Thursday, June 30, 2011

Michigan Governor's Residence

This morning the Michigan Governor's Residence was open for public tours. I hadn't done that before, so I took the girls!
Loading up, my bike got knocked over and broke. (note the disconnected piece lower in the picture, I kind of like my brakes to work.)

Biking was out. So the bright blue double jogging stroller was in. We arrived to quite a line. I hear about 460 people did the tour!

The mansion was built in 1902 by an attorney from Chicago. The 11 bedroom, 9.5 bathroom, 3 story & full basement home took three months and $15,000 to build.

In its time, this mansion has experienced birth, death, and ten Michigan governors! At one point it was in danger of being torn down because it fell into disrepair (thanks to the Great Depression). State Parks purchased it in 1944 for $15,000- the same price it had been built for decades earlier. It was restored by prison workers over the course of three years. They reinforced the floors, installed a sprinkler system, and generally cleaned up the property. Everything was able to stay original, even some of the books and furniture. It is lovely inside! However, there are signs everywhere stating, "Please, NO PICTURES INSIDE".
I managed to take a picture of the heartbreaking sign from outside (I followed the rules!)

Instead, I took notes from the women who shared the history of the Governor's Residence. My audio memory isn't THAT good!

The exterior of the mansion is Michigan White Pine, our state tree.

The boy scouts set everything up for the tour and manned the lines and were all around helpful.

One scout even offered to take a family picture for me!

Here are some more outside pictures of the Michigan Governor's Residence:

There is the Grand Hotel!

Kaya insisted I take a picture of the red flowers:

In the end, the girls' patience ran out. The tour is not really geared toward young children, but the girls were certainly welcomed. This tour is going to happen every Wednesday from 9:30-11:30am through August.

I know the double stroller fits through this spot, but I still feel nervous approaching!

It really never looks like it should squeeze past...

This horse was absolutely watching us pass!

Passing Trinity Episcopal Church:

I am working on my annual season bucket list- any thoughts? Left over from last year's list are to go up to Fort Holmes, dance at the Grand Hotel with my husband, kayak, and try a tandem bike. Suggest away, please!


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  2. Tandem bikes are a must! LOL! My youngest son (who was nine at the time) and I did it last year with success and it was so much fun! We also watched fireworks from Ft. Holmes last year...not something I want to do again because as someone who is afraid of the dark (don't laugh) it is SCAREY up there at night, LOL! Serious! Even w/ nearly 100 people it was scarey walking back to our hotel! My hubby laughs at me still. We were the only ones who brought a small lantern w/ us and I think all 100 people followed us down the stairs and through the paths back to their hotels! We nearly formed a human chain because it was so dark! Of course my hubby thought it was great leading the way w/ his lantern...laughing all the way at those of us who don't particularly care for the dark, LOL

  3. You could visit the butterfly houses...aren't there at least two on the island? I'll bet your daughters would love that. Ice cream cones at British Landing after a nice jog/walk?

    IF I were still in Michigan, my summer bucket list would include a weekend camping trip to Wilderness State Park near Mackinaw City. Maybe that is not too thrilling when you already live up that way? The beach is wonderful & the water is clear and shallow nice for the little ones. It will be fun to see what you decide to do.

  4. I am a huge fan of the Butterfly House and try to visit frequently. Funny thing, I had a whole Butterfly House blog and when I uploaded- it disappeared. I will have to take pictures next time I visit and try again! It is perfect for my girls. Thanks for the camping tip. My parents love camping and perhaps I can coax them to visit and check out Wilderness State Park- it sounds gorgeous! I love living near the Great Lakes!