What to do?...

Here's just a few ideas....wineries, the Little River Casino in Manistee, the Platte Fish Hatchery. Canoe the Platte or Betsie River. Fish them. Lake Michigan, too. There are fishing charters available in Arcadia or Frankfort. Horseback ride. Hike in the park or walk through the Michgan Legacy Art park at Crystal Mountain. Check out the Cherry Hut in Beulah, or catch a drive-in movie. Eat dinner in Onekema or shop at a roadside stand. Marvel at the Victorian Lumber Baron homes in Manistee. Surf the Mystery Hill. Hang glide!

More? Visit Glen Arbor,Empire, and Leelanau County! Click on the Glen Arbor fun page or go to www.glenarborcottage.com.

For our guests that golf, here's a list of courses within 30 minutes drive of the Arcadia cottages, including the renowned Arcadia Bluffs, just three miles south. (Don't golf? Try dinner in the clubhouse!)

The Park

Sleeping Bears National Lake Shore - natural beauty and history combined.

The colossal park perpetually preserves a large geographic area encompassing about 35 miles of the Lake Michigan coastline. It has many unique points-of-interest, including the two large islands, North and South Manitou . They are accessible by ferry boat departing from the Leland for day trips or overnight camping. You can also travel to the islands by private water craft. (There is a public boat launch in downtown Glen Arbor.) It will take a sea-worthy vessel and a seasoned boater to make the trip, however, as you must cross about 9 miles of relatively open water. Any experienced sailor knows that the Great Lakes are unforgiving. Now re-read that last sentence, but this time, do it right! Yes, you know what I'm talking about- use your pirate voice! "Arrrg! Any real seaman knows them Lakes be unforgiving wenches!" That's better! Not great, but better.

The park was chartered on October 21, 1970 by the US Congress, primarily to preserve its unique and outstanding natural features, including forests, beaches, dune formations, and "ancient glacial phenomena" (...I hope I recognize that "ancient glacial phenomena" thingy when I see it). The iconic "dune climb" area is widely recognized by most of Michigan's residents. You can let the kids burn off energy conquering the dune. If you can imagine a sand box the size of a ski hill, you sorta get the idea. Essentially, you climb up so that you can run back down. It's really great fun (and exercise), especially the kids. They really love it, and what's not to love about sand wedged in every crevice of your body? Of course, the kids don't seem to mind, in fact they absolutely love it! After all, what's the point of vacation? Photos of the climb have been featured in lots of places like post cards or the cover of many State publications like maps and whatnot.

The national lakeshore also contains many cultural features. The 1871 South Manitou Island Lighthouse, three former Life-Saving Service (Coast Guard) Stations and an extensive rural historic farm district are some of the highlights. Various trails are also woven throughout area of the park. Trails are numbered, marked and maps are available. The maps are handy as they will tell you how far each trail segment is. Many people without consulting any maps climb the first dune at the "dune climb" area and think Lake Michigan is "just over the next dune". Two hours later they are still wondering through the sand, looking for the lake. (At some point they may even imagine they see things like camels, palm trees, and veiled women. Remember, it's only in your mind...). Point is check the map!

The park is named after the Chippewa Indian legend of the Sleeping Bear. According to this legend, an enormous forest fire swept across the western shore of Lake Michigan (Wisconsin) and forced a mother bear and her two cubs to flee into Lake Michigan to escape the blaze. Forced to swim for the eastern shore, the three bears went as far as they could. After many miles of swimming, the two cubs lagged behind. When the mother bear reached the shore, she lay down and waited for her cubs on the top of a bluff. The cubs, exhausted, never made it to the shore. The Great Spirit was impressed by the mother bear's eternal vigilance and rewarded her love for her cubs by creating the two islands (North and South Manitou Island) to commemorate the cubs. The dunes were formed by the blowing sand that covered the sleeping mother bear as she eternally watched for her cubs to arrive.

We are fortunate to have three cottages available in this water wonderland.

Nearby Places to see...

ARCADIA

Gypsy Hooker Fishing Charters
The Gypsy Hooker is an exceptionally clean, comfortable and well maintained, 30 ft SeaRay Sportfisherman with 12 ft beam, and totally equipped for deep trolling. Hundreds of guests in the past 20 years have experienced the excitement of landing a magnificent 10-30 pound trout or salmon. Enjoy one of the most beautiful harbors and scenic shorelines on the Great Lakes. (231) 882-9580

The Big Apple is Arcadia's local watering hole.

The Mystery Hill: The spot is on the corner of Joyfield Rd. and Putney Rd. Take M-22 north out of Arcadia, and turn right onto Joyfield Rd. (602). A couple miles down you will see a little white church. Turn right at the church onto Putney Road, and go down to the low spot before the next little swell - there is a signpost near this spot- you can see where other cars have tried it. Check for traffic - make sure the way is clear- put your car in neutral and roll UP the hill! It will work going forward or backward, better or worse depending on your starting location. Spooky!

Beulah/Benzonia/Crystal Lake/Honor

See an endangered species - The Cherry Bowl Drive-In Movie Theater

24 hr Program and Information Hotline (231) 325-3413

Admission price: Adults $7.50 and children under 12, when accompanied by an adult, are FREE. Box Office opens at 7:30, 1st feature begins at dusk. (Dusk changes time as the season moves along) Open from the 1st weekend in May through September as follows:
May through Mid June: Weekends (Fri & Sat nights)
Mid June through Labor Day: 7 nights a week
Labor Day through September: Weekends (Fri & Sat night

Crystal Mountain. Crystal Mountain of Thompsonville has increased snowmaking by 30 percent with additional pumping capacity and five new snow guns, bringing their arsenal total to 126, allowing for better skiing and riding conditions early in the season and building and maintaining a good base. For summer, they have golf, an outdoor water park, and the Michigan Legacy Art Park, a hiking trail/sculpture park. www.crystalmountain.com.


MANISTEE Area

Michigan Adventure Amusement & Water Park Michigan Adventure is Michigan's largest amusement and water park. Located just about an hour south off US 31, it makes a great day trip from Manistee. www.miadventure.com

Airplane Rides. See Manistee from the air. Plane rides are available at the Manistee airport, just three miles north of Harbor Village on US 31. Just $20 for adults, $15 for kids.

Tour the S.S. City of Milwaukee car ferry docked nearby on Manistee Lake. The 348 foot vessel offers tours and events most of the year. $6 adults, $4 kids. See www.carferry.com for details.

WHERE TO EAT: For dining, the best view in town year-round is atFour Forty West, 440 River St., 231-723-7902, 11-10 daily; brunch buffet Sunday begins at 10:30 a.m. Espresso, smoothies, sandwiches and snacks are at Village Cafe & Bagels, 345 River St., 231-398-8455, 7 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday.

For a great burger al fresco, sit on the deck at River Street Station, 350 River St., 1-616-723-8411, 11-10 daily. Catch a cappuccino, baked goods and roll-up sandwiches at the Salt City Cafe in the Briny Building, 50 Filer, 231-398-9343, 7 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday, 9-2 Sunday.

WHERE TO SHOP: Also in the Briny Building on Filer, find high-quality resort wear at Hull's of Manistee, 1-616-723-7333, 10-5 Monday-Saturday (until 6 Friday), 10-2 Sunday. Across the hall is the Black Swan Mercantile with exceptional gifts and items for the home, 231-723-7399, 10-6 Monday-Saturday, 10-2 Sunday.

Several antiques stores are on River Street; we like Antiques and Uniques, 351 River, 231-398-9339, 10-8 daily, where we spotted great deals on bird's-eye maple furniture and Arts and Crafts-era pottery.

Don't miss the Whale's Wharf, just off River and Oak, 231-723-8497, 10-8 daily (but hours vary; call ahead) for exquisite scale models of lake freighters and sailing ships, fine nautical prints, antique signs and gifts. And across U.S.-31, just east of the circa-1889 brick building that is one of Michigan's oldest continually operating firehouses is Candy Mountain, a delightfully nostalgic place to admire Frank and Sandra Eimer's great collection of antique toys. Imagine the candy stores of the 1950's? Step back in time and find candy you have not seen for decades and thought they stopped making long ago, along with freshly made delicious chocolates.It's at 279 First St., 231-723-2355, Monday-Saturday (closes at 6 Tuesday), 12-5 Sunday.

OTHER FUN STUFF: The 1900s-style trolley operates 1-6 p.m. daily and offers tours of the town at 180 Memorial Dr., overlooking the channel in the center of Manistee. Call 231-723-6525 anytime for information.

For a water view, book an hour long cruise on Water Bug Tours, 231-398-0919 anytime. Tours are 1-7 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday and holidays. Booked in advance they cost $10 for adults, $5 for kids.

Ramsdell Theatre
Historic Ramsdell Theatre Phone: (231) 723-7188
Constructed in 1903 the historic Ramsdell Theater in Manistee, Michigan, is the home for the Manistee Civic Players, Manistee Art Institute and the Manistee Symphony Orchestra and Chorus. Actor James Earl Jones began his professional career at the Ramsdell in the mid 1950's. It is also reputed to be haunted!

MANISTEE COUNTY GOLF COURSES:

Arcadia Bluffs Golf Club: One of the most beautiful courses in northern Michigan. Situated 150 feet above the Lake Michigan shoreline, it offers spectacular views from virtually every vantage point. The 18-hole, par-72 course has no water hazards, making it look like a seaside course. 231-889-3001.

Bear Lake Golf Association: One of the best public courses in northern Michigan, this little-known jewel doesn't publicize itself much. The well-maintained course plays to 6,500 yards from the men's tees. Even though the course isn't long, it demands precision shots. Water on eight holes. 231-864-3817.

Chestnut Hills: This 18-hole course (a second 9 was added in 2003) was designed by owner Doug Carter. It features fesque fairways. 231-864-2458.

Manistee National: Formerly Cobi Golf Club, this resort features two 18-hole courses including the original Canthooke Valley and the new Cutters' Ridge. Designed by Jerry Matthews, Cutters' Ridge is more challenging, with unique short holes and wetlands to navigate. It plays to 6,700 yards. 231-723-8874.

Fawn Crest: Located 18 miles east of Manistee, this heavily wooded nine-hole executive course plays to 2,068 yards. 231-848-4174.

Fox Hills: This nine-hole executive course plays to 2,340 yards. Located 4 miles south of Manistee. 231-723-3809.

Manistee: A private course with limited public play, overlooking Lake Michigan. The greens are small and the course slightly rolling. Plays to 6,031 yards from back tees. Located on Cherry Road in Manistee. 231-723-2509.

BENZIE COUNTY GOLF COURSE LIST:

Champion Hill: Located on 350 acres of the highest land in Benzie County, this new course offers scenic, open, rolling and heather-lined fairways, and picturesque views of four lakes. The 18-hole, par-72 course plays to 6,887 yards. Located 2 1/2 miles south of U.S. 31 on Marshall Road, just west of Honor. 231-882-9200.

Crystal Downs: This private course is recognized as one of the finest in the United States. Located near Frankfort.

Crystal Lake Golf Club: The 18-hole layout takes golfers through heather, orchards and hardwoods. It overlooks Crystal Lake and features a new practice facility. Located 1/2 mile north of Beulah on U.S. 31. 231-882-4061.

Crystal Mountain: The year-round resort on M-115 near Thompsonville offers 36 championship holes cut out of Benzie County woods. Crystal features the Mountain Ridge course and the Betsie Valley course. Driving range available. 231-378-2000.

Frankfort Golf Course: The nine-hole course plays to 2,552 yards with a par of 34. Located 2 miles north of Frankfort on M-22. 231-352-4101.

Mistwood Golf Course: The 27-hole championship course features a multiple tee set-up. Located at 7568 Sweet Lake Rd. in Lake Ann, 13 miles W of Traverse City. 231-275-5500.

Pinecroft: This 18-hole championship course is located 1/2 mile east of Beulah off U.S. 31 on Narrow Gauge Road. 231-882-9100.


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