Intern Blog

Maeve Madden Blog ​​​7.31.20

Favorite Hikes Around Frankfort

This week marked my sixth week here in Frankfort. As the temperatures cooled down a bit this week, I was able to go for some great hikes with spectacular views. Today I will be sharing some of my favorite trails that I have enjoyed hiking throughout the years.

1. The Old Indian Trail

○ This trail has two loops around 2.5 miles long, and the end of the trail brings you to a beautiful beach. The Old Indian Trail is one of my favorite trails because of the great views it has to offer, and the beach that allows for a dip in Lake Michigan. With it being just a 15-minute drive from downtown Frankfort, you can make the Indian Trail a quick morning hike, or a whole beach day.

○ More Information here: https://www.nps.gov/slbe/planyourvisit/trailoldindian.htm

2. Old Baldy Trail

○ This trail is located on Arcadia Dunes just 20 minutes south of downtown Frankfort. Although the trail is only 1.8 miles long, several paths go off the trail that can allow for you to get more steps in for the day. The trail has two different viewing spots at the end of the loop, that allow you to rest on a bench or to sit in the sand and enjoy the view of Arcadia Dune.

○ More Information here: https://www.michigan.org/property/arcadia-dunes-old-baldy-trail

3. Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail

○ This trail is located in Sleeping Bear National Park, just about 30 minutes north of downtown Frankfort. Most of the trail is paved, and has spectacular views of the woods around Sleeping Bear. The trail has many stops, so you can pick how long you want your hike to last. The trail ends at Glen Arbor, and has many stops along the way to get water, use the restroom etc.

○ More information here: https://www.nps.gov/slbe/planyourvisit/sbht.htm

All of these hikes are a great way to explore nature and discover the beauty in the areas surrounding us in Frankfort. I hope that if you do these hikes, you enjoy them as much as I do!

Maeve

Maeve Madden Blog 7.24.20

Best Picnic Spots in the Frankfort Area                  

As many of you know, the CDC stated earlier this summer that the rate of transmission for COVID-19 is much lower when in the outdoors as opposed to spaces indoors. Because of this, I’ve made a habit of taking food to-go for a picnic, to help lower my exposure to the virus. This week, I will share with you my favorite picnic spots around Frankfort, and the views you’ll see at each spot!

  1. Elberta Lookout

lookoutThe picnic table just off Bye Street is my favorite view of Betsie Bay. To get there, you drive like you are going to Elberta lookout (right behind the old Trick Dog cafe), and pull off to the right. The picnic spot is a hidden gem, and I rarely have to wait for the picnic table to be available. From there, you can see all of Downtown Frankfort, and you will see all the different boats coming in and leaving Betsie Bay.

 

2. CSA’s Crystal Knoll

knollThe lookout point just behind the Assembly has my favorite view of Crystal Lake. I have been coming to this spot for as long as I can remember. Last summer, the CSA groundskeepers did a great job of power-washing the Knoll, and there is a lovely stone ground where moss used to be. There are several benches to relax on, and if you’re lucky, you can even see a bird’s eye view of a tennis match on the CSA’s Crystal beach courts.

 

3. The Public Tables on Betsie Bay in Downtown Frankfort

bayBehind the Frankfort shops along Betsie Bay, is a series of outdoor public tables. These tables sit along a row of boats and make for a great view of the different ships docked there. My friends and I often frequent this spot and bring breakfast sandwiches from L’Chayim or Crescent Bakery to enjoy and sit there.

Frankfort and its surrounding areas have so many great views to offer, and a picnic is a great way to enjoy a meal out, while limiting exposure to COVID-19. I hope that if you try out these picnic spots, you enjoy the views as much as I do!

Maeve Madden Blog 7.3.20

Rainy Day Traditions

This week began my second full week at the CSA this summer. The week started with three rainy days. Rainy days up here can quite literally lead to cabin fever. It can be frustrating not being able to do your favorite activities and enjoy the beauty around us. However, rainy days have led to some fun traditions that my friends and I have started. One of our favorite things that we’ve done in summers past, is gotten together on rainy days and collectively worked on our summer reading for school together. It was so hard to get ourselves to focus on warm days when we could be out playing on the field, or swimming out to the second raft. This forced us to hunker down together and get our work done.

Another rainy-day tradition I cherish up here is “drive-in movies” at the Frankfort A&W. When I was younger, my mom drove a gold Chevy minivan that had a VCR player TV. During days where it rained, we would go get lunch at A&W and watch a movie. Even though we were still cooped up looking at a screen, it was nice to get a change of scenery and cozy up with blankets in the car. 

Although it sometimes takes some creativity to have fun up here when it rains, rainy days Up North allow for us to hunker down and spend time with those that we love.  Afterall, for every rainy day up here, there are often several days of sunshine, swimming, and beach days to follow.

Maeve Madden Blog 7.10.20

A Pandemic Fourth Up North
 
         It’s hard to believe this week marks my third here at the CSA this summer, though of course every year June and July manage to fly by. On Saturday we celebrated the Fourth of July. In the week leading up to it my family and I brainstormed what we should do in lieu of the parade and fireworks. The Fourth has always been my favorite holiday because I get to spend it in Michigan with all of my summer friends who I adore so much.  
        When I first heard the news back in May that Frankfort decided to cancel all Fourth of July events, I knew that it was the responsible thing to do, but couldn’t help feeling sad about all of the fun traditions that we were going to have to sacrifice this year. However, Saturday proved to me that it is possible to socially distance while still celebrating holidays.
         The morning started off with the boat parade on Crystal Lake that showcased old wooden boats. My family was able to walk down to the CSA beach and watch the parade, without having to park our car and navigate crowds. At night, after eating barbecue outside with family and friends, we went down to the CSA Crystal beach and saw a spectacular fireworks show over the lake that was done privately for the whole lake to view.​
         These two events not only gave me a Fourth to remember but it reminded me of the great community we have on Crystal Lake and Benzie county. Although our original Fourth of July traditions weren’t able to happen this year, people used their time, creativity and money to make socially distanced- friendly events for everyone to enjoy. Because of this, I will look back at the pandemic Fourth with fond memories. However, I also look forward to resuming the traditional parade and downtown fireworks show in years to come.

Maeve Madden Blog 6.26.20

I am Maeve Madden and I’m currently volunteering as the CSA summer Communications intern. I bet we can all agree the summer of 2020 will certainly be one none of us will forget. Because this season looks very different from years past, I will write this blog to show CSA updates, and what life “Up North” is like during Covid-19. This will also serve as something of an archive of life here that further generations can access and ponder.

I arrived at the CSA just over a week ago. Since then I have been pleasantly surprised on how much of my life up here has been able to remain the same. Many activities I do including sailing, kayaking, walking and hiking are all very possible to do while socially distancing. As opposed to crowded city trails at home in Kansas City, MO, wooded roads like Thomas Road allow for walks where you don’t have to come in close contact with others. This has allowed me to be a lot more active than I am at home, and it feels great to be outside all the time after being cooped up all of quarantine.

Another pleasant surprise I’ve had is the use and enforcement of masks in downtown Frankfort. Back home the use of masks was encouraged, but hardly enforced. I have seen multiple people not wearing masks be asked to get one and put them on at businesses like Stormcloud and Anet & Ollie’s Five and Dime. The use of masks around town gives me hope that Frankfort won’t become a pandemic hotspot, as we have seen many vacation towns in Florida become.

Overall, I feel the CSA is a great place to practice social distancing, and I think we can all work together to enjoy our summer while still remaining conscious of the pandemic. Although there may be many things cancelled such as the 4th of July parade, staying home to stop the spread of COVID-19 will allow for future summers where we can safely crowd Frankfort again to carry on our beloved traditions.