Exploring the UP

After all of the excitement of the #minionthemack2015 we decided to skip the music festival and find some fun of our own! Anyways, it was some sort of Jimmy Buffet tribute band and that’s not really my genre. Since Ali, Mark, Alex, German and Krystal had gone over to the island, the rest of us decided to hang out. We dropped off Melissa’s car at the hotel and she climbed into My Precious. Rey had some time to kill before church so he followed us to the world famous Mystery Spot.


It’s terribly mysterious

So we bought our tickets and waited for our turn to go in and see what was so mysterious.


We had some time to kill so we visited the Bargain Shack, because why not?

The Mystery Spot has a crooked building and when you go in everything is slanted. They take you through a couple of rooms and make you (well, really it was just Rey and some random children) do simple tasks like try to walk on a board that’s on an incline and get out of a chair that’s tipped back.


Rey had a much easier time with this task. He couldn’t get out of the chair at all!

We had a bit more time before Rey had to leave us so we decided to double back to the Deer Park for some selfies with the giant deer.


Giant running deer! I love the art in Michigan!

Rey took off to catch mass and Melissa, Brandy and I decided to pop into Suzy’s Pasties because we thought that would be an excellent photo opportunity and none of us really knew what a pastie was! Along the way we stopped for a photo shoot at an overlook with an excellent view of the Mackinac Bridge.


Melissa taking a picture of me taking a picture!

The pastie shop was actually great fun! There was a kid working the register. We ordered one of each (for our photo shoot) and learned that pasties are like meat turnovers (except for Brandy’s which was the veggie version, I was not a fan). Suzy came out to help with the order and told us we were mispronouncing “pastie” though we were kind of enjoying the joke! She had an excellent selection of Yooper postcards so we got one of those as well. Then we took our pasties out for some photo fun.


Mmmmm delicious! Well not the veggie one so much…

Some guy passing by told Melissa they were supposed to be dipped in gravy but none of us liked gravy had the patience for that.


Melissa found some creative uses for her pasties!

We had a lot of time to kill before Rey got out of church so we decided to head towards Castle Rock where we were going to meet him in case there was anything to do over there. Along the way we stopped to take a picture with the local moose since Brandy had not had any luck spotting one anywhere else!


One of the local Yoopers stopped and suggested that we take pictures punching the moose so we could tell everyone “we hit a moose”. Really, I love these people!

But trying to break records is hard work and it’s important to stay hydrated so we stopped at a cantina on the way for some adult beverages.


Sadly, they’d run out of the cherry one I wanted, but the three different flavors we all got were still delicious!

When we were fully refreshed we decided to head back to Castle Rock and wait for Rey. Then we drove by a deserted Victorian Village and discovered that and the adjacent putt putt course were for sale! We stopped to explore in case this was a potential goldmine business opportunity.


Brandy and I called dibs on the end units and Melissa claimed the brick one because it would have less upkeep which was fine since mine had the lovely deck overlooking the lake and Melissa needs to free up some time to help me with the upkeep.

Nobody else seemed to care that the putt putt course had some no trespassing signs and there was a cop car parked across the street at the American Legion hall so we ducked under the cobwebs and climbed over the rope to explore.


If any of the local law enforcement are reading this, we were considering purchasing this place, I swear!

Rey called and said mass was over and he was on his way so we got back on the road and all of us went to Castle Rock. Because the locals love the MINIs, we got in for free! We stopped to check out the souvenirs on the way.


I’m still kinda sad Brandy didn’t buy this hat, but I guess it would have been too hard to wear it home and we really didn’t have a ton of room after all the souvenirs I’d purchased!

Castle Rock has nothing to do with castles, my friends. It’s just a big piece of rock that is really fucking high and has a lot of fucking stairs to get there! I mean it! I live in a fourth floor walk up and try to avoid stairs if possible since I get to climb them so much at home.


Just like the stairway to heaven. Literally. I mean it felt like we climbed that high.

Totally worth the climb when we got to the top and saw the view!


I think you can see TWO great lakes from up there!

On the way back down we strayed from the path for a few photos.


That’s right, we take chances. Really, someone could have gotten a very large splinter from those old boards!

We also stopped to check out Paul Bunyan which was actually the reason we’d stopped at Castle Rock in the first place.


The giant Paul Bunyan statue wasn’t as giant as I’d hoped but still great fun to visit!

Rey was hungry and wanted to go get some dinner so we bout a few trinkets and headed out the door. As we walked out we ran into a family posing for pictures with My Precious. I stopped to talk with them.


They traveled all the way from London Ontario to join the #minionthemack2015. Lovely family!

We decided to go to Bob’s Big Boy because of the amount of fun we’d imagine we would be having with the giant statues out front but it turned out we had the nicest waitress in the world, delicious food, and even more fun once we went inside!


It’s a damn shame every town doesn’t have a Bob’s Big Boy but then I guess it wouldn’t be as special.

It was starting to get dark and since we were so close to the North Pole or something it must have been close to midnight or something. We headed to the gas station to fill up for our journey home and then back to the hotel. But did we let the fun end there? No, my friends, we did not! We parked our cars and walked next door to the Souvenir Barn. While everyone else was shopping, I took a trip to the rooftop viewing platform to catch a sunset picture (which I’m sure my friend Hilary can appreciate!)


The perfect way to wrap up my first #minionthemack

About isherri

I'm a family engagement expert who travels for work and for pleasure. In fact, I’m half hippy, half clown, latte sipping, brunch munching, MINI driving, rabid social media enthusiast.
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2 Responses to Exploring the UP

  1. Hilary says:

    Beautiful sunset! 🙂


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