am-7pm Food, Art & Merch Vendors
Noon-1pm Public Parade to Colantha’s Headstone @ Barns
1pm-7pm Live Music (Sister Wilene et al)
2pm-3:30pm Great Grilled Cheese Grill-off
5pm-7pm Street Dance

There will also be Food Demonstrations, Wagon Rides, Kid’s Activities, Wine & Cheese Pairings along with Milk & Cookie Pairings for the kids, thoughout the day!

 

For more details, check out www.thevillagetc.com.

By |2010-06-11T10:13:15+00:00June 11th, 2010|Attractions, Events, Traverse City|0 Comments

Community Open House at the Opera House 6-6

Open House graphic for Opera HouseCity Opera House Introduces the 2010-2011 Performing Arts Series

 

The historic City Opera House is celebrating a new season of performing arts entertainment with a FREE community open house on Sunday, June 6th from 11am to 3pm.

The 2010-2011 Auto-Owners Insurance Performing Arts Series will be highlighted during the event. There will be ticket giveaways, family fun activities including face painting, balloon animals and even a caricaturist.

Meet the staff and board of directors, pick up a copy of the new performing arts series brochure, take a tour and "test drive" seats – all while enjoying light refreshments generously donated by Morsels Bite-Sized Bakery + Gourmet Coffee, Trattoria Stella and Elk Rapids Sweet Shop.

For more information please visit cityoperahouse.org or call 231.941.8082 for more details.

By |2010-06-02T12:37:56+00:00June 2nd, 2010|Events, Traverse City|0 Comments

Pirate's Cove Raises Money for Wounded Soldiers

Putting For Patriots graphic“Putting for Patriots” Event at Pirates Cove

 

Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf, in Traverse City, Michigan will host the Fourth Annual “Putting for Patriots” fundraiser from Saturday, May 15 through Monday, May 31.  This national event will occur simultaneously at 36 Pirate’s Cove, Pirate’s Island and Jungle Golf miniature golf courses throughout the United States. 

 

This May event will culminate on Memorial Day weekend and support three charities, which serve our wounded, their families and survivors of the fallen.  These organizations include: “Hope For The Warriors”, “Homes for Our Troops” and “TAPS—Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors.”  Pirate’s Cove, Jungle Golf and Pirate’s Island will donate a percentage of their total sales on Sunday, May 30.  In addition, from May 14 through May 31, each golf course will accept donations to be turned over to the three charities.  Since its inception, this event has raised over $57,000.

“Memorial Day was specifically founded to remember those who died serving our nation,” notes Brad Graft, Pirate’s Cove Partner and Regional Director.  “The Pirate’s Cove / Pirate’s Island family thought it appropriate to establish an annual event to serve charities that assist our living veterans and the survivors of fallen military members.  These are men and women who have sacrificed so much for our freedom.”

Pirate’s Cove and Pirate’s Island operate 36 miniature golf courses throughout the United States.  For more information, visit their Web sites at www.piratescove.com, www.piratesislandgolf.com, and www.junglegolfminigolf.com . Additional information on the above charities can be found by accessing their Web sites:  www.hopeforthewarriors.org, www.homesforourtroops.org and www.taps.org.

By |2010-05-20T10:05:11+00:00May 20th, 2010|Attractions, Events, Traverse City|0 Comments

Raclette & "Gewurzling" Tasting Event at Left Foot Charley

Left Foot Charley Introduces "Gewurzling" at Special Tasting Event Friday, January 29th

Left Foot Charley Winery partners with Werner and Margrit Kuehnis to share a traditional Swiss meal – a half wheel of Raclette cheese grilled with potatoes, Black Forest ham, country style bread, pickled veggies, fresh fruit and assorted Swiss sweets. Left Foot Charley introduces the 2009 "Gewurzling" on tap. You guessed it…Gewurztraminer and Riesling blended and served *loose from the tank. Additional Left Foot Charley wines to be named later, and hard cider will be included.

Call 231-995-0500
to reserve your ticket for this event. $35 per person

You will not want to miss this tasty event!

*Loose (adj.)\LUS: (1) not rigidly fastened; (2) not tense, informal;
(3) an Italian convention describing wine sold direct from tank.

By |2010-01-27T15:37:37+00:00January 27th, 2010|Events, Traverse City, Wineries|0 Comments

Downtown TC Chili Cook-Off 1/16

Chili Cook-Off to Heat Up Downtown Traverse City

 

Warm up your winter at the 16th Annual Downtown Chili Cook-Off on January 16. Participants can sample the mild to the wild as the area’s top restaurants vie for awards in various categories.  Northern Michigan’s ultimate chili challenge takes place from 11:00 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Park Place Dome in Downtown Traverse City. 

Area restaurants will be cooking up their special recipes as they compete in eight different categories – 1, 2 and 3-alarm, white, vegetarian, no bean, seafood and ethnic as well as the coveted “people’s choice” award.  The event will also be feature two organic chilies!

Chili lovers can choose a sampler of eight chilies for $8 or single bowls of their favorites for $4.  Pepsi products will also be available.  All proceeds from the event help support such Downtown community activities as Friday Night Live, the Halloween walk, the Downtown Art Walk, holiday activities and many other free downtown events throughout the year.

In an effort to reduce waste at community events, in 2009 the DTCA made an investment into trays for the Downtown Chili Cook-Off, eliminating cardboard pizza boxes. Previously, over 1,100 pizza boxes were disposed of and recycled when possible at the event. The plastic trays make for very little waste to be created at such a large event. All plastic bottles and soda cans are also recycled.

 

Here’s a peek at who will be competing:

Blue Tractor Cook Shop                                Oryana                                  
Catch Island Grill                                           Red Ginger
Cherry Republic                                             Scalawags
Freshwater Lodge                                         Schelde’s Grille & Spirits
Lil Bo Pub & Grille                                         Serenity Tea Bar & Cafe
Minervas                                                        Slabtown Burgers & Cafe                  
Mt. Holiday                                                    Travino Wine & Grille          
Omelette Shoppe                                
                                               
 
Morsels Bite Sized Bakery & Gourmet Coffee will be serving cornbread morsels to compliment the competing chilies.

The Annual Chili Cook-off is hosted by the over 200 merchants, restaurants and businesses who are members of the Downtown Traverse City Association.  For more information or to volunteer, call the DTCA office at (231) 922-2050 or email colleen@downtowntc.com.

By |2010-01-12T20:39:10+00:00January 12th, 2010|Attractions, Events, Restaurants, Traverse City|0 Comments

Festival of Trains Returns to Heritage Center

festival of trains imageGrand Traverse Heritage Center welcomes railway fans to 2009 Festival of Trains

Monday, December 14th through Sunday, January 3rd at the Grand Traverse Heritage Center, 322 Sixth Street, in Traverse City.

 

A special holiday celebration takes place each year in the heart of Traverse City. Thousands of visitors arrive at the old Library to stare in awe at the amazing miniature landscape before them. Dozens of model trains, in all shapes and sizes, traverse elaborate landscapes throughout the Grand Traverse Heritage Center. The Festival of Trains is the largest fundraiser of the year for the G.T.H.C., a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving, promoting, and presenting the history of Traverse City and the Grand Traverse region.

Volunteers from the Northern Michigan Railroad Club begin assembling the amazing display around Labor Day. When the holiday season arrives, and guests fill the rooms, they’re immersed in the sights, sounds and smells of the railroad. Children gather close to the table-height displays and peer anxiously around corners waiting for the next train to zip past. Whie the engines and tracks are a ‘look but don’t touch’ exhibit, there are interactive areas where kids can control track direction, blow the whistle or raise a drawbridge.

This year Thomas the Tank engine fans are in for a special treat. An interactive cab station will allow them to step up and control the trains!

The Festival of Trains offers a train-related raffle and conductor’s gift shop with holiday and railroad themed gifts for the entire family.

 

Hours
Hours for the popular festival are 2pm-7pm December 14th-18th.  Then, Mondays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m December 19th – Jan. 3rd.  On Sundays & New Year’s Day, the trains will run from noon to 4 pm. Closed Christmas Day.

Tickets
Admission is $5 per adult, $3 per senior (age 65 plus), $2 per youth (ages 4 through 17), and children 3 and under are free. A family pass is available at $20 for unlimited visits to the festival by parents, children, grandparents, and grandchildren.

By |2009-12-09T09:04:31+00:00December 9th, 2009|Attractions, Check This Out, Events, Traverse City|0 Comments

Celebrate the Snowflakes at Buds 12/5

It’s a Snowflake Christmas at Bud’s in Interlochen

 

Winter is coming, along with snowflakes and Santa. Celebrate this Saturday, December 5th with fun activities for the family at Bud’s in Interlochen.

  • Breakfast with Santa 9am-1pm
  • Meet two of Santa’s reindeer
  • Live music from Barbara Jordan 12pm-3pm
  • Snowflake crafts
  • Sample treats and specialty foods all day
  • Free gift wrapping

 

Stop in and start celebrating the magical season. Buds is located on M-137 in Interlochen. For more information on Buds upcoming events check out their website: www.budsisback.com.

By |2009-12-01T10:15:34+00:00December 1st, 2009|Benzie, Check This Out, Events, Restaurants|0 Comments