Mackinac Island Christmas Bazaar Trip – Post 10

Hi Everyone!

I’m sitting in the Detroit airport waiting to board my 7:05 pm flight. Hoping it’s on time, but it sure is foggy right now!

It’s been a fantastic few days – even without the snow!!  When I get home and get settled, there will be at least three more island blogs: behind the scenes at the Grand Hotel in the winter (including a peek into the kitchen!), our seaplane arrival adventure, and the last leg of fudge making on the island in winter (how it gets off the island)!

I only have an hour layover in Atlanta, so I’m hoping we’re on time. Back in Daytona Beach around 11:30, where Ted will be waiting to take me home. Whew!!

My favorite airport – Pellston MI




Somewhere between Pellston and Detroit.


The Detroit airport is festive!

Ok – just called for boarding. We might be on time getting out of here!

Talk to y’all later in the week. Thanks so much for coming along with me on the trip to the island!!

Mackinac Island Christmas Bazaar Trip – Post 7

Oh. My. Gosh. So much to talk about, but since right now I’m sitting at a table eating lunch in the community hall, I’ll start here.

Photos below showing the crowd and all the great items for sale and at auction later today and tomorrow.



Loving being here!  So much more to tell you, but have to find a few minutes later to collect my thoughts!

Mackinac Island Christmas Bazaar Trip – Post 2

I love the Atlanta airport – AS LONG AS I can fly INTO there and not have to go through security.  Waiting in Atlanta now for my 10:58 flight to Detroit. It’s a two hour flight, and I only have 50 minutes in Detroit to catch my flight to Pellston. That makes me very nervous!!!

So I’m just hanging out – people watching, grabbing a pack of crackers and a Sprite for brunch, and hoping my checked bag gets to Pellston at the same time I do.  My only carry-ons are my purse and my laptop, so I’m going to be in big trouble if my bag is late arriving. All my winter stuff is in that bag!!

Won’t have time to post in Detroit, so the next time you hear from me will be sometime after 3:05 touchdown in Pellston, where friends Jill and Sue will be waiting.  Then we’ll decide if we can make the 4:00 ferry!!

WooHoo! Even more excited! 


Testing One, Two, Three

Hi all! Just checking out how the WordPress app works. Would love to be able to post little notes to the blog from my phone during my Christmas Bazaar visit – without having to go back to the room and open the laptop. If this works, it would be more like a Facebook post – but everyone signed up as a follower would receive it. And there would be several posts per day! 

Please comment if you received this post with just a “yes” in the comment section. 

(Bobby Lee photo of Christmas trees arriving on the island yesterday. )


A Special Story for a Special Island Lady – Patti LaPine 8/28/2014

While on Mackinac Island earlier this summer, I wrote several blog posts for Original Murdick’s Fudge and had a blast working for the wonderful Benser family and meeting both their regular and seasonal employees.  The Bensers chose to save this story and publish it on Patti LaPine’s 40th Anniversary of working for their company, and I wanted to share it with all of you tonight.

Congratulations, Patti LaPine, for your dedication and loyalty to the Benser family and to Original Murdick’s Fudge!

Patti and husband Bruce love Mackinac Island winters!

Patti and husband Bruce enjoy their winters on Mackinac Island.


C & C Take a Tour 6/11/2010

What a beautiful day it’s been on the island!   Temps in the upper 6o’s and no rain!

After a lazy morning, with breakfast at 10 a.m., Cathie and I headed off to the fort for a little shopping for their grandchildren.  Ted was working today from 12-4, and Charlie stayed home to read.  We went straight to Sutter’s Store because Cathie wanted to have a flag flown over the fort for her grandson (like we did for Matthew last year).  The fort will do that even if the child is not here and will give the flag and a certificate stating the flag was flown in the child’s honor on whatever date.  They plan to fly the flag on Monday and then call us to come pick it up.

Cathie ended up buying a “few” more things for the grandbabies, and then we headed home, taking a few shortcuts through the woods because Cathie is a confirmed woodaholic – anything that has “trees and plants and ground cover and birds and rocks and . . . .” – well, you get the picture – she loves the woods!

What is Cathie trying to get a close-up picture of? A pileated woodpecker? The bark of a white birch? A clump of Lady Slippers? No . . . .


. . . this moss-covered rock! I told you she loves the woods!

This rental buggy was taking a couple on their own private tour of the Mackinac woods.

Charlie joined us at the Carriage Museum at Surrey Ridge for lunch, and we had an opportunity to take the back-half of a carriage tour.  Neither Cathie nor Charlie had made it to Arch Rock last summer, and that landmark is on this tour.

Our three-horse hitch carriage carried around 40 passengers through the woods, past the cemeteries, past Skull Cave and Arch Rock, by the fort, then back to the Museum. Tom, our driver, kept an informative, interesting and entertaining narrative going the entire trip. Each of the Belgians pulling our carriage weighs 2,000 lbs., and each can pull three times that amount. That means our three horses could easily pull 18,000 lbs. - a lot more than the carriage and 40 people weighs.


The view of Lake Huron through Arch Rock. You can see the bicyles parked on the highway below. There are stairs from that road up to the rock, if you want to throw some climbing into your day. Our way was a lot easier!

Standing at the top of the lookout at Arch Rock, we had a great view of the Mackinac Breeze coming in from a sailing trip in the Straits. The Breeze is owned and operated by Captain Bruce, and I've been invited to do a blog from her when the weather warms a little more.

As we were leaving the "rock", we got a chance to see those two new Grand Hotel hackneys, once again out on a training drive.

Cathie and Charlie in front of Arch Rock.

After our tour and after Ted got home, we had dinner and spent another evening simply talking to each other.  No radio, no TV programs – just four adults having conversation about dozens of topics.  Such a wonderful evening on the island. 

It’s been a great week, and I’ll see you back here Saturday and Sunday mornings with a few pics, then on Monday morning for the next full-length blog.  Have a wonderful, wonderful weekend – stay safe, stay well, and God bless.

And thank you for a house full of people I love.” . . . Terri Guillemets

A Christmas Letter from the Island 12/28/09

Hello Mackinac Island fans!  I hope all of you had a blessed Christmas. 

Ted and I are in “recovery” – we ate way too much and will have to get back into “healthy mode” once the New Year is here.  That’s not a New Year’s resolution – I know I can’t count on myself to stick to a resolution – it’s more like a New Year’s suggestion!

We had a slight change of travel plans and won’t be leaving for Arkansas until Tuesday (the 29th).  I received a great Christmas email from Greg Main, who lives on the island year-round, and I asked his permission to share it with you.  He said “share away”, so I am posting it below, along with a few more of Jill’s pics from the weekend she was there, and another great photo from Liz.

Christmas letter from Greg Main:  Christmas day, this year, was as non-typical a Christmas day as I can recall.  Not only was it the first time I’ve been on the island on December 25th, not being surrounded by the usual necessary chaos associated with my family members gathering in one place, but it was also non-typical due to the weather.  At 6 a.m., my outdoor thermometer read 37.2 degrees and only continued to slowly climb as the day progressed.  The noise from a howling east wind woke me long before my body clock.  The weather channel showed a steady blow at 32 m.p.h., gusting to 45.  Overnight, our snow cover was reduced enough to show large patches of grass, turn the streets to slush, and create the usual travel related inconveniences we usually expect to find on the island in late March. 

Feeling a need to check on all the houses I look after, I covered a lot of ground on foot that day, despite the weather.  As I expected, nowhere did I see another human, and only once did I hear a distant snowmobile.  Normal people had places to go, people to see.  All the noise that day . . . ALL of it – was due to the wind.  Seldom does it churn the waters inside the harbor into the monsters I witnessed.  The waters relentlessly pounded both breakwalls, as well as the seawalls at the ends of both the Shepler’s and Star Line docks and the outdoor seating area at the Iroquois Hotel.  The flags at the end of the Arnold dock stood straight out, sharply snapping, sending out cracking noises similar to exploding firecrackers.  Random waves slammed into and over the docks, lifting one bike from its’ resting place on the Star Line dock and leaving it dangling perilously over the edge . . for now.  The spray from these waves was also something to behold, easily covering everything within 40 feet. Walking into the wind, heading out on the Shepler dock was a chore in itself.   Before I could get to the first boat ramp on the dock, I was being spritzed.   
 Short, shuffling steps were necessary as the walkway was made slippery with the rain/snow/ice combination, and the wind pushed so hard at times it created a skating effect.  I have some videos which I’ll post to Youtube soon. 
While I certainly missed the company of family and the annual visits with long-time friends on Christmas day, it was just as exhilarating to experience the island as it was that day.  Just as it has seemed during past ski outings, there were times when I was walking about that it felt I could have been the only one here.  A different experience, to say the least, yet one I will relish for a long time.
Temperatures the next day continued to be above freezing, only falling to 30 this morning.  Today was a great day to be outside, if skiing wasn’t among the list of things to do.  Our trails have been decimated with this extended warm stretch, and solid ruts of slush (again, what we usually deal with in March) make for unsteady moving about.  Not only will we have a full moon this New Year’s Eve,  it’s also a Blue Moon.  If the weather cooperates with clear skies that night, perhaps something ‘out of the ordinary’ will occur, while many of us are gathered at Fort Holmes, chanting . . “10 . . 9 . . 8 . . 7 . .”  Who knows?
Twice during the past couple of weeks, one of the familiar smells of summer was wafting about Main Street.  Joann’s Fudge,  next to McNally cottage, was alive with activity as two fudge makers could be seen plying their trade for several hours.  I’m guessing they were making fresh fudge for mail orders.  The combination of aromas of snowmobile exhaust and fresh fudge was a new one for me.  Once I complete the to-do list I have, I’ll have a little more time to wander about and hopefully have more items of interest to pass along with these emails.  The waters have calmed, there is a hint of snow in the air (with a forecast for several more inches this week), and I’m being told that Bogan Lane Inn, Cottage Inn, Pontiac Lodge and a large section of Mission Point are reporting “no vacancy” for the upcoming New Year’s weekend. 
The ferry seems to be in no danger of stopping soon due to ice conditions, as there is little to be seen floating about anywhere in the Straits area, although the schedule is only posted through January 3rd.  So  . . we’ll see how that pans out.  As quickly as winter seems to have  arrived this year, so has the month of December passed.  A  prosperous new year to all!  Take care,  Greg
  • From the Mackinac Island Tourist Bureau:  Each season, Island artists get together to show their works at the Mackinac Island Public Library. This season, Island painters Becki Barnwell, Pam Finkel, Tim Leeper and Claudette Roth will be featured at the Winter Art Show.  The opening is Tuesday, December 29th from 4pm-6pm, refreshments will be served, and the artists will be at the show for a meet and greet.

Pam Finkel, February, Oil on Canvas, 18″ x 22″, Private Collection

  • Weather on the island for the next 10 days sounds very COLD – with highs from 18-30 degrees and lows from 11-22 degrees.  Each day calls for snow showers and wind.
  • My friend Mike of shared this video of a trailer tipping over on the Mackinac Bridge.  This happened in high winds on Christmas Day

Here’s a few more snow pics from Jill.  I’m going to finish packing.  Where we are going in Arkansas is under a winter weather advisory, so maybe I’ll see some of that white stuff this week!


Many of the snow-packed trails are for cross-country skiing only - no snowmobiles allowed.


A snow-covered bench on the East Bluff.

One end of the East Bluff. If you turn the corner to the left past the "City" sign, you will be on the trail leading to Anne's Tablet.

 . . . and a great shot of the harbor from the Arnold Ferry, courtesy of Liz at


That’s all I have for now.  Have a safe, Happy New Year’s Eve.  Should be online again with another update on January 11 – if not before.  God bless.