Harbor Springs, Mackinaw City are winners of the Annual Lights Out Northern Michigan Challenges!

The communities of Harbor Springs and Mackinaw City achieved greater darkness over their cross-lake peers on the night of July 29 during Emmet County's Annual Lights Out Northern Michigan Challenge!

Each year, Emmet County and its Headlands International Dark Sky Park initiates this fun, friendly, community-building challenge between the towns of Petoskey and Harbor Springs and Mackinaw City and St. Ignace. The goal: To see which town can achieve greater darkness, as measured by a sky quality meter before the event and during.

"Congratulations to all of the communities that took part, switched off their lights and enjoyed the starshine on Tuesday night!" said Mary Stewart Adams, Dark Sky Park Program Director. Adams said all four communities have light meter readings in a range that indicate "Northern Michigan is already making great strides toward protecting the night sky."

The communities of Harbor Springs and Mackinaw City will be given awards at a date in the near future!

National Geographic: Petoskey, Harbor among 'America's Best Beach Towns'


"Is there a magic formula for the perfect beach town? No, but America could offer up more than a few candidates if they were doling out the title" -- including the Emmet County towns of Petoskey and Harbor Springs, according to National Geographic!

The world-renowned publication has come out with a list of America's Best Beach Towns, based on its staff's choices. Joining Northwest Michigan in the rankings are places like Cayucos, California; Cape May, New Jersey; Carmel-by-the-Sea, California; and St. Petersburg, Florida.

About Northern Michigan, the writers noted: "At the top of Michigan's mitten is a Midwestern summer paradise with idyllic waterfront lake towns -- Petoskey, Charlevoix and Harbor Springs -- that hearken to summer vacations in simpler times. Ernest Hemingway spent his boyhood summers here and captured the area in an early novella, 'The Torrents of Spring.' Standout diversions include ... the 26-mile Little Traverse Wheelway that links all three charming towns ..."

To read the complete article, click here!


Pre-election roundup: Primary Election takes place Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014

Voters will head to the polls on Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014, for the Michigan Primary Election. Voters must vote straight ticket - Republican or Democrat - in a Primary Election.

In Emmet County, polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. at your usual polling location; if you don't know where that is, check your voter registration card or call the County Clerk's office at (231) 348-1744.

Emmet County's Commissioners are up for re-election this year; the only contested race in the Primary is between Republican candidates for District 3, Charlie MacInnis and Dan Robinson. The other six districts are uncontested in the Primary.

Local voters will also be asked several millage requests and renewals, including in Littlefield and Readmond Townships. County-wide, voters will be asked to approve a renewal of 0.25 mills (25 cents per $1,000 of taxable value) for ambulance service. The renewal would be levied for four years, from 2014 through 2017, for the purpose of providing advanced life support ambulance services to the residents of Emmet County.

In addition, Emmet County voters will be asked to renew a millage for senior citizen services. The 0.50 mills would also be levied for four years for the purpose of planning, coordinating and providing services to the county's senior citizens.

On a statewide level, there are contested races for both Democrats and Republicans in the 37th District Senate Seat, which includes Emmet County. The 1st Congressional District seat is also contested in the Primary, with incumbent Republication Dan Benishek challenged by Alan Arcand. The 107th State Representative seat is also contested in the primary, with incumbent Republican Frank Foster facing a challenge by Lee Chatfield. The 107th includes Emmet County.

For sample ballots and more election information, visit www.emmetcounty.org/elections/



FAIR TIME magazine 2014 offers complete details for the fun-filled Fair Week Aug. 19-24!

We're only about a month away from the 109th annual Emmet-Charlevoix County Fair! And the excitement keeps growing each year with new events and old favorites drawing thousands to the Petoskey Fairgrounds each August.

This year's Fair events for the public take place Aug. 19-24. Highlights include Country Music Star JOE NICHOLS in concert on Thursday, Aug. 21, beginning at 7 p.m. with opening act Ryan Broshear.

Hear Joe Nichols' new hit, "Yeah," by clicking here, currently No. 8 on Billboard's Top 10 country songs! (Click here for ticket info)

Also new to the 2014 Fair: Rodeo action! Head to the Grandstand on Wednesday evening, Aug. 20, for KP Rodeo excitement with the Michigan High School Rodeo Association's show beginning at 7 p.m.

Back as fan-favorites are the Autocross races on Friday, Aug. 22, and the Monster Truck Shoot-out on Saturday, Aug. 23!

And special to this year's Fair Time magazine, read about  Agnes Shaw's 20 years as Fair Manager.

For complete ticket and event information, click on the PDF below of Fair Time magazine or visit the home page of the Fair at www.emmetcounty.org/fair/


2014 Emmet County Photo Contest: The WATERS of Northwest Michigan!

Sunset reflects in the waters of Pickerel Lake, at Camp Petosega.

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.

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 beckerle@emmetcounty.org

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.

For complete contest details, click here!



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.