County Meetings & Events Calendar

Fall Mushrooming Workshop/Emmet Conservation District
Oct 3 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 am
Emmet Conservation District Annual Meeting
Oct 14 @ 6:00 pm – 12:00 am
College Night at NCMC
Oct 14 @ 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

North Central Michigan College invites high school juniors and seniors and their parents to College Night, Wednesday, October 14. The event will be held on the Petoskey campus in the Student and Community Resource Center from 6:30 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.

High school students and parents can meet with representatives from more than 50 public and private colleges and universities from throughout the Midwest about higher education options, admission requirements, programs of study, costs of college, campus activities and residence life. Armed Forces representatives will also be available. A North Central financial aid advisor will be present to answer questions about federal financial aid for college.

The program is offered to the community by North Central as a free service for college-bound students and families, and is supported by the Michigan Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admission Officers.

North Central Michigan College is an open-door community college based in Petoskey, with additional locations offering classes and services in Cheboygan and Gaylord. North Central’s mission is to provide educational, economic and cultural opportunities for student learning, personal growth and community improvement.  North Central is an Achieving the Dream Leader College and a Military-Friendly School®.

Business After Hours, Petoskey Chamber
Oct 15 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm



Area businesses and staff are invited to Business After Hours on Thursday, October 15, 5:00-7:00 p.m. at Petoskey Bay View Country Club. This event is our annual local foods theme that will feature local farmers as well as business that support the local food initiative.

Sponsors for the event include: Taste the Local Difference, The Local Food Alliance sponsored by Grain Train Natural Foods Market, Emmet County Recycling, and Kilwin’s Chocolate Kitchen. Local farmers will also be in attendance and the evenings hors d’oeuvres will also have several local features.

Attend this event for networking opportunities, along with hors d’oeuvres created with local foods, cash-bar refreshments and door prizes. Cost is just $7 for Members or $12 for Not-yet-members. No Advance Registration is required.

Business After Hours is a well-attended "end-of-the-work-day" networking event designed to help participants make new business contacts, develop potential new customers, and build exposure for their businesses.  Inexpensive and informal, after hours are ideal for meeting fellow professionals and establishing long-lasting business relationships.

To help build business relationships, you need to be in the right places to meet members of the business community. The Petoskey Regional Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours is the right place to be each month. An average of 125 chamber members attend each after hours event for networking opportunities. For more information please call Nikki Devitt at 347-4150.

2nd Annual Ghost Supper community meal
Oct 18 @ 2:00 pm – 12:00 am

On Sunday, October 18, 2015, the Mackinaw Area Historical Society will host its second Annual Ghost Supper in Heritage Village, 2 miles west of Mackinaw City off Central Avenue.

 The Ghost Supper, or Spirit Feast, is a celebration of Native American culture that is observed in the fall as a traditional time of remembering and honoring deceased loved ones and relatives through the offering of food and tobacco (semaa) at a community meal. The tobacco is offered to the spirit fire, in honoring one’s ancestors at this gathering. The food is prepared to feed the ancestor’s at the spirit fire. The ghost feast shares elements of Halloween, All Souls Day and Mexico’s Day of the Dead. “This custom has been practiced for as long as the AnishInaabe (Odawa, Ojibwa and Potawatomi) have lived in Michigan,” said Gennie Morgan, a Native Elder specializing on Ojibwa traditions, the medicine wheel and drumming.

 In many occasions when Ghost Feasts are held, the tradition will begin when tribal members use colorful crepe paper to make wreathes which are placed on their ancestor’s burial sites as an invitation to the ghost suppers. With fall generally being a rainy season, the crepe paper wreathes get wet and the color drains out of them – a sign that the spirits of the ancestors have accepted the invitation to the supper.

The general public is invited to share in this ceremony. Bring a favorite dish of an ancestor to share plus your own table setting. Cider and water will be provided. The ceremony, which will begin at 2:00 in the afternoon at the Heritage Village pavilion, will include drumming and singing and enjoying a community meal around the sacred fire. This is an outside event so participants should dress warmly. Heritage Village is located on West Central Avenue about 1.5 miles west of downtown Mackinaw City.

Triple Fright Night at Headlands, McGulpin Point and Heritage Village
Oct 24 @ 9:00 am – 11:00 pm
Triple Fright Night at Headlands, McGulpin Point and Heritage Village @ Northern Emmet County parks


WHAT: Experience the 7th Annual Headlands Challenge & Triple Fright Night, with free events planned at the International Dark Sky Park at the Headlands, McGulpin Point Lighthouse and Mackinaw’s Heritage Village!

WHEN: Saturday, October 24, 2015

WHERE: Mackinaw City parks: the Headlands International Dark Sky Park, McGulpin Point Lighthouse and Heritage Village

McGulpin Point Lighthouse: 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. (open all day)
Heritage Village: 6 to 8 p.m.
Headlands Challenge walk: 8 to 10 p.m.


MACKINAW CITY — Three Northern Emmet County parks will offer their annual Triple Fright Night festivities, free for families and visitors, just before Halloween on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2015! The events are scheduled around the 7th Annual Headlands Challenge event, when Emmet County dares visitors to walk the 1-mile dimly-lighted path from the Headlands entrance to the Dark Sky Viewing Area at the Lake Michigan shoreline.

The Headlands Challenge takes place from 8 to 10 p.m., with a theme this year of “Superstitions.” Refreshments, storytelling and community-building are the event highlights. Experience the dark and stay for the show — the stars above! Telescopes will be provided. This event takes place under October’s nearly full moon (Oct. 27).

Please note: Transportation WILL NOT be provided back out of the park after participants have walked in. This will be a roughly 2-mile walking event into and out of the park, to the parking area that will be established at Heritage Village. Most of the route is paved; some is gravel surface. Safety concerns prevent the park from allowing vehicle traffic between 7:30 and 11 p.m. and vehicles will not be allowed to enter or leave the park during that time.


More Fright-Night fun!

In addition to the events at the Headlands, participants are invited to visit the “haunted” McGulpin Point Lighthouse which is just a short distance from the Dark Sky Park, and Heritage Village, across the street from the Headlands, for trick-or-treating.

McGulpin Point Lighthouse will be decorated for Halloween with lots of scares and surprises for all members of the family. The lighthouse will be open 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Triple Fright Night Oct. 24.

Additional fall hours at McGulpin are 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Oct. 30-31.

The lighthouse is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily now through Nov. 1 (admission is by donation).

Heritage Village hours on Triple Fright Night will be 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 24. Costumed docents will greet trick-or-treaters who will walk from building to building in this historic park, which covers the period from 1880-1917. Refreshments will be served at Heritage Village. Be sure to wear your costumes to join in the festive spirit of this night in Northern Emmet County!


Transportation to venues provided

Trolley service among the three adjacent properties will be provided at no charge, beginning at 6 p.m. at Heritage Village, where most parking will be available. (The last run will be announced at the properties on the night of the event; approx. 11 p.m.) The three park properties are located about 2 miles west of downtown Mackinaw City.

Again, please note that the trolley will not service the Dark Sky Viewing area at the Headlands. The Headlands Challenge event is intended to be a walking event and vehicle traffic through the park will not be allowed.

For more details about Triple Fright Night, call (231) 348-1704 or email

Additional information about the International Dark Sky Park at the Headlands and programming can be found online at




7th Annual Headlands Challenge
Oct 24 @ 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm
7th Annual Headlands Challenge @ Headlands International Dark Sky Park


Headlands Challenge dares you to walk a mile through the dark at Michigan’s Dark Sky Park on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2015!


Program note: Vehicle transportation through the park will not be allowed during this event, and no transportation to and from the ending spot will be provided, so plan to walk one mile in and one mile out during this event.

MACKINAW CITY – Have you ever heard that a four leaf clover brings good luck, or that breaking a mirror means trouble for the next seven years? Did you know that saying “God bless you” when someone sneezes was a 7th century way to protect again bubonic plague, and that wishing on stars may make dreams come true? If so, then we suspect that Halloween is your favorite time of year, and if you’re only mildly afraid of the dark, then we have just the event for you!

The 7th annual Headlands Challenge at the Headlands International Dark Sky Park in Mackinaw City on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2015, will challenge your superstitions — and your bravery.

This annual, family-friendly event will take place Saturday evening, Oct. 24, from 8 to 10 p.m. under waxing gibbous moon, sending mysterious light into the woods and setting imaginations on fire along a one-mile, candlelit walk to the trail’s end where participants will find seasonal storytelling and refreshments. Shoreline dark sky viewing will also be open to the public.

During the annual Headlands Challenge, guests park at the entrance and walk the one-mile drive to the shoreline viewing; this year, the path will divert toward the Guest House and will include paved and gravel surfaces. The path is lit with luminaries; light refreshments are served; and staff provides games and storytelling, as well as guided tours of the night sky.

“We time our Headlands Challenge each year to coincide with the mood that sets in just prior to the Fall Cross Quarter Day,” said Headlands Program Director Mary Stewart Adams. “Each season we reach a halfway point, and traditions throughout the world hold that these seasonal ‘turning points’ are times in the yearly cycle when mischief is let loose just prior to dedication to what is sacred.

“Halloween, more traditionally referred to as All Hallow’d Eve, falls on the eve of the Fall cross-quarter day known as All Saints Day. All Saints Day marks the beginning of the month-long observances in many of the world’s traditions during which ceremonies and celebrations are held honoring loved ones who have died, so just before we slip into that season, it’s no wonder that there are traditions of mischievousness that include pranks and ghosts and superstitions.”

This year during the Headlands Challenge, we will take superstition as our theme, and we invite you to share your favorites, either in costume or just for fun. Superstition is defined as an “excessively credulous belief in and reverence for supernatural causation.”

With 7 being a universally lucky number, you can celebrate all those superstitions in the safety of our own dark, starry woods during this 7th annual event, too.


The Headlands is a 600-acre park on the Straits of Mackinac, two miles west of downtown Mackinaw City, at 15675 Headlands Road (please note this is a new address as of January 2014). The park is free and open to the public every day. While no camping is allowed, visitors are welcome to stay overnight to observe the dark sky overhead. The Headlands became the 6th International Dark Sky Park in the U.S. and the 9th in the world in May 2011, and each month free programs are held for the public. For more information, visit, email, or phone (231) 348-1704. The county sends regular email blasts as well with information about night-sky observation opportunities and celestial events; to register, use the contact information above.

Veterans Day Events
Nov 11 all-day

Veterans Day in Emmet County: Notices of events on Wednesday, Nov. 11

Services: Several events in Emmet County are planned to recognize Veterans Day on Wednesday, Nov. 11. “At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, we will remember and honor our veterans with a walk into Pennsylvania Park. 5th grade classes from around the area will help carry the flag and read and sing and honor our veterans,” according to the Angel Ambassadors.

Beginning at 10:30 a.m., students and staff from Central Elementary School and other participants will walk from the school to Pennsylvania Park downtown Petoskey, where a veterans’ honor ceremony will take place.

Breakfast for Veterans: Veterans and their families are invited to a free breakfast at the North Central Michigan College cafeteria on Wednesday, November 11, from 8 a.m. until 10 a.m.  The college’s Student Veterans Association and Chase Bank are sponsoring the event to show appreciation to our local veterans and their families. No reservations are necessary.

Veterans Day Pow Wow: The LTBB Waaniigaanzijik Youth Council will host a Veteran’s Day Pow Wow on Wednesday, Nov. 1, at the Petoskey Middle School cafeteria and gym. A potluck feast begins at 6:15 p.m. and the Grand Entry is at 7 p.m. All drums and dancers are invited to participate. For more information call (715) 558-3891.

Discounts: Free lunch of dinner at Applebee’s and Bob Evans all day on Veterans Day; 10 percent discount at Lowe’s

Read Emmet County EMS Director Larry Hansen’s tribute to Veterans on the EMS home page.

Program: The Arts Inspired by the Cosmos, Under the Cover of the Leonid Meteor Shower
Nov 14 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Complete Headlands program schedule and park details:



November at the Headlands: ‘The Arts Inspired by the Cosmos, Under the Cover of the Leonid Meteor Shower’

Program on Nov. 14, 2015, free and open to the public for stargazing at Michigan’s Dark Sky Park!

MACKINAW CITY — Humanity’s striving to understand its place in the stars has led to the highest achievements in literature, architecture, science, and the arts. At Headlands the Headlands International Dark Sky Park in Mackinaw City, there is no better time to take a journey through the wonder and inspiration of it all than during the peak of the Leonid Meteor Shower.

Headlands staff has planned a program around the meteor shower, “The Arts Inspired by the Cosmos, Under the Cover of the Leonid Meteor Shower.” It takes place from 6 to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 14, at the Guest House at the Headlands, 15675 Headlands Road, Mackinaw City. Reservations are not required; the event is free and open to the public, and takes place rain or shine.

“We will start the evening by taking a tour through the arts of the ages with a presentation inside the Guest House, and then make our way out into the deep dark night to find the stars that inspired it all,” said Mary Stewart Adams, Dark Sky Park Program Director.

Adams noted that since the skies get dark relatively early in November, with cooler temperatures settling in, “the views can be quite spectacular. “Also in this season, cultures throughout the world observe celebrations in honor of loved ones who have died, so there’s this really fine quality of creative achievement tied to religious and spiritual ceremony and deep remembrance of things we love that is stirred up in the mood of this season. These are the things we hope to experience through this program.”

The Moon will be a waxing crescent in the evening sky, while the constellation Andromeda comes to the highest place overhead, and Orion the mighty hunter rises up in the East. Guests can expect to hear the poetry and tales connected with these constellations, as well as see images from ancient to contemporary art that have been inspired by all the wonders found overhead, Adams said.

There will be light refreshment and interactive, creative activity, as well as a guided tour of the night sky.

“And as a bonus, the Leonid Meteor Shower will be active, streaming through Earth’s atmosphere from the trail of stuff left in the wake of the Comet Temple-Tuttle. Who were those guys, and what were the art and music and science of their day?” said Adams. “These comets are bright and bluish, they are known for leaving nice trains. This shower is the one that led to ‘meteor science’ because of the thousands of meteors that fell to Earth during this shower in the 1833. This is a highly variable shower, and we are meeting just ahead of the peek, so we can’t expect that kind of activity, but the anticipation and longing for such experiences is really what drives a lot of our cultural striving, so it’s a wonderful set up.”

Program note: Please note that the date of Nov. 17 for this program previously announced in the 2015 Dark Sky Park program schedule is incorrect; the correct date is Nov. 14.



Petoskey holiday parade downtown
Nov 28 @ 10:00 am


Holiday spirit will be in the air with the 2015 Stafford’s Downtown Petoskey Holiday Parade, Saturday, Nov. 28, 2015 at 10 a.m. The parade will wind through Downtown streets and end at the Perry Hotel, where children will have those all-important conversations with Santa.

Downtown Petoskey is proud to announce this year’s parade will be an excellent way to support local families in need! As part of the Toys for Tots program, the U.S. Marines will collect new, unwrapped toys for the many nothern Michigan families who will be unable to afford gifts during the holiday season.  On behalf of the Harvest Food & Supply Drive for the Women’s Resource Center Safe Home, Grain Train will be collecting items of need.

In addition, there will be performances by the Petoskey High School Marching Band, floats, and walking ensembles representing many businesses and nonprofits in the community, and much more.

The parade is always the Saturday after Thanksgiving

Downtown Petoskey Holiday Open House
Dec 4 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Held the first Friday in December, Holiday Open House begins with an appearance by Santa Claus, who flies in to town to light the giant Christmas tree in Pennsylvania Park. Merchants open their doors to offer warm holiday greetings. The streets are filled with merry entertainment by carolers and the Petoskey High School Steel Drum Band. And don’t forget to visit the bean pots and enjoy a cup of soup made by the Petoskey Snowmobile Club. Come downtown and enjoy the smiling faces and Christmas fun with your family with this evening that is a holiday tradition on the first Friday in December every year.
Harbor Springs Annual Merchants Open House
Dec 5 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
You’ll feel as if you’ve stepped into a Norman Rockwell painting when visiting this lovely resort town during the holidays! The most anticipated event of the year is the Annual Downtown Merchant Holiday Open House.  Enjoy a fun-filled day of shopping and an unforgettable evening of special music including the Petoskey Steel Drum Band, hot and cold refreshments, and yummy holiday treats and hors d’oeuvres.  Main Street will be closed to allow the community to stroll in between stores and enjoy a relaxing evening of tradition.
Facilitative Leadership Workshop
Jan 27 @ 9:30 am – Jan 29 @ 3:00 pm

Facilitative Leadership

From the Michigan State University Extension Office: If you haven’t taken Facilitative Leadership yet, here is your opportunity! It is one of the most highly acclaimed programs we teach! This three-day class focuses on creating an inclusive culture of collaborative learning in teams, communities and organizations. It is for both new and experienced leaders, managers, facilitators and graduate students who would like to develop or improve their facilitative leadership skills.

Click here for more information:

Contact: Julia Darnton, Emily Proctor

‘The Mighty Mac: An Icon in Michigan’ program set for April 27
Apr 27 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

‘The Mighty Mac: An Icon in Michigan’ next Essence of Emmet program on April 27, 2016

Free public event takes place Wednesday, April 27, from 6 to 8 the Fairgrounds in Petoskey
The story of one of Michigan’s most recognized and beloved landmarks, the Mackinac Bridge, will be the topic of the Essence of Emmet historical collaborative’s Spring 2016 program.

The program will take place from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, April 27, at the Community Building at the Emmet County Fairgrounds, 1129 Charlevoix Ave (U.S. 31), Petoskey (use the Eppler Road entrance). It is free and open to the public; reservations are not required and refreshments will be served during an intermission.

On this evening, several speakers will offer insights and background on the Mighty Mac, which connects Michigan’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas. The program will begin with Mackinac Bridge Authority Executive Secretary Bob Sweeney and his presentation on how the bridge was built, including photos and anecdotes about this engineering marvel.

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Bob Sweeney, Executive Secretary of the Mackinac Bridge Authority

The bridge opened in 1957 and has served as a driver of economic development and tourism in Northern Michigan for the last nearly 60 years. The bridge has a foundation in three counties: Emmet, Cheboygan and Mackinac in the UP. As Executive Secretary of the MBA since August 2002, Sweeney oversees all operations of the bridge, its maintenance and staff.

During an intermission, guests can enjoy refreshments and watch a video of Emmet County staff climbing the south tower of the bridge with Sweeney.

After intermission, a seldom-told but intriguing angle on the bridge’s history will be presented. Attorney Patrick McGow, with the Miller Canfield legal firm in Detroit, will share how sharp lawyering skills allowed for the bridge’s financing to go through at the last minute. Because no suspension bridge of this length had ever been built anywhere in the world, coupled with challenging construction conditions, negotiating the financing of the bonds came down to the wire and nearly failed.

McGow is a bond attorney, advising cities, counties, townships, villages and authorities on a broad range of infrastructure financing and related legal matters.

Patrick McGow, atop the Mackinac Bridge’s south tower.

At the end of the program, the public may have the opportunity to hear from several people who worked on the bridge’s construction, during a Q & A session.


The Essence of Emmet group works to promote the rich history of Northwest Michigan. Members of the Essence of Emmet include Emmet County, the Emmet County Historical Commission, Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association, Harbor Springs Area Historical Society, Headlands International Dark Sky Park, Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, Little Traverse Historical Society, Mackinac State Historic Parks, Mackinaw Area Historical Society and Pellston Historical Society. Information can be found online at about the group and its projects.

The Essence group has published three of four parts of an historical magazine series exploring the history of Emmet County and its people. The construction of the bridge is featured prominently in Part 3, which covers the timeframe of 1918 through 1960.

To receive complimentary copies of the first three of four installments of the Essence of Emmet history magazine, contact Beth Anne Eckerle at (231) 348-1704 or email Part 4 will be published in January 2017.

For more information about the group or the April 27 program, contact Eckerle. The second program of the year will take place in the Fall, on Sept. 28, 2016, also at the Fairgrounds.

Students and senior groups interested in our history are encouraged to attend the historical programs.

Put Your Pills in the POD! Emmet County Drug Collection Event on July 23rd
Jul 23 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm

To help citizens properly dispose of unwanted or expired medicines, there is an upcoming POD (Prescription and Over-the-Counter Drug Drop-Off) collection event in Harbor Springs. This collection event will take place at the Emmet County Drop-Off Center, 7363 Pleasantview Road, on Saturday, July 23, from 9 a.m. to 12:00 Noon..

This is an environmentally safe, convenient, and free way to dispose of unwanted and expired pills. Area residents can bring unused or expired prescriptions and over-the-counter medications in the original containers including pills, liquids, ointments, lotions, and even pet medications. We request that residents keep the medicines in the original container for easy identification of the medicine but erase or black out all personal information from the prescription bottles.

“Improper disposal of unwanted and expired medicine can pose a significant danger to our Northern Michigan waters, community, and families,” said Jennifer McKay, policy specialist, Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council. “By using the POD Program and properly disposing of unwanted pharmaceuticals and drugs, residents will help us keep our rivers and drinking water clean and our communities and families safe.”

Traditional methods for disposing of unused medicines – flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash – pose potential safety and health hazards and should be avoided. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are increasing, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.

Residents may also dispose of medicines throughout the year at permanent POD Drop-off Boxes, located at law enforcement agencies throughout Northern Michigan.  For more information, including drop-off locations,<>.

The service is made possible through cooperation of the following entities: Emmet County Household Chemical Drop-off Program, Emmet County Sheriff’s Office, HARBOR, Inc., Harbor Springs Police Department, the Health Department of Northwest Michigan Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, McLaren Northern Michigan, Petoskey Department of Public Safety, and Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council.

Grand Opening of Michigan’s first “Great Lake to Great Lake Trail” scheduled for Sept. 16 in Pellston
Sep 16 @ 12:00 pm

A new multi-purpose trail has been completed from Petoskey to Mackinaw City, and planners, collaborators and builders will celebrate on Friday, Sept. 16 in Pellston, which marks the half-way point of the trail.

At Noon, Pellston Village Park will be the scene of a ribbon cutting for the trail, some presentations by state and local officials, and a picnic lunch courtesy of the Village of Pellston. All are invited to attend, and encouraged to ride their bikes from points north and south to this celebration of the new trail.

The North Western State Trail (NWST) runs along the former Grand Rapids and Indiana line of the Pennsylvania Railroad (once known as “The Fishing Line”) that opened in 1882 and continued in some areas until 1992. The NWST is 32 miles in length and connects Petoskey and Mackinaw City. A 7.5-mile paved section of the trail, from Petoskey to Alanson, was completed in 2013. The 23-mile Alanson to Mackinaw City segment was improved over the last year with two new bridges and a 10-foot-wide packed crushed limestone surface. The trail is open to all non-motorized uses year-round and to snowmobiles from December 1 to March 31.

The Top of Michigan Trails Council helped coordinate the various NWST projects with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Michigan Department of Transportation, Emmet County and the Emmet County Road Commission. Primary funding for the projects has come from the Federal Transportation Alternatives Program, Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund, Recreation Improvement Fund, Recreation Trails Program and Emmet County.

Locally, the completion of the NWST creates connections to every incorporated community within Emmet County. But an even more exciting possibility provided by the trail was indicated recently by Emily Meyerson, MDNR Northern Michigan Trails Coordinator, when she said, “You can now go from Lake Michigan to Lake Huron–140 miles–on interconnected multi-use trails. This new trail allows a user to travel from Charlevoix to Petoskey, on to Mackinaw City, to Cheboygan and then to Alpena.”

For more information about the Grand Opening of the NWST, or about any of the trails in TOMTC’s network throughout Northern Michigan, call Jeff Winegard at (231) 348-8280.

bikes in the side view 2 web

Bikes are pictured in the side view mirror, safely off the road enjoying the North Western State Trail near Alanson along U.S. 31.



‘BOMBED BUT NOT FORGOTTEN’ Free fall Essence history program; annual awards presented
Sep 28 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

The Essence of Emmet historical collaborative will host its second program of the year on a topic of local intrigue: the intentional bombing of Waugoshance Point lighthouse during World War II.

The program will take place on Wednesday, Sept. 28, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Community Building at the Fairgrounds, 1129 Charlevoix Ave. (U.S. 31) in Petoskey. The program is free and open to the public. Also at this event, the Essence group’s annual history awards will be bestowed upon those individuals and organizations who work hard to preserve and protect this region’s one-of-a-kind history. Categories include special programs, lifetime achievement, restoration/preservation projects and distinguished professional and volunteer.

Presenting the program, “Bombed but not forgotten” about Waugoshance will be Terry Pepper, of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association in Mackinaw City.

“Serving the treacherous Straits of Mackinac from 1851 to 1913, the Waugoshance Lighthouse may be the most unique and historically significant lighthouse on all the lakes. But that is only the opening chapter to its surprising story,” said Terry.

During the program he will offer information and photos about the World War II era drone-bombing of Waugoshance by the U.S. military in preparation for dropping bombs on Japan. He will also talk about the status of the lighthouse today and those who have worked to keep it standing. Waugoshance is located off the tip of Wilderness State Park, in the waters off northern Emmet County.


Born in the United Kingdom, Pepper immigrated to Canada in 1964. Pepper first became interested in Great Lakes lighthouses while on a vacation in Michigan in 1989. Frustrated in his attempts to find accurate historical information on the lights he visited and photographed, he began spending every spare minute in libraries, museums and archives, digging up information, which he began sharing on his website “Seeing the Light” in 1995.

Pepper was asked to serve as board member of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association in 2002 and was subsequently hired as the Association’s first Executive Director in 2006, in which capacity he is actively involved in lighthouse restoration, education and advocacy.

Recognized as one of the foremost authorities on Great Lakes lighthouse history, Pepper’s writing and photography have been published in numerous books, magazines and maritime history periodicals. He speaks on lighthouse history and preservation throughout the Great Lakes, and is well known for his spirited and humorous interpretation of the stories of the men and women who served to protect mariners as they navigated their way around the treacherous lakes.
The awards portion of the evening will take place prior to Pepper’s presentation. The awards will be given by members of the Essence collaborative. Refreshments will also be served.

“Our fall program is a special one because we are able to recognize people who go above-and-beyond to keep our history alive in Emmet County. We have enjoyed great success with the Essence of Emmet group, and it’s a pleasure to recognize those around us doing great work,” said Beth Anne Eckerle, Essence member and Emmet County Communications and Web Development Director.

About the Essence of Emmet

The Essence of Emmet group works to promote this region’s rich history. Members of the Essence of Emmet include the Emmet County Historical Commission, Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association, Harbor Springs Area Historical Society, Headlands International Dark Sky Park, Inland Water Route Historical Society, Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, Little Traverse Historical Society, Mackinac State Historic Parks, Mackinaw Area Historical Society and Pellston Historical Society. Information can be found online at about the group and its projects.

To receive a complimentary copy of the third of four installments of the Essence of Emmet history magazine, produced by group members, contact Beth Anne Eckerle at (231) 348-1704 or email You can also contact her with questions about the group or the program.

Students and senior groups interested in our history are encouraged to attend the historical programs.

Photos courtesy of Terry Pepper

Trick-or-Treat at Camp Petosega
Oct 15 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Trick or Treating through the campground
2016: Saturday, Oct. 15
Hours: 5 to 7 p.m.
Vehicle traffic through the campground will not be permitted from 5 to 7 p.m.
(note: water in the campground will be shut off on Sunday, Oct. 16, for the 2016 season)


Campers and the public are invited to dress up in your favorite costume and trick-or-treat around the campground on this evening! Hot dogs will be provided by Emmet County Parks and Recreation too this year!


Triple Fright Night in Northern Emmet County!
Oct 29 @ 6:00 pm

Each year around Halloween, Emmet County Parks and Recreation teams up with Mackinaw City’s Heritage Village for a night of triple frights!

Family-fun can be found at the Headlands International Dark Sky Park, McGulpin Point Lighthouse and Heritage Village! Details in the flyer below. Questions: call (231) 348-1704 or email



Holiday Open House at McGulpin Point Lighthouse
Dec 3 @ 10:00 am – Dec 4 @ 6:00 pm

10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 3 and Sunday, Dec. 4, 2016

As part of the annual “Christmas in Mackinaw” celebrations the first weekend of December throughout Mackinaw City, McGulpin Point will re-open for special hours. The lighthouse will be open and decorated for the holidays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, Dec. 3-4, 2016. Santa will be on-site from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 3. Hay wagon rides will also be available around the property. McGulpin Point is located at 500 Headlands Road, Mackinaw City. All events are free and open to the public. If you have questions, please call (231) 348-1704.

Plan Your New Year with the Stars at the Headlands Dark Sky Park on Jan. 7
Jan 7 @ 4:30 pm – 6:00 pm
Plan Your New Year with the Stars at the Headlands Dark Sky Park on Jan. 7

DETAILS: Meet at the Guest House, 15675 Headlands Park Dr., Mackinaw City; program 4:30 to 6 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 7, 2017

In ages gone by, community life was centered around the observance of celestial phenomena. At the Headlands International Dark Sky Park, a Jan. 7, 2017 program will , step into the wisdom of this tradition with the first program of the New Year, during which we will highlight all the terrific phenomena coming toward us in 2017.  “The program is designed to support all of us in our effort to find harmony in the greater rhythm of things,” said Mary Stewart Adams. Adams will provide specific dates and times for the celestial highlights of the year, with viewing tips and the cultural history of the phenomena. These highlights include: the predicted close approach of comet 45P/HMP; the union of Venus and Mars in the arms of the Moon; Jupiter, Spica, and the Vernal Full Moon; and not to be missed, the Great American Total Solar Eclipse of 2017.  Complete program and park details: 

Emmet County, Michigan
200 Division Street, Petoskey MI 49770
(231) 348-1702 | Contact Us