Michigan State Parks – A Photo Tour!

Great post offering an quick highlight or two on Many of Michigan’s state parks

hebspeaks

Editor’s note: I have visited 63 of the 107 state parks in Michigan over the course of my lifetime. I’m about to take you on a little “photo tour!” Please note I am only write-ups about parks I’ve visited and photographed. This might be part of a series of blogs about Michigan State Parks, in honor of the 100th birthday of the parks system. Pictures aren’t always worth a thousand words, but these will make their best efforts to tell the story!

Bewabic State Park (Crystal Falls, MI)

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Bewabic State Park is located in the Southwest portion of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. In addition to bringing your own tent or camper, you can also stay the night in a tipi! My only complaint was that the door was too low. Bewabic is located on Fortune Lake. We stayed in the tipi with our niece on an overnight trip, and Mike ALMOST…

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Ora Labora’s Growing Pains

Ora Labora – A Lost Colony in Michigan’s North – Part III

Part III of the Ora Labora story takes place in 1864. The costly building to accommodate the  colonies 140 residents was costly and the community needs cash to grow. It was time for drastic measures. News of the raging war in the south was looking like the demand for more soldiers was looming. Leaders of the colony knew it would be months or weeks before conscription would take their finest young men. Read more…

The Great Lakes Oasis Threatened

The Great Lakes Region hosts the largest supply of fresh water on the planet. The entire region enjoys mild seasons due to the mitigation by the lakes of extreme weather. Indeed the entire area surrounding the Great Lakes area may be considered an oasis as the extreme effects of global warming start to take hold. 

Yet there are threats to this resource. Foreign companies are pumping millions of gallons of fresh clean water everyday from the Aquifers that are fed and supported by the Great Lakes. They don’t pay for the resource and profit handsomely.  Read about the reaction Michigan citizens are having against the Michigan DEQ and Nestle. 


 

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Sweet Sebewaing

Sebewaing Michigan is a town of approximately 1,800 people situated on the shore of Saginaw Bay. Historically this settlement has been in existence for 100’s of years before white settlers as it was a well known fishing and hunting area for the Anishinaabeg group of Indigenous Peoples in North America. 

Today it’s one of the sweetest towns Michigan’s Thumb. Known as the Sugar Beet Capital, due to the Michigan Sugar mill located within the village and the yearly Michigan Sugar Festival. The Sebewaing area, the Thumb, and the state of Michigan overall are major beet sugar growers and producers. 

The town also was home to Sebewaing Brewing Company which operated until 1966. The cans, beer cases and other memorabilia are known for their collectability. 


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Michigan’s Thumb is Black Bean Headquarters

Black Beans are medium to small, oval shaped beans with a shiny black coat or skin, a small white eye or spot (called a “keel,”) a creamy white interior, and a pleasant mushroom-like flavor which some cooks have described as “earthy” or “meaty.”

According to the Michigan Bean Commission, Michigan is internationally known as an excellent supplier of high quality dry beans. The climate, with rich, well drained, loamy soil, moderate daytime temperatures, and cool evenings are suited for bean production. Michigan is the top state in production of Black Beans, Cranberry Beans, and Small Red Beans.

Mexico is Michigan’s largest export market, largely made up of but not limited to high quality, Michigan black beans. In Michigan’s Upper Thumb the town of Kinde was once known has the bean capital of Michigan.


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1000’s of Volkswagen’s at Pontiac Silverdome

It looked like the 1980’s again when the northern Detroit stadium was the the home of the Detroit Lions and the site of  Super Bowl XVI.  The urban ruin of the Pontiac Silverdome is now playing host to 1000’s of Volkswagens parked in the open. VW purchased back the  vehicles as part of the $15 Billion settlement the company made as a result of IMG_0738their diesel emissions scandal. The Silverdome is only a few miles away from VW’s North American headquarters in Auburn Hills, Michigan.

IMG_0739The city of Pontiac is suing the owners of the property claiming they don’t have a use permit to store the vehicles. The 82,000 seat Pontiac Silverdome sits abandoned and open to the elements. It’s been a favorite photo shoot site for urban ruins artists and the set of a movie.

Trump Stops Plan to Keep Asian Carp Out of Great Lakes

carpU.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ was scheduled to release draft results of a study two years in the making that many hoped would provide a workable plan to combat the invasive species’ advance through Illinois rivers toward Lake Michigan. But a spokesman for the government agency said the release was “deferred” at the ninth hour.

Its expected that the plan would call for improvements would be made on the lock and dam is on the Illinois Des Plaines River, part of a waterway network that links the carp-infested Illinois River with Lake Michigan.

The imported big head asian carp — which are filter feeders that consume huge amounts of biomass and grow to near 100 pounds while outcompeting native species — could wreak havoc on the Great Lakes ecosystem and its multi-billion-dollar sport-fishing industry.

Experts predict the carp would devastate the Great Lakes ecosystem through out competing native species as they have in several other locations.

Trump to Great Lakes Region “You’re Expendable”

downloadA crushing blow came in yesterday to the Great Lakes region. In the 2018 budget, the Trump administration slashed the EPA’s funding from its paltry $300m to $10m. This effectively guts the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. The GLRI funds state and local projects that combat invasive species, restore wildlife habitats and clean up watersheds polluted by a Rust Belt economic legacy across the eight-state Great Lakes region. It has traditionally enjoyed strong bipartisan support in Congress.

Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio and Pennsylvania — Great Lakes states that backed Trump in the election last year — have all received funding under GLRI.

“These cuts will essentially stop restoration efforts in their tracks in states like Michigan, Wisconsin and Ohio,” said.U.S. House Great Lakes Task Force Chair Rep. Bill Huizenga, R-Zeeland.

 

 

Ora Labora Colony

Ora Labora is an educational and research site dedicated to the recognition of the German Colony. Our goal is to provide verifiable and primary source information on the formation, operation and demise of the colony. In addition to its educational purpose we are striving to gain the required funding and recognition from the State of Michigan to provide a historical marker near the site of Ora Labora on Wild Fowl Bay in Huron County, Michigan.