Annual Outdoor Lighting Forum recognition luncheon is April 22, 2014


The Petoskey-based Outdoor Lighting Forum will hold its 11th Annual Lighting Awards Luncheon on Earth Day, Tuesday, April 22, at the City Park Grill in Petoskey. Each year, the OLF shines the light on sound lighting practices in Northwest Michigan and draws attention to the issue of light pollution and how to mitigate its effects.

“This initiative is particularly meaningful in Emmet County and Northern Michigan, where we are home to the Headlands International Dark Sky Park and Michigan’s Dark Sky Coast,” said Mary Stewart Adams, the Headlands Dark Sky Park Program Director and member of the Outdoor Lighting Forum. Adams will host the luncheon on April 22, which takes place from noon to 1:30 p.m.

The public is invited to attend, for the cost of your lunch.

Presenting the event’s program will be Rod Cortright of Boyne City. Cortright is an amateur astronomer and astrophotographer; his program is titled, “Photographing the Universe from My Driveway.” Adams will also recognize regional efforts to protect the night sky during the luncheon.

To RSVP for the luncheon, please contact Adams at (231) 348-1713 or email


The Outdoor Lighting Forum works to promote the message of limiting light pollution and keeping Northern Michigan's night skies dark as possible. The effort has gained increased momentum after the designation of Emmet County's Headlands as an International Dark Sky Park. The OLF has a resource brochure available to help area residents and business owners understand the effects of good and bad lighting, with examples and ways to change for the better. To request free copies, contact Beth Anne Eckerle, Emmet County Director of Communications, at (231) 348-1704 or email her at


'A Straits Perspective' topic of April 30, 2014, Essence of Emmet free history program

Phil Porter, Director of Mackinac State Historic Parks, is one of two speakers during the April 30 event.

The Essence of Emmet historical collaborative will host another of its twice-yearly historical programs on a topic of local intrigue, on April 30, 2014, at the Fairgrounds in Petoskey.

“A Straits Perspective: Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse, shipwrecks and a new museum” is the topic for this free program that is open to the public at the Community Building at the Fairgrounds. Time is 6 to 8 p.m. No reservations are required and refreshments will be served during an intermission.

Speakers include Phil Porter, Director of Mackinac State Historic Parks that include Mackinac Island State Park, Michilimackinac State park and Mill Creek State Park, plus a number of historic sites and museums within these parks. Porter will speak first about the history of Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse, including construction of a new building at the site, the Straits of Mackinac Shipwreck Museum.

The museum will tell the story of the ships and sailors whose time on the Straits ended tragically. Featuring a variety of original objects and artifacts, including some recovered from the steamers Eber Ward and Cedarville, the museum will be housed in the reconstructed warehouse, originally built in 1890 and torn down around 1940. The museum is expected to open in July 2014.

Also speaking at the event will be Craig Wilson, the museum historian for Mackinac State Historic Parks and supervisor of staff at Colonial Michilimackinac and the Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse. Wilson will talk about shipwrecks in the Straits, using specific examples such as the Cedarville to illustrate the themes of the new shipwreck museum.

For further details and to learn more about the Essence of Emmet collaborative, click here.


Gov. Snyder announces statewide recycling initiative, names Emmet County's Elisa Seltzer to newly formed Michigan Recycling Council

Elisa Seltzer, Emmet County DPW Director, is standing in the center, next to Gov. Snyder in this group photo of the newly formed Michigan Recycling Council.

Effort will help Michigan become leader in residential recycling; Seltzer is Emmet County DPW/Recycling Director

LANSING, Mich. – Gov. Rick Snyder today announced a statewide plan designed to increase residential recycling access statewide. He also announced appointments to a nine-member Michigan Recycling Council to guide the plan’s implementation. On that council is Emmet County DPW Director Elisa Seltzer, who has helped make Emmet County a leader in the state in community recycling programs.

In his November 2012 Special Message on Energy and the Environment, Snyder called on the Department of Environmental Quality to assemble a stakeholder group tasked with developing a plan. The governor presented his plan on April 14, 2014, during a tour of Clean Tech Inc., Michigan’s largest plastic bottle recycling plant, near Monroe.

“Michigan has a strong tradition of protecting and enhancing its environment,” Snyder said. “But when it comes to recycling, we must do better. Michigan trails other Great Lakes states and much of the nation in residential recycling. It’s a complex challenge but one that we can address. This plan puts us on the right path.”

Michigan’s recycling rate for residential household waste is about 15 percent. The national average is 35 percent. A recent study concluded more than $435 million in recyclable metal, glass, paper and plastics goes from Michigan households to Michigan landfills each year.

“States with healthy recycling programs have found that, in addition to reducing pressure on landfills and helping the environment, recycling creates jobs and opens markets for recovered materials,” Snyder said. “We’ve been throwing away money for decades. Addressing this issue is simply the right thing to do, and I am pleased to announce we are committed to making Michigan a recycling leader.” The 15-point plan focuses on four key areas.

To read about those key areas and more about the Michigan Recycling Council, click here.


Introducing, the Essence of Emmet history awards!

Regional history group announces new awards recognizing area achievers in historical preservation, promotion

Throughout Northwest Michigan, individuals, volunteers and organizations are protecting and preserving this region’s rich history in ways not often recognized by the public. But without these caretakers of our past, many stories that have defined this area of Michigan would be lost to the passage of time and memory.

To recognize these extraordinary efforts in protecting, preserving and sharing our history, the Essence of Emmet – a local collaborative of organizations and individuals sharing an interest in our history – has announced it will begin an awards program.

To be eligible for the awards, the recipient(s) must be individuals and organizations dedicated to the preservation, presentation and promotion of the history and culture of Emmet County. (Individuals serving on the Essence of Emmet group are not eligible.)  Work or programs must have taken place in the last 18 months within Emmet County, though the nominated party does not need to be a resident of Emmet County.

“The Essence of Emmet group has been discovering a really vast network of people, organizations and groups in our communities who are doing fascinating, important work preserving the stories from the past,” said Phil Porter, Director of Mackinac State Historic Parks and an Essence of Emmet member.  “We felt this would be a terrific way to support and encourage these efforts and shine a light on the people doing this really great work.”

To read more about the award, how to nominate someone and to download the nomination form, click here!

2014 Photo Contest: Capture the beauty of Emmet County WATERS

Water in action at Petoskey's breakwater!

Take part in Emmet County's new photo contest!

If there is one attribute that defines Emmet County – both geographically and in the hearts and minds of its residents and visitors – it’s the abundance of water in Northwest Michigan. In the tip of Michigan’s mitten, the Great Lakes are a constant presence, and our inland lakes, rivers and wetlands are magnificent natural resources that are the source of recreation, pride and protection.

To celebrate our unique water resources, Emmet County is holding its second-annual photo contest, Emmet County WATERS. This follows on the heels of the successful 2013 Emmet County Skies photo contest, which drew photographic entries for more than 50 area photographers. The winner of the Skies photo contest was MaryJo Maguire of Harbor Springs, with her unequaled shot of clouds and sunlight amassing over Little Traverse Bay (click here to see her winning photograph!).

The Emmet County Waters contest will operate the same as the Skies challenge: Through November 30, 2014, please send your Waters photos via email to

Please include location where photo was taken with your submission. Residents and visitors are welcomed to participate, but the photos MUST be taken within the boundaries of Emmet County. The contest does include Lake Michigan and the Straits of Mackinac including and to the west of the Mackinac Bridge.

Photos will be judged by expert photographers, including Shawn Stockman-Malone, whose extraordinary images of the Northern Lights in the Upper Peninsula have circulated the globe and have been published in dozens of digital and print media outlets. Malone has been a guest speaker at the Headlands International Dark Sky Park as well.

What’s in it for the winner? The winning Waters photo will be framed and matted for the winner to keep; it will also be printed on photo board and displayed in the Emmet County Building downtown Petoskey. In addition, the winner will receive a free overnight at the Guest House at the Headlands International Dark Sky Park.

Image size should not exceed 10MB for emailing. Amateur photographers only, please. Participants agree that Emmet County may use the submitted photographs in county promotional materials at any time.

If you have questions about the Emmet County Waters photo contest, call Beth Anne Eckerle, County Communications Director, at (231) 348-1704 or email




Download the Emmet County App!

Take Emmet County with you on your smart device, cell phone or tablet by downloading our NEW app! 

  • Details about the county's parks and recreation opportunities, including McGulpin Point Lighthouse and the Headlands (with trail map);
  • Program schedule for the monthly events at the Headlands International Dark Sky Park;
  • Locator map of all the public parks within Emmet County (including city, village, township and other parks);
  • Locator map of all the historic sites in Emmet County and details;
  • Trail maps for the Little Traverse Wheelway, Headlands and Petoskey and Harbor Springs snowmobile routes;
  • Pellston Regional Airport information;
  • Links to the County's social media sites.

Download the free app and check it out! It's available now in the Google Play and iOS app stores. 



 Imagine magazine

Click here to view the online digital magazine and videos

Please note: The 2014-15 issue of Imagine magazine will be available in May 2014!

Emmet County's annual promotional magazine, Imagine, is available online and in print. The 2013-14 issue includes features on the people, places, organizations and communities that make Emmet County a one-of-a-kind place to live, work and play. Here, quality of life is everything.

This year's magazine, published by Harbor House Publishers in Boyne City, also includes a number of enhancements, including numerous videos throughout that further showcase the unparalleled natural beauty and the residents who are invested in making Northwest Michigan a place like no other.

We hope you enjoy the magazine! Contact its editor/writer, Beth Anne Eckerle, with any comments:, or (231) 348-1704. To have a complimentary copy of the print version mailed to you, contact Piehl at the email or phone number above.