Wednesday, July 20, 2016

7/20 Which is it Mackinac or Mackinaw?

Last night, after I blogged the moon rose above the marina.  See how beautiful it looked.

Mackinac and Mackinaw are both pronounced Mackinaw with the "aw" sound at the end.  The area was originally called Michinnimakinong by the Ojibwa Indians.  The French shortened it to Mackinac, which would be pronounced with the "aw" sound.  When the British arrived in the area, they wrote it as it was pronounced, Mackinaw.  So it is Mackinaw City, Mackinac Bridge and Mackinac Island.  All of them are pronounced Mackinaw.

With that lesson under our belts, we signed up to take the ferry over to Mackinac Island and to take a horse drawn carriage tour.  By taking the 9 am ferry, we got an extra treat as the ferry went under the Mackinac Bridge and gave us some extra history of the bridge.  The bridge was completed in 1957 and connected the upper and lower peninsulas of Michigan.  The bridge spans the Straits of Mackinac.  One side of the bridge is Lake Huron; the other side is Lake Michigan.  The main towers are 552 feet tall, the bridge is 200 feet above the water, and it is 5 miles long.  We got some neat pictures.

As we approached Mackinac Island, we viewed the Grand Hotel and the town from the water.

The ferry went amazingly close to the Lighthouse. 
The island does not allow cars.  Bikes are everywhere as are horse drawn carriages.  Horse drawn vehicles take supplies from the ferries and take luggage to the hotels too.  We signed up for a carriage tour.  It would take us to Fort Mackinac too.  The horses are the stars of the island.  There is one doctor on the island but 3 veterinarians!    Our horses' names were John and Rock.  Here is picture of me standing next to John.
The carriages were very comfortable.
So where do they put all that horse poop?  They have pooper scoopers everywhere.  This one is horse drawn and goes around the island collecting the poop.  The island sells it for fertilizer.
The carriage took us past The Grand Hotel.
It circles the island taking us to points of interest including past the stables.   There is a natural arch on the island.  John and I had our picture taken there. 
Looking through the water, the water is so blue and clear that you can see to the bottom of the lake.

We arrived at Fort Mackinac to take the tour.  The Fort was held by the British through the war of 1812.  After the war, it was ceded to the Americans. 
It was a working fort until 1895 when it became a national and later, a state park.  The views of the harbor were terrific.  The palisades did their job to protect.  We watched the firing of the cannon and some maneuvers on the parade ground before going to lunch in the Fort overlooking the harbor.  The views were amazing.

After lunch we headed back down town to the Biddle House and the furrier shop.  Mackinac Island has 16, yes 16, fudge shops on the island.  Murdick's Fudge has been made on the island since 1887. We thought that was a good recommendation.  We enjoyed watching them make the fudge and, of course, we HAD to buy some.  We have sampled it and declared it worthy of their reputation.

After taking the ferry back to Mackinaw City, John took a nap and I set out to see the stores.  I had heard that there was hot dog place called Weinerlicious.  I was not ready to see the huge hot dog with all the fixings that they had on top of the building.  Thought you might like to see it.

Thursday and Friday call for winds and rain, so we will stay put another few days.  There is a colonial village and ice breaker museum to visit.

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