5 More Things in Michigan You Probably Don't Know About
Collector of obscure knowledge as I am, I've found five more things from the mitten-shaped state to share with readers.
Pentwater Style Popcorn
The classic combination of caramel and yellow cheddar popcorn makes up the flavor profile of Chicago Style Popcorn. Its lesser-known cousin from the north is Pentwater Style Popcorn. Like Chicago Style, it contains caramel corn. Instead of yellow cheddar, it substitutes white cheddar for a lighter touch and a still-amazing flavor.
Reference/More Info: Pentwater Popcorn
The Tridge in Midland
What's better than a bridge connecting two land masses? How about a bridge-and-a-half connecting three land masses? That's exactly what's been done in Midland at the Tridge. The footpath bridge crosses three spans of river at once with its unique Y shape and provides access to the local park.
Mackinac Bridge "Drivers Assistance Program"
The Mackinac Bridge itself is fairly well-known, even outside of Michigan, as being one of the longest bridges in the country. The five-mile span links Michigan's Upper and Lower Peninsulas at their closest point, a four-mile separation across the Straits of Mackinac. Crossing the bridge has scared many a motorist due to the immense size of the bridge and its tendencies to gently sway in high winds. Unknown to many, though, is a free "Drivers Assistance Program" for those uncomfortable with driving across the bridge. For no additional fee beyond the standard bridge fare, the Mackinac Bridge Authority offers a service wherein a driver will come to you, either at the southbound toll plaza or northbound just prior to the bridge, and drive you across. The bridge authority also offers paid transport services for pedestrians, cyclists, and snowmobilers unable to cross the bridge on their own.
When most people think of Michigan, they think "Dear God, please make the lake effect snow STOP!" Over 350 million years ago, though, the mitten was slightly further south — kinda close to the equator. The warm, salty sea provided a great place for coral reefs to form, and so it did. Hexagonaria percarinata colonies formed and thrived, creating the unique basis for the Petosky Stone. Over the course of that 350 million years or so, plates moved, coral fossilised, and glaciers scraped. Now, all across the northern Lower Peninsula, these polished chunks of fossilized coral with a distinctive hexagonal pattern await being dug up on Lake Michigan beaches.
Reference/More Info: Petosky Area
Krupp's Novelty Shop
This one holds a special place in my heart, as it's along the route I take when traveling home to visit family for the holidays. On M-13 just north of I-69 is one of the largest concrete companies in Michigan. (Possibly the US as well?) With a wide variety of wares available, the shop expanded from a core of birdbaths and yard displays, and now sells everything from concrete fountains and birdbaths to memorial benches, terra cotta pots for planting to patio stones, gazing globes to gliders and adirondack chairs. If it belongs in your yard, you can probably spot it from the intersection of M-13 and M-21 and buy it in the shop.
Reference/More Info: Krupp's Novelty Shop
Main Photo Credit: Nick Nolte