Mackinaw City Weekend - MC & St. Ignace
Page 3: Afternoon & evening in St. Ignace and Mackinaw City

Page 1: Flying to Traverse City & drive to Mackinaw City
Page 2: 4 Hours on Mackinac Island
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The Mackinac Bridge from St. Ignace, Michigan
The Mackinac Bridge from Lakeside Cemetery in St. Ignace.
Returning to Mackinaw City, I walked back to the Rainbow Motel and drove over the Mackinac Bridge to St. Ignace. 

The first St. Ignace stop was Lakeside Cemetery. St. Ignace is centered around a natural harbor, which faces Mackinac Island, rather than the Mackinac Bridge, so there are fewer good photography locations on this side of the Mighty Mac. This cemetery has long been one of my favorite spots to photograph the Bridge from the Upper Peninsula.

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The Mackinac Bridge from Straits State Park

My second favorite spot for photographing the Bridge from St. Ignace is from the bluffs in Straits State Park. You can drive through the park to two of the three scenic lookouts. It costs Michigan residents $11/year for a Recreation Passport good for vehicle admission to Michigan State Parks, but as a non-resident, the charge is $9/day. Instead of driving through the park, I left the car parked at Lakeside cemetery and walked about 150 yards along trails to two of the lookouts which are near each other.

Returning to the car, I made a couple of more stops along the shore facing the bridge, then drove around the point toward the Coast Guard Station and the mooring of the United States Coast Guard Cutter Biscayne Bay. The end of the Biscayne Bay's dock has the largest nesting colony of common terns in the upper Great Lakes. It is a reserve and the public is not permitted to visit it, but the birds can be viewed and photographed from a distance from the nearby fishing pier at St. Ignace City Park Dock #3

Tern colony in St. Ignace, Michigan
Common Terns (Sterna hirundo) on the tip of the USCG dock
After driving through St. Ignace and making several other stops to take photos, I returned to Mackinaw City to photograph the Mighty Mac from the west. With Memorial Day just over a week away, I stopped at Mackinaw City's Lakeview Cemetery and checked on my family's graves. Over 50 of my relatives are buried here in at least 8 different plots.

My parents - Lester & Emma Stokes
Mom was born in Mackinaw City and Dad came to Mackinaw City from Canada in 1917.

My nephew - Kenneth Gordon Stokes

Charlie was my American Eskimo dog.
Many pets are buried in Lakeview Cemetery, though I know of only one other with a head stone.

I sacrificed and didn't eat at another old favorite restaurant this evening. Instead, I tried out a new brew pub which opened just a few months earlier. As long as I can remember, this was the restaurant 'Neath the Birches and I ate here with my parents many times over the years.

The new place is Bière de Mac Brew Works and I may not be the best one to review it, since I do not like beer. The menu is oriented toward the brew, with the option of 5 ounce servings to allow a tasting flight. The food portion of the menu is mostly appetizers and sandwiches. 

There were only three entrees on the menu and with it being several months before I will be in Mackinaw City again, I had to go with the Crunchy Whitefish Goujons - local whitefish, Belgian fries, Carolina style slaw, Brew Works remoulade, and lemon. I don't think this was the strength of the menu, but I have to review what I had.

The fish was OK. If I could go to a nearby restaurant at home in Kansas to have it, I would, but there are other places for it in Mackinaw City which I like more. The remoulade is a French style tartar sauce that I didn't care for and the coleslaw was so-so. The Belgium fries were good, but I am more of a smaller fry fan.

I should have known not to try the Cran-Apple cider when the server couldn't tell me the brand or where it came from. I didn't care for the cider and didn't finish it.

It may sound like I'm trying to discourage people from trying this place, but it is more a case that they should only go if it is what they are looking for. The target market may be more local, rather than travelers. There is a focus on people becoming annual members, with various perks.

Bière de Mac Brew Works - Mackinaw City, Michigan
Bière de Mac Brew Works

Beers at Bière de Mac Brew Works
A flight of 5 ounce beers at the next table

Crunchy Whitefish Goujons at Bière de Mac Brew Works
Crunchy Whitefish Goujons with Belgium fries

Driving back into town, I revisited the Odawa Casino at the edge of town, which opened in May 2016. It appeared unchanged from the fall. There are only slot machine type video machines. No tables, no video poker. There were less than 20 people gaming.

There is a small sign at the road which does not say that it is a Casino. There are large casino signs on the building, but that is way back from the road. It was early evening and they were closing in about an hour.

The guard at the entrance said they are going to build a bigger building with more games, which will open next spring.

Odawa Casino - Mackinaw City, Michigan
Odawa Casino - Mackinaw

The rest of the evening was spent visiting some of the new stores in Mackinaw City, taking more photos, and playing Pokemon Go.
The Mackinac Bridge at night.
The Mackinac Bridge ("My" Bridge)

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