Visit the Fair at www.emmetchxfair.org! Fair week is Aug. 25-30, 2015


Signage is being installed in the park now that construction has begun, as of Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2015.

Regular construction updates: www.MIdarkskypark.org

Construction of a new program facility, restrooms and observatory got under way on Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2015, at the Headlands International Dark Sky Park. The construction project will require access restrictions in the park for Dark Sky Viewing and vehicle and pedestrian traffic. During the day time hours, large construction vehicles will be moving through the park regularly. Vehicle and pedestrian traffic is not allowed past marked barriers on the main entrance road, near the junction toward the Guest House.

Construction maps are posted throughout the property advising visitors where they can gather for Dark Sky Viewing. Trails for day use remain open, except where they may intersect with the construction site. Those wishing to view the night sky will need to park at the main entrance and walk in about one mile to access the Lake Michigan shoreline viewing area, a quiet cove with a both rocky and sandy shoreline. Parking is extremely limited at the access point to this newly designated viewing area, and large vehicles such as campers or trailers will not be able to turn around. Complete details about the construction project and photos to assist visitors to the park can be found on the Headlands web site, www.MIdarkskypark.org


Essence of Emmet History Awards nomination deadline is Sept. 1!


Do you know someone who does great things protecting and promoting Emmet County's history? We want to hear about them ... and give them an award!

Regional history group announces 2015 recognition program for 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 its second annual Essence of Emmet History Awards program for 2015.

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. “It was a real tribute to see the number of individuals nominated during our inaugural year in 2014 and we had a fun celebration tied to one of our history programs in the fall. We plan to do the same type of program this year in September.”

For complete details about how to nominate an organization, individual or group for an award, nomination form and for the various categories to be awarded, click here!


New trail tells the story of McGulpin Point Lighthouse - starting 9,000 years ago!

The George McGulpin family is the first you'll meet along the trail.

The story of McGulpin Point Lighthouse and Historic Site spans thousands of years, from our earliest inhabitants who made it their home to the Europeans who arrived and settled the grounds. Later, when shipping began in full force through the Straits of Mackinac, its story became that of a lighthouse, helping captains navigate the tumultuous waters between Michigan's Lower and Upper Peninsulas.

A new trail at the lighthouse interprets those various stages of the property, with cultural "docents" along the way telling the story of these important historical grounds. The trail was recently installed and includes five stations from the top of the bluff near the lighthouse itself and down to the waterfront at the Straits. Costumed re-enactors illustrate the eras of the McGulpins, McAlpins, Native warriors Nissowaquet and Charles de Langlade, and artist Jane Cardinal of Good Hart painted a Native man and his two sons carving a huge sturgeon -- 9 feet in length! -- from 9,000 years ago that depicts life at the water's edge.

There is no charge to visit the lighthouse, walk the trail or climb the lighthouse tower for a commanding view of the Straits and the Mackinac Bridge! The lighthouse is open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily through October. The address is 500 Headlands Road, Mackinaw City, MI, 49701.

The trail was designed by Communications Director Beth Anne Eckerle, with historical experts Sandy Planisek and Eric Hemenway assisting on content.


IMAGINE magazine 2015

Emmet County's annual magazine, Imagine, is now available! This year's digital publication includes a number of enhanced features, including new videos and social media sharing capabilities on each article. A refreshed design complements the annual features that tell the stories of those who live, work, play and invest in Emmet County, Michigan.

To access the digital Imagine magazine, click here!

If you would like to request a copy of the print version to be mailed to you, at no charge, email Imagine's Editor Beth Anne Eckerle at beckerle@emmetcounty.org or call (231) 348-1704. The cover features a photo of Wilderness State Park.

We hope you enjoy reading about the people, places, businesses and organizations that make Emmet County a place like no other!



'Essence of Emmet' history magazine Part II


Essence of Emmet PART I          
Essence of Emmet PART II

The second in a four-part historical series covering the history of Emmet County, called the "Essence of Emmet" magazine, is available!

Part II covers the "Century of Change" in Emmet County, from 1813 to 1917. During this timeframe, the way of life in Northwest Michigan underwent drastic changes, from a mostly Native American population to the arrival of the French and ultimately the British. It was the era that saw the railroads arrive and with them, abundant tourism. Marketing of Emmet County began, and some of our "firsts" arrived -- the first doctor, the first architect, and many others. It also was the era that had tremendous impact on the lives of our Odawa residents, who were faced with assimilation, treaties to remain on their lands and pressures to change the only way of life they'd ever known.

If you would like a complimentary copy of the Essence of Emmet, contact its editor, Beth Anne Eckerle, at beckerle@emmetcounty.org, or call (231) 348-1704. The magazine series is produced by a collaborative of Emmet County historical organizations, with credentialed historians as writers and contributors.

Essence of Emmet editions: Part I was published in January 2014, covering pre-contact through 1812. Part III will publish in January 2016, covering 1918-1960; the final installment, Part IV, will be out in January 2017, covering 1961 through contemporary times.

Visitors' Guide showcases the best of Emmet County!


Take a look at Emmet County's highlights in our new mini visitors' guide, which will be available just after Jan. 1, 2015! In it, you'll enjoy the amenities and assets that make Emmet County the one of a kind place it is to work, live and play! And as you'll see and read through the pages, Quality of Life is Everything in Emmet County.

If you'd like a complimentary copy of the Emmet County Visitors' Guide, Imagine magazine, Essence of Emmet history magazine or other maps and brochures, contact Communications Director Beth Anne Eckerle at beckerle@emmetcounty.org or by calling (231) 348-1704.

Imagine Magazine

Essence of Emmet history

Request a road map/brochures