Headlands again earning international recognition for its starry skies, resource protection

Here's the image that accompanied the BuzzFeed piece.

We love it when Headlands gets the national attention it deserves! Emmet County's Headlands International Dark Sky Park has landed on the "13 Best Places to Stargaze in the U.S." as determined by BuzzFeed Life, a huge online provider of videos and Web content that boasts over a billion views of its content regularly.

On BuzzFeed Life, writer Jessica Probus calls the best stargazing spots, "AKA your new bucket list." About Headlands she writes, "This Michigan park on the Straits of Mackinac is one of the darkest spots in the eastern U.S. where you not only can see thousands of stars, but also sometimes the Northern Lights. Pro Tip: The Dark Sky Discovery Trail, added in 2012, takes you directly from the entrance to the park to the official viewing area on a one-mile paved path."

To read the complete BuzzFeed article, click here!

Great blog post about Headlands, read here!

We had the distinct pleasure of being the subject of an awesome blog by David Harrell for Pure Michigan, about his experience at the Headlands over the summer. The writer of "The Crooked Porch" blogs shared his family's experience marveling at the "Pure Michigan Milky Way" from the Headlands, spurred to visit during our "Lights Out Challenge" in August. These Harbor Springs residents used that night's Lights Out endeavor to visit the park and try to catch some falling stars during the meteor shower that evening.

An excerpt from these locals having a new experience in their Headlands park:

"Riley was intrigued by the park itself, especially the forest. We walked along the shore, stopping to watch the sun sink beneath the distant waves. We found some rocks stacked in funny little towers and a tangle of roots exposed along the beach. We took pictures, tossed around the football, sat in the grass and talked about the stars and why the twilight sky gets dressed in silken gowns of orange, purple, blue and red. When the first stars awoken in the darkening sky, we opened an app on David’s iPhone and learned their names. We were shocked to discover that two of the brightest stars visible in the early twilight hours were Saturn and Mars ...

"Once darkness enveloped the park, the show began. Twice this year my family has stayed up late to watch fireworks. I can’t count the number of times we watched movies past midnight. Yet, as I stared up into space, I couldn’t help but wonder why we never stay up to watch the stars. As exciting as fireworks are, or as entertaining a movie or TV show is, nothing could inspire the awe in my children as deeply as staring up into the heavens."

Read his complete blog here!

Renowned astronomer David Levy to offer program at Headlands Sept. 20

David Levy has discovered hundreds of comets and asteroids.

'A night watchman's journey: My life and hard times as a searcher of comets'

NEW location: Dark Sky Viewing Area (follow the signs in the park) at the Headlands International Dark Sky Park, Mackinaw City

Time: 7 to 9 p.m.
Program note: David Levy's program will be held under the Festival Tent and will take place rain or shine!

The Headlands International Dark Sky Park and Emmet County are pleased to announce special guest David H. Levy for the Sept. 20, 2014, program, "A night watchman's journey: My life and hard times as a searcher of comets."

Levy is arguably one of the most enthusiastic and famous amateur astronomers of our time.  Although he has never taken a class in astronomy, he has made 23 comet discoveries, the most famous being the Shoemaker-Levy 9 comet that collided with Jupiter in 1994. He has also discovered more than 500 asteroids, has received an Emmy for the documentary Three Minutes to Impact, and has five honorary doctorates in science. Levy has written more than three dozen books, is a regular contributor to several astronomy magazines, and has appeared on television programs featured on the Discovery and the Science Channels.  His PhD combines astronomy and English Literature.  Currently, he is the editor of the web magazine Sky’s Up!  while sustaining an international lecture schedule and continuing to hunt for comets and asteroids.

The Headlands program is offered in partnership with the Northern Michigan Astronomy Club and it occurs the night of September's waning Moon phase, which means skies will be clear for spectacular views of the thickest part of the Milky Way and the Summer Triangle.

To read complete program details, click here

A portrait of Ken Teysen, painted by artist Jane Cardinal of Good Hart.

First Annual Essence of Emmet History Award winners announced!

A lifetime committed to preserving and sharing Emmet County’s history. A selfless volunteer who has helped bring history to life using modern-day technology and creativity. A fun-loving program that shows those watching how a popular game used to be played in “the olden days.”

These descriptions represent the winners of the First Annual Essence of Emmet History Awards! The Essence of Emmet is a collaborative of a dozen Emmet County historical organizations who work together on projects that preserve, promote and share our one-of-a-kind history in Northwest Michigan.

The winners will be presented with their awards during the next Essence of Emmet program, Sept. 24, 2014, 6 to 8 p.m. at the Emmet County Fairgrounds Community Building in Petoskey (see program description below, on this page).

The winners of the 2014 Essence of Emmet History Awards are:

Lifetime Achievement Award: Ken Teysen  (posthumously), Mackinaw City, nominated by Jane Cardinal of Good Hart.

Distinguished Volunteer Award: Sheryl Childs, nominated by Susie Safford, President of the Mackinaw Area Historical Society.

Special Program: Petoskey Mossback Base Ball Team, nominated by Brian Sommerfield.

To read complete details about the awardees and how they'll be recognized, click here.

Congratulations to our winners!

'158 Years of Perseverance:' Tribe's reaffirmation subject of Sept. 24 Essence of Emmet program

President Bill Clinton signs Public Law 103-324, reaffirming LTBB’s federal status

‘158 years of perseverance: The story of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians’

First annual History Awards will also be given during this program!

The year 2014 marks the 20th anniversary of the reaffirmation of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians as a federally recognized Indian tribe. On September 21, 1994, President Bill Clinton signed Public Law 103-324, reaffirming LTBB’s federal status. This journey originally started in 1836, as the tribe signed a major treaty with the United States to secure lands, rights and provisions in their ancestral land of Northern Michigan.For the next 158 years, the LTBB Odawa would fight to have those treaty rights upheld and recognized. LTBB Odawa was the first tribe to have gone through the federal reaffirmation process.

Join Emmet County and the Essence of Emmet collaborative for this historical lecture series program exploring this anniversary. A panel of individuals who were part of the reaffirmation for LTBB, historians and Odawa elders will tell why it was so important for the tribe to pursue its status, the history leading up to 1994 and what Northern Michigan means for the Odawa.

The event will take place at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014 at the Emmet County Fairgrounds Community Building in Petoskey, 1129 Charlevoix Ave./U.S. 31. It is free and open to the public and refreshments will be served.

In addition to the program, the Essence of Emmet collaborative will award its first annual history awards on this evening. After receiving numerous nominees over the last several months, the group will announce recipients who have demonstrated a commitment to preserving, protecting and sharing the history of Emmet County.

To read more about the Sept. 24 program, click here.

Status of the moving of the sloop 'the Welcome' back to Emmet County

Emmet County staff have been receiving numerous inquiries about the status of the sloop the Welcome and when it will be making its trip to Mackinaw City from Traverse City. At this time, no firm date has been set for this to occur. The move is dependent upon weather conditions and the schedule of the company that is doing the moving of this large vessel.

There are numerous details involved in moving a ship this large. We will keep the public informed of moving plans when a firm date has been set for the Welcome. To read more about the plans for the Welcome, click here.

Is there a more beautiful Big Green Gym than in Emmet County? We think not.

Help Emmet County win the 2014 Big Green Gym Challenge!

Join Team Emmet County to bring grant dollars to NW Michigan for trail upkeep

Emmet County has the best Big Green Gym in Michigan, and Emmet County is hoping to prove it to the state of Michigan!  You can help us by taking part in the 2014 statewide Big Green Gym Blues Challenge, sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.

This free, eight-week competition encourages participants of all ages to commit to improving their health by exercising in Michigan’s outdoor parks and recreation spaces and joining their local communities to compete in a physical activity competition. All you need to do to participate is register online and log your hours of physical activity from Aug. 2 through Sept. 27!

Each year, the winner of the Big Green Gym Challenge receives grant funding from the challenge’s sponsors. Emmet County has put together a team with the hopes of winning this year’s challenge and using the grant funding for maintenance of the Little Traverse Wheelway and the North Western State Trail.

“By taking part in the Big Green Challenge with Emmet County, you’re not only helping yourself become more active and physically fit, but you’re also benefitting your community,” said Laurie Gaetano, Emmet County Parks and Recreation Director. “We have the most beautiful surroundings in Northwest Michigan for getting outside and taking part in physical activities, and this is a great time of year to enjoy our own Big Green Gym here in Emmet County!”




Imagine magazine 2014


We are thrilled to distribute the 2014-15 issue of Emmet County's annual promotional magazine, Imagine

Emmet County's annual magazine, Imagine, features the people, places, organizations and communities that make Emmet County a one-of-a-kind place to live, work and play. Up 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 that further showcase the unparalleled natural beauty and the residents who are invested in making Northwest Michigan a place like no other. An expanded section on the features of Emmet County is also a new addition to this sixth annual edition.

This year's cover image was captured by Harbor House Publishers photographer Philip Hutchinson, along the famed Inland Waterway, a 30+ mile of chain of inland lakes and rivers that begins in Emmet County and flows northeasterly out to Lake Huron. It's one of Emmet County's most beautiful natural assets and is the perfect reflection of life Up North!

To have a complimentary copy of Imagine magazine mailed to you, contact its writer/editor Beth Anne Eckerle with your mailing address: beckerle@emmetcounty.org, or (231) 348-1704.


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.