Dear Crabby, Have you ever been to Mackinac Island, MI?

Dear Crabby,

We were looking for a fun new experience in Northern Michigan when we came across Mackinac Island. I was wondering if you had vacationed there, and if you could give us any idea if it is worth taking the kids up there?

Sincerely, Michigan Mom

Dear Michigan Mom,

Yes, I have a long history with Mackinac Island and all the wonderful things they have to offer. Back in the 1970’s, I was very big into CB radios and was taking one of my first trips up to the island. I made contact with this old-timer named OJ that lived on the island year-round and was actually born and raised there. I immediately went over and visited with him. He was very interesting to talk with. Of course, there is all the known history and information that you can gather off the internet nowadays. The island has been inhabited since about 200 A.D. by Native Americans, then European explorers found it, and eventually the DearCrabbyisland was made into a British military fort during the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. Still today plenty of the history remains intact, along with the fact that they do not allow motorized vehicles on the island, so there is the constant “clap, clap” of horses and the wonderful aroma of what they leave behind to set the backdrop. They are known worldwide for their fudge, and I will comment that it is rightfully so. One of my favorite activities to do there is to ride a bicycle around the perimeter of the island. This is about an 8-mile trek and takes about an hour or two. There are quite a few caves and natural wonders to stop and see along the way, all the while enjoying the view of Lake Huron. Going counterclockwise around the island, one of the first attractions is called “Arch Rock” and you will immediately see why it is so named. It is a very narrow, natural arch made out of the rock. My friend OJ told me that when he was a young boy, a friend of his bet him a nickel that he could not walk across it, so he took the bet and did it! Of course, today it is completely closed off with railings; you are not even allowed to get within 20 feet of the place. After a nice ride around the island, I always enjoy finding a quiet place to sit and watch the boats while I eat lunch. There are several little cafes and diners where this is made possible. There is also some very upscale dining for when you are celebrating an anniversary or just want a little extra special night out. The Iroquois Hotel has a very pleasant restaurant right on the water called The Carriage House that has a breathtaking view of the harbor. My friend OJ’s daughter worked there and would make sure that we had first class treatment and a free dessert! For some of the first time visitors, the tour of the historical Fort Holmes is always interesting.  You can also swing by the Governor’s Mansion and The Grand Hotel. There have been a few movies filmed at this prestigious hotel, and you’ll feel like you stepped back in time about 100 years when you walk in there. So in conclusion, yes, I highly recommend Mackinac Island for everyone who is interested. It will be well worth your time and money. To help you plan your visit, read Best of Mackinac Island with 7 Tips by Michael Dwyer.

Sincerely, Dear Crabby

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