Summertime in Michigan means different things to different people. For some it’s traveling to their cottage, relaxing in a hammock and forgetting the world they left behind. Others prefer getting more close to nature and they pitch a tent in one of the many beautiful campgrounds that dot our state. Still others prefer the amenities of home without having to make the bed and choose a hotel or world class resort to kick back in. Whatever your choice, you can’t go wrong in Michigan. Growing up here I had the advantage of experiencing some of this firsthand, my bride on the other hand didn’t. She’s a Hoosier. A farm girl who raised horses and participated in horse shows across the Midwest. After we first met and I suggested we take a road trip to my home state, she didn’t look too excited about the idea. After some probing I learned her impression of Michigan was a horse barn on some fairgrounds in a part of Michigan that as they say, “has been rode hard and put away wet.” I was thinking pasties and fudge. She was thinking something else entirely. As we headed up the west coast of the state it didn’t take long for her impressions to change. Actually, it was the first time she put her feet in a lake and could see her toes. Something I had taken for granted came as a revelation to her. See, in Indiana they don’t have lakes like we do here. They have reservoirs — i.e., giant mud puddles. The further North we traveled the more her opinion of Michigan changed. From every small town we passed through, to the breathtaking vistas, she was being converted. Once we hit Charlevoix the deal was done and after Mackinac Island she was a confirmed Michigander, and sailor of sorts. You see as our ferry made the turn around the lighthouse in the harbor we looked off to our right to see if we could spot our hotel. It was kind hard to miss as its front yard was full of drunken sailors who were “unwinding” from the Chicago to Mackinac race. It’s amazing how inebriated sailors with a lack of sleep and lots of rum can keep you entertained. So you see, summer can mean a lot of things to a lot of people. For me it was showing my Hoosier farm girl that there’s no better place to be than Michigan in the summer time.
Pete Ruffing is the Sales Director at M3 Group in downtown Lansing. He and his wife of 14 years Brenda live in Okemos.