If I had to describe myself with one word it would be artist - a visual artist and an artist with words. My artwork is included in Ohio Online Visual Arts Registry. I'm working with various galleries in the Midwest to promote my oil paintings and abstract light photography.

 

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Traverse City – Cherries

Image: Beachfront in Traverse City, Michigan

Life’s a Beach … and a Bowl of Cherries

© Becky Linhardt 2010

Summer beach time and cherry season coexist in the Traverse City and Leelanau Peninsula area of Michigan.  The happy synergy of the two means vacation experiences and memories are flavored by the bounty of regional and unique cherry foods and drinks.

What’s Special

Tasty Traverse – Self Guided Foodie Tour

The community’s commitment to unique, fun, local, and organic local foods prompted the CVB to create a brochure for foodies that can be accessed on their web site.

Cherry Festival

The celebration of all things cherry starts with the National Cherry Festival, in early July.  However, Mother Nature decides the actual cherry harvest time but in general July is peak cherry time in Michigan.

The Cherry Republic

The retail complex in nearby Glen Arbor is considered the “Capital of the Cherry Republic.” Tall trees shade the paths the interconnect the Great Hall of the Republic where there are over 150 cherry products available including cherry salsas, preserves, and t-shirts; the Winery, where parents can taste a variety of cherry wines and kids can sample Boomchuggalugga cq Cherry Soda Pop; and the Café & Bakery for those wonderful Boomchunka cq cookies and more.  see also Michigan’s Cherry Republic

Cherries Moobilee

Of the more than 120 flavors created at Moomers, an ice cream shop in Traverse City, Cherry Moobilee is probably one of their top five flavors. The black cherry ice cream has chunks of dark cherries, red tart cherries, home-made brownie pieces and is swirled with chocolate fudge.  It is so yummy that it has been featured on Good Morning America. see also Moomers Home Made Ice Cream

Cherry Pie

The locals are serious about cherries because it’s a means of living for many farm families with orchards that have been in their families for generations.  Local businesses such as the Grand Traverse Pie Company use only Michigan grown fruit.  The company offers 6 different styles of cherry pie among their offering of 35 different fruit pies and 10 cream pies.  About 20 different flavors are available on any given day at their retail store.

Chocolate and Cherries

At the Grocer’s Daughter Chocolates owner Mimi Wheeler has developed  plenty of cherry and chocolaty goodies for her store in Empire near the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.  There you can find dried cherries covered in a rich dark chocolate created with cocoa from a cooperative in Ecuador that is a bolder chocolate. That rich chocolate and cherries can also be found in the Verry cq Berry Bar, the Wally Bar, Cherry/Pumpkin Seed Puddles, and surrounding the fruit flavored centers of her luscious truffles.

Cherry Beer

At Right Brain Brewery, they work with local fruits and almost always have a cherry beer on tap.  Operating with a unique business plan, the micro-brewery does not bottle its beers, has no standard flagship beers.  They have created over 100 different beers at this microbrewery and on any given day, there will be 13 unique beers available on tap.

Cherry Wine

The west coast of Michigan is noted for its wines and almost every winery in the area makes a cherry wine.  Chateau Chantal makes a great cherry port called Cerise that is a great desert wine. There are spiced cherry wines, sparkling cherry wines, a cherry Reisling, and even cherry wine sangrias.

Chocolate Cherry Bread

Using local products is more than just practical for many businesses in the Traverse City area.  Many of the owners have very definite beliefs about food for health and pleasure. They use natural leavens only, liberating their breads from sugar and yeast, and bake the breads in a wood fired brick oven.  Gerard Grabowski and his wife are owners and bakers at Pleasanton Bakery.  They started selling their breads at the Farmers’ Market years ago and often have customers come in who remembered the Chocolate Cherry bread from a vacation in this area years ago.

Traverse City: 800-940-1120 or www.mytraversecity.com

Cherry Republic:  800-206-6949 or www.cherryrepublic.com

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        As a travel writer it is my responsibility to select the best places, events, and experiences to present to you. Most travel has been on my own though some has occurred on sponsored press trips. Travel listings here will be more informal than my published articles.

 

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