Pat Leavy's Blog


                Sitting on a bench in East Park, between Petoskey and Bay Harbor, one takes advantage of a very special view: Bay Harbor to the West, Petoskey to the East, and directly across the bay to the North, rests Harbor Springs.


                The vista is spectacular and unobstructed aside from one’s possible disbelieving eyes. There’s never a moment when a visitor to this park isn’t snapping a picture, biking through on the Charlevoix to Mackinaw Wheelway, or simply resting and relaxing as the soft Lake Michigan westerlies caress the grasses rimming the bluff.


                Today, a sailboat tacks over the teal blue bay in search of nothing other than the serenity of the momentary breeze, while white puffs of clouds carouse with each other until…
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                On the leeward side of Walloon Lake’s North Arm along Kilarney Shores Road, one can gaze across toward the treed hillsides and Jones Landing. Aside from an occasional easterly storm, these shores are usually quiet.


                Pontoon boats and assorted runabouts float at the ready for an evening cruise or weekend ride, and one of those enchanting boat rides is around the point, south, where you’ll find access to Walloon Village and all the amenities it offers. You’ll also be able to navigate greater sections of the lake, west and further north.  For those who prefer an auto tour, your only a few miles from Petoskey and Walloon Village if you cut over from Resort Pike Road on Williams Road to US-131.


                An added bonus to the…
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                As you come down the hill on M-119 and past City Hall, park along the street among the stately homes and stroll into town. But don’t be surprised by what you find. There have been changes!

                The Lyric Theater looms stoically as you enter town. Open last year on July 27th, it’s gearing up to celebrate its first anniversary this summer. And while the façade speaks to a quiet renaissance, the inside is anything but stoic.

                “People really enjoy our theater experience,” says Scott Langton, Executive Director. “We have over 52 beverage selections, including new wines and beer, we have organic popcorn and use ‘real’ butter, but best of all we have wonderful community volunteers.”

                Review the

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                For a soft spring morning on Burt Lake, one often finds time, no, makes time to enjoy the silence of the water while paddling a kayak, and there’s no place better than Maple Bay. Only a few hundred yards from the fine trimmed lawns and blossoming gardens, an Audubon delight awaits.

                Today it was a pair of mergansers swimming around a lone mallard drake. Further down among the reeds, nesting swans sat cautiously as an eagle glided overhead. A glance down from the kayak into the crystal-clear waters found a painted turtle, hovering below, and looking up as if to say, “Good Morning!” We watched each other as blue jays and flickers cajoled above the treetops.

                The breezes swished by painting whitecaps on

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As you drive into Bay Harbor from U.S. 31, you’ll quickly notice the beautiful view of Lake Michigan and the hotels that crease the skyline, but now there’s an added vision: The Great Lakes Center for the Arts. The shell is fast becoming a building with a future as bright and audacious as the performers it will attract.

 

During the construction, have some fun with the view. Remember the days in the sandbox? Remember the cranes, the front loaders, dump trucks, and bulldozers? That’s the romance of watching the scene.

 

“It’s exciting to watch the progress out the window,” notes Beth Anne Eckerle, Marketing Director for the Center.

 

It’s also fun. Crews are rigging and welding while others move mountains of earth and still more folks

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Sitting on a Village bench by the shore of Walloon Lake, one looks over the soft ripples of the teal waters. Robins prance and grackles squawk among the rocks and rooftops rimming the Village Green.

Overhead, a silken white moon appears as a distant cloud fading into the southern sky, while the sun rises behind, foreshadowing a glorious day of warmth and sunshine for those currently enjoying their morning coffee on a distant shore.

 A true harbinger of spring rests along the banks of adjacent properties. Docks are at the ready. Some in the water await bows and sterns with their cleats and ropes, and others sit at the shore, longing. The Melrose Township boat launch is bedecked with its dock and looks encouraging as it shelters resting minnows

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“Spring Art”

While the ice meanders around Little Traverse Bay and settles in the boat harbor, finches return to feeders, and outdoor furniture reappears in some yards, spring doesn’t officially begin in the area until the Crooked Tree Youth Arts Festival kicks off. Such was the case this past weekend. 

Each spring every school in our Char-Em District sends student art work and literary ventures to the Crooked Tree Arts Center for a juried disposition with accompanying awards. The culinary art departments at the various high schools also provide their wares for hungry participants and guests as the April entourage grows culminating in an awards ceremony on May 6th where students proudly read their winning literary entries. There is also a musical

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