Exploring northern Michigan: Day One

It was a beautiful day as we headed north. Our first stop was River Stop Cafe in the artsy township of Newaygo.  Besides having delicous food and great coffee the decor was something else. Newaygo is famous for it hunting and fishing sporting events. The upturned boat over the counter was therefore very appropriate.

And right across the road was evidence that the art of knitting is still very much alive!  It wasn’t just a “wool shop” but catered for the modern creative knitter and quilter and their every imaginable need!  Michelle, please note the wonderful aray of ultra large and colorful buttons.

I had really been looking forward to our next stop which was to visit the family farmhouse where Bruce’s great grandparents settled after migrated from Germany. No one lives there permanently now,  however they have kept the house in the family and it is pretty well in its original state.  We had thought of spending the night there but Crystal, Bruces Mom, commented that it might be a little “too rustic.”  Once there, we had to agree with her.  Note the old coal range stove, the original iron bed and dressing table as well as the two milk-can looking containers in the basement which were used for making sauerkraut.

We made it up to Traverse City around sunset.  I loved the city which is right on the water. I could have lived there quite happily if it wasn’t so far away!  After walking around the main city center we headed for what has now become the largest cultural and art center in the region. But what we found so astonishing was that this HUGE complex built in the early 1900’s (the buildings cover a total of 200,000 square feet and extend for 1/4 mile) formally housed the primary mental asylum for the state of Michigan!  About 10 years ago the government was about to tear it down howver the public and developers intervened. It now consists of beautiful apartments as well as restaurants, galleries and community projects. We found a “before” photo as well as the current ones.

The day would not have been complete without stopping into “Joe’s  Friendly Tavern” (even though it was around 10pm.) A typical American restaurant come bar, I was surprised to see that Joe had included healthy vegetarian fritters on quenoa on the menu especially for me!  Yummy!

Good night from the northern hemisphere!   love Melva xx

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3 responses to “Exploring northern Michigan: Day One

  1. Beautiful area indeed! The contents of the bedroom in the old homestead reminds me of the furniture that was in the Crossing when we used to stay there and of course that would be from the same era. How wonderful that the building that was once used for such horrific purposes is now such a theta space! (:

  2. Lynnaire Liversedge

    Just GREAT thanks Melva – have sent off to May – she’s finally back on line up there in the bush and asking after you. Pics are gorgeous…

  3. Great that you are enjoying my trip. Mxxx

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