Maybe Kid Rock was onto something in his song “All Summer Long”. Michigan was a surprisingly wonderful place to spend the summer. I did my Tauber project at Ford Headquarters in Dearborn and stayed in Ann Arbor throughout most of the summer. Seeing all the exotic places where people vacationed and interned I decided to make it my mission to see all that Michigan had to offer.
I started the summer doing a 60-mile bike ride called the Zoo-De-Mac that goes from Boyne Highlands (of Ross “ski” trip fame) and ended on Mackinac Island. The weather was great, traffic light and the people unimaginably friendly on the way. Northern Michigan has many fabulous beaches and Mackinac Island has some of the best fudge I’ve ever eaten. The island is also a popular vacation spot without being too crowded. I also stopped by Traverse City, which is another popular Northern Michigan town known for its beaches and quaint shopping.
To continue my island hopping ways I spent a few sunny afternoons on Belle Isle in Detroit including a historic speakeasy tour and the Detroit Grand Prix. Racecars are my thing, but anyone would love an afternoon kicking around this historic park on a sunny afternoon. The nights in Michigan are warm as well so no need to bundle up for late night stargazing on the island either.
One of the other highlights of the summer was Greenfield Village and the Henry Ford Museum. I had some friends come to town throughout the summer so I of course had to take them there to see the artifacts and spend a day walking through all the historical buildings Henry Ford collected. I secretly got pretty into the historic baseball league too and found some folks during my internship from Ford who were just as into it. It seems to stay light and warm forever in Michigan so I stayed late watching the games and BBQ’ing with friends way into the night.
Sure, I was a little jealous of my friends who interned across the country and world, but I ended up really enjoying Ann Arbor and Michigan during the summer. Whether it was SummerFest or Art Fair in Ann Arbor or traveling around there was no shortage of things to do. I think Michigan crams all of their fun into the warm months. This winter when I am snowshoeing to class, it won’t seem quite so absurd that some people love living in Michigan.