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Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012

Renaissance Faires are outdoor activities normally held on weekends where entertainers, actors and actresses dress, talk, dance and sing to emulate a certain period of time. Most Renaissance faires emulate the era of Queen Elizabeth I of England’s reign but faires can do any period that pleases them ranging from pirates to vikings even including fairies and mermaids. Some Renaissance faires are hosted at playgrounds, or permanent theme parks or private spaces. Some are held for a day, some days, weeks, even months. To spice up the activity for those held months long, themes are followed every weekends. Visitors are most encouraged to come in costumes.

Medieval Saxon and his Lady of the Chess at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

Medieval Saxon and his Lady of the Chess at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

 

The Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 ran for 7 weekends commencing on the 3rd weekend of August and culminating on the last weekend of September. It was held in Dixie Highway, Holly where permanent structures and stages were built to make it look and feel like a  fictional English village. Listed below are the themes for each weekends. Hubby and I decided to attend the second weekend for the Highland Fling because he is a huge fan of bag pipes and kilts.  Hubby’s father side can also trace their roots to Scotland so that weekend felt like honoring his family’s heritage. Hubby was dressed up as a Medieval Saxon while I was dressed as the Lady of the Chess. We were joined by hubby’s brother David and his wife Lynne on the first day, Saturday, and on Sunday, hubby and I attended the faire by ourselves (but we were sadly not in costumes)

Royal Pet and Ale Festival – August 18th and 19th
Highland Fling! – August 25th and 26th
High Seas Adventure! – September 1st, 2nd and 3rd
Wonders of the World! – September 8th and 9th
Festival Friday! – September 14th , Shamrocks and Shenanigans! – September 15th and 16th
Harvest Huzzah! – September 22nd and 23rd
Sweet Endings! – September 29th and 30th

And because there is so much to share about Michigan Renaissance Faire, I have decided to divide my blog entries into different themes as well. This post serves as an introduction to the Renaissance Faire especially for those of you who have not encountered nor heard this yet. And to give justice to this introduction, it is but appropriate and an honor to present to you Her Majesty, Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth I of England.

Long Live the Queen!

Her Majesty, Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth I of England on her parade at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

Her Majesty, Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth I of England on her parade at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

The Queen's Parade at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

The Queen’s Parade at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

Scottish bag pipes and drums and fairies accompany Her Royal Highness during the Queen's Parade at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

Scottish bag pipes and drums and fairies accompany Her Royal Highness during the Queen’s Parade at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

The Royal Guards and Royal Court during the Queens Parade at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

The Royal Guards and Royal Court during the Queens Parade at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

The Court at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

The Court at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

 

The highlight of the accession tilts of Queen Elizabeth I was jousting. It was originally a military tactic used during the High Medieval Ages but later evolved as a sport in the 15th century. The Renaissance Faire gives you a glimpse of this medieval joust as a tournament. Knights in shining armor are not just literature fictions and fantasies at the faire because inside the walls of this 17 acre grounds, your knight in his shining armor up on his horse attacking his opponent in high speed comes to life.

Knight in shining armor during a joust at Michigan Renaissace Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

Knight in shining armor during a joust at Michigan Renaissace Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

Knight in shining armor during a joust at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

Knight in shining armor during a joust at Michigan Renaissance Faire 2012 in Holly, Michigan.

And if you are curious why I chose to be a Lady of Chess, remember that in the game of chess, the Queen protects the King. Enjoy the Renaissance!

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Posted by on September 20, 2012 in Michigan, MichiganRenFair

 

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Petoskey, Michigan

Petoskey holds a special place in my hubby’s heart and now I understand why. It was 60 degrees when we visited the town, just the way hubby loves it yet a bit chilly for his Filipina wife, but boy oh boy, Petoskey is a sight to behold and I could not wait to explore the district. The town was formerly known as Bear River but later renamed after the Ottawa Indian Chief Petosega. We woke up to a lovely sunny morning and a beautiful view of Lake Michigan just right outside our balcony greeted us. We didn’t really have a plan for the day so we decided to stroll downtown and headed to the marina. While we missed the sunset Petoskey is known for, we surely awed at the tranquility of the town in the morning.

Waking up to a beautiful morning at Apple Tree Inn in Petoskey, Michigan.

Waking up to a beautiful morning at Apple Tree Inn in Petoskey, Michigan.

Random sights at downtown Petoskey, Michigan.

Random sights at downtown Petoskey, Michigan.

Petoskey Art Center in Petoskey, Michigan.

Petoskey Art Center in Petoskey, Michigan.

Crooked Tree, Petoskey Art Center in Petoskey, Michigan.

Crooked Tree, Petoskey Art Center in Petoskey, Michigan.

A gazebo at downtown Petoskey in Michigan.

A gazebo at downtown Petoskey in Michigan.

Some vintage items you can find in the shops around Petoskey, Michigan. Some shops have been in business for 20 years or more.

Some vintage items you can find in the shops around Petoskey, Michigan. Some shops have been in business for 20 years or more.

Hubby at Petoskey marina in Michigan.

Hubby at Petoskey marina in Michigan.

Enjoying Lake Michigan at Petoskey marina in Petoskey, Michigan.

Enjoying Lake Michigan at Petoskey marina in Petoskey, Michigan.

Petoskey City Park is situated right beside Petoskey Marina in Michigan.

Petoskey City Park is situated right beside Petoskey Marina in Michigan.

 

On Petoskey’s waterfront is the Little Traverse Historical Museum. It is a restored abandoned Chicago and West Michigan Railroad station. This museum is proud to showcase Ernest Hemmingway’s stories and artifacts as he spend his summers in Northern Michigan.

Little Traverse Historical Museum in Petoskey, Michigan.

Little Traverse Historical Museum in Petoskey, Michigan.

Inside Little Traverse Historical Museum in Petoskey, Michigan.

Inside Little Traverse Historical Museum in Petoskey, Michigan.

Some displays inside Little Traverse Historical Museum in Petoskey, Michigan.

Some displays inside Little Traverse Historical Museum in Petoskey, Michigan.

Some displays of vintage clothing inside Little Traverse Historical Museum in Petoskey, Michigan. On the left is the robe for Michigan Winter Queen which has been passed on from winner after winner.

Some displays of vintage clothing inside Little Traverse Historical Museum in Petoskey, Michigan. On the left is the robe for Michigan Winter Queen which has been passed on from winner after winner.

 

The note on the robe says

Michigan Winter Queen : An important part of Winter Queen’s wardrobe, this robe passed from winner to winner each year. The selection of the Queen, as a rule, took place on Friday night during the first weekend of the Winter Carnival. Elsie Bohm became the first Winter Queen in 1928 . The criteria for selecting a Winter Queen matched the Miss America contest, except instead of a swimsuit contest she had to be proficient in winter sport.

As to where to dine in Petoskey, check below:

View of Lake Michigan from Papa Lou's pizza in Petoskey, Michigan.

View of Lake Michigan from Papa Lou’s pizza in Petoskey, Michigan.

Great dining experience at City Park Grill in Petoskey, Michigan.

Great dining experience at City Park Grill in Petoskey, Michigan.

 

I guess starting today Petoskey will not only hold a special place in my hubby’s heart but in my heart as well. My heart, definitely.

Wonderful memories with hubby at Petoskey, Michigan.

Wonderful memories with hubby at Petoskey, Michigan.

 

P.S. I got lucky to see a mob of wild deer on our way to Petoskey and jumped out of the car and sneeked for snapshots. I suppose this was around Harbor Springs.

A mob of wild deer spotted in Harbor Springs on our way to Petoskey, Michigan.

A mob of wild deer spotted in Harbor Springs on our way to Petoskey, Michigan.

 

And for more information and perspective about Petoskey, check on the Google Street View below :

 

 

 
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Posted by on September 11, 2012 in Michigan, TRAVEL

 

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Michilimackinac, Michigan

Michilimackinac (pronounced as Mish-i-li-mack-i-naw) is the area between the Lower and Upper Peninsula of Michigan. It is the region around the Straits of Mackinac between Lake Huron and Lake Michigan. The name Michilimackinac has been a subject of debate among scholars but it is widely understood as a Michigan Native American term that means “The Great Turtle” referring to the shape of Mackinac Island.  This is where hubby showed me three subjects I am very passionate about : a story of Native Americans, a lake, and a lighthouse.

The Straits of Mackinac functioned as a fur trade summer depot so Fort Michilimackinac was built by the French originally as a trading post, not for military purposes. It was later taken over by the British. The Native Americans, captured the fort after they massacred most of the British garrison, but the British re-garrisoned the fort in 1764 and abandoned the area in 1780 when they moved to Mackinac Island and established Fort Mackinac.

With an actor playing as a Native American at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

With an actor playing as a Native American at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

A tipi and drying fur at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

A tipi and drying fur at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

An actor playing as a French trader at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

An actor playing as a French trader at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

One of the residences inside Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

One of the residences inside Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

The church inside Fort Michilimackinac, MIchigan.

The church inside Fort Michilimackinac, MIchigan.

One of the residences inside Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

One of the residences inside Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

Inside one of the residences at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

Inside one of the residences at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

With an actor and an actress at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

With an actor and an actress at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

With actors playing as British soldiers at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

With actors playing as British soldiers at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

With an actor playing as British soldier at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

With an actor playing as British soldier at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

Acting as a British soldier at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

Acting as a British soldier at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

Hubby and I at the gate of Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

Hubby and I at the gate of Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

 

The Mackinac Bridge is regarded as the dividing line between Lake Michigan and Lake Huron. This represents the narrowest point between these two connected bodies of water. From Mackinac standpoint, the left of the Mackinac Bridge is Lake Michigan and the right is Lake Huron.

Lake Michigan with Mackinac Bridge as the background.

Lake Michigan with Mackinac Bridge as the background.

Hubby and I with Lake Michigan and Mackinac Bridge at the background

Hubby and I with Lake Michigan and Mackinac Bridge at the background

Peek of Lake Michigan and Mackinac Bridge from Fort Michilimackinac watchtower.

Peek of Lake Michigan and Mackinac Bridge from Fort Michilimackinac watchtower.

Lake Huron and Mackinac Bridge, Michigan.

Lake Huron and Mackinac Bridge, Michigan.

 

While the Straits of Mackinac was critical to the trading system, it was also hazardous. So the Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse was built to guide ships to a safe passage. I guess why I love lighthouses is the fact that it beacons and it guides, and in this life, we all need one.

Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse at Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan.

 

This is my story of Michilimackinac where hubby treated me with an encounter with a Native American, showed me lakes, and showcased a lighthouse. Is it Christmas yet?

 

 
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Posted by on September 9, 2012 in Michigan, TRAVEL

 

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Sturgeon River – Wolverine, Michigan

There are moments in my life I will cherish forever but that afternoon in Wolverine, Michigan is extra special. It is a small village in the northern part of the state with a population of less than 500. There is really nothing fancy about the town – no signboards shouting for attention, no trace of Hollywood invasion, no non-sense – but the town has a park that lies along the side of the Sturgeon River and that sweet little haven is where my hubby decided to bring me for a surprise picnic. This place is naturally and effortlessly mystical. I have always been flawed and imperfect, but that day, that very moment, I was reminded that life is truly beautiful and wondered how will I be without him.

How did I fall for Jon? If you know him, you will know why. And by the Sturgeon River, I know, I have fallen deeper.

View of Sturgeon River from Wolverine Village Park in Michigan.

View of Sturgeon River from Wolverine Village Park in Michigan.

View of Sturgeon River from Wolverine Village Park in Michigan.

View of Sturgeon River from Wolverine Village Park in Michigan.

View of Sturgeon River from Wolverine Village Park in Michigan.

View of Sturgeon River from Wolverine Village Park in Michigan.

View of Sturgeon River from Wolverine Village Park in Michigan.

View of Sturgeon River from Wolverine Village Park in Michigan.

Wolverine Village Park on the side banks of Sturgeon River in Wolverine, Michigan.

Wolverine Village Park on the side banks of Sturgeon River in Wolverine, Michigan.

Picnic on the side banks of Sturgeon River in Wolverine, Michigan.

Picnic on the side banks of Sturgeon River in Wolverine, Michigan.

 

Here is a virtual tour of Sturgeon River courtesy of Google Street View below :

 

 

 
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Posted by on September 7, 2012 in Michigan, TRAVEL

 

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Tawas City, Michigan

Travelling has always been for me a constant battle against curiosity and my recent trip to Michigan with my hubby is a proof. Passing by cities and towns with unique names had left me asking the origin of each names and Tawas City was not spared from the hook. Some claim that “Tawas” is derived from the word “Ottawas” asserting that the Ottawa Indians once inhabited the area. However, historical information contends that the name was after the leader of the Saginaw band Chippewas, who were actually the first to camp along Tawas Bay,old Chief O-ta-was.

What I love about Tawas City? It overlooks beautiful Lake Huron on Michigan’s Sunrise Side Coastal Highway Heritage Route!

View of Lake Huron in Michigan from Tawas City Gateway Park.

View of Lake Huron in Michigan from Tawas City Gateway Park.

Lake Huron as viewed in Tawas City, Michigan.

Lake Huron as viewed in Tawas City, Michigan.

View of Lake Huron in Michigan from Tawas City Gateway Park.

View of Lake Huron in Michigan from Tawas City Gateway Park.

View of Lake Huron in Michigan from Tawas City Gateway Park.

View of Lake Huron in Michigan from Tawas City Gateway Park.

Hubby and I in Tawas City Gateway Park with Lake Huron as our background.

Hubby and I in Tawas City Gateway Park with Lake Huron as our background.

Check on Google Street View below for additional information:

 
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Posted by on September 5, 2012 in Michigan, TRAVEL

 

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Kalamazoo, Michigan

There is lesser traffic jam in Kalamazoo and hubby loves it. But this time his brother David is driving and his wife Lynne is occupying the passenger seat to tour us around the city. Their son Josiah sat beside me and hubby at the backseat, entertaining us with his cute chuckles. Much to my delight, we decided to visit a chocolate shop.

Confections with Convictions was opened by Dale Anderson with the aim to help juveniles develop job skills and help them become more successful members of the society. I was delighted at the wide variety of handmade truffles they offer but more impressively they support fair trade believing in fair price, fair labor conditions, direct trade, democratic and transparent organizations, community development and environmental sustainability.

Confections with Convictions was opened by Dale Anderson with the aim to help juveniles develop job skills and help them become more successful members of the society

Confections with Convictions was opened by Dale Anderson with the aim to help juveniles develop job skills and help them become more successful members of the society

 

We had dinner at downtown Kalamazoo after the sweet treat and walked around to enjoy and breathe the beauty of this city..

Random sights at downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Random sights at downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Random sights at downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Random sights at downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Kalamazoo Public Library

Kalamazoo Public Library

Random sight at downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Random sight at downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Random sight at downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Random sight at downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Random sight at downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Random sight at downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan.

 

We also tried to visit Asylum Lake Preserve but it was nearly dark when we arrived there so we decided to call it a day and do another visit next time :)

Asylum Lake Preserve in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Asylum Lake Preserve in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

 

Check on the Google Street View below for additional information about downtown Kalamazoo:

 

 

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2012 in Michigan, TRAVEL

 

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Meeting the Sellers Family

I finally met my hubby’s brother David and his wife Lynne and their adorable son, Josiah, in Kalamazoo, Michigan. I was ecstatic. David and Lynne are a wonderful couple and in an instant I felt we are a family. They showed us their garden and hubby and I were so jealous. David picked some sweet corn for us and taught me how to peel the corn husk completely while he patiently explained how each individual kernel of corn produces silk strand. See, I am learning! They also have squash, tomato and some flowers. We were particularly amused at the mushroom growing on top of one of the corn cubs looking like David has been doing mutation experiments right at his own backyard.

My brother-in-law David's garden in his backyard in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

My brother-in-law David’s garden in his backyard in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

My brother-in-law David and I at his garden in his backyard in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

My brother-in-law David and I at his garden in his backyard in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

My brother-in-law David's garden in his backyard in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

My brother-in-law David’s garden in his backyard in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

 

Our nephew Josiah is no doubt a darling. He smiles at everyone and his beautiful blue eyes are irresistible, an invitation to a cuddle or a kiss.

My nephew, Josiah Sellers.

My nephew, Josiah Sellers.

My nephew, Josiah Sellers.

My nephew, Josiah Sellers.

 

Lynne was very kind to help hubby sew the buttons of his Renaissance leg wrap for the festival. Thank you Lynne.

 

We missed Mom and Dad for this trip but we are planning for a get-together where all 7 of us are present. Soon, very soon. And I will let you know about it.

Hubby and our nephew Josiah Sellers.

Hubby and our nephew Josiah Sellers.

 

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2012 in Michigan, TRAVEL

 

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