#10: The Gathering, 2008, Part 1

It was a glorious day to maintain our section of trail. This is the Highbanks section of trail that runs between 13 Mile and 16 Mile roads in Newago County about 6.3 miles of North Country Trail. The section rolls through a passing of Manistee National Forest passing by several lakes over its length, along ridge lines, and a few slightly wetter areas. It is one of the prettier section of trail and over the past few years we have whipped into shape. We all maintain the new Highbanks Campground connector trail which we had a hand in scouting and building earlier this year. To do proper trail maintenance you really need to come out three times a year, more if the trail warrants it. Autumn is an ideal time for us because we can roll our trail maintenance into the long weekend before firearms deer hunting season opens when the Great Lakes Hikes hiking group plus a few friends from outside of the group, who are always welcome to come, hold our annual Schoolhouse Gathering. This year would be our tenth such gathering at the Western Michigan Chapter Schoolhouse.

Over the next few hours we would scurry down the rest of our segment of trail, 6.8 miles of trail in all, touching up a blaze or two, removing a couple downed trees, and doing some minimal pruning. It was the fastest trail work day I think we have ever had We were walking back along the forest road that parallels the trail just to the west by mid-afternoon. The sun was still a bit above the horizon when we returned to John's car and drove to the Schoolhouse to join our fellow GLHer for the tenth annual Gathering.

The Gathering is held at the old Schoolhouse near White Cloud, Michigan. The Schoolhouse, run by the Western Michigan North Country Trail Chapter, has served us well over the years and even though we were expecting iffy weather we knew this would be another fine Gathering. In part two join me and my friends as we celebrate fall in Michigan inside and out.

Sites Of Interest

North Country Trail Assoication - www.northcountrytrail.org

Special Note: An enhanced version, that is a version with embedded photos, of this episode is here.

Direct download: 10_glh_gathering_2008_part_1.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:49pm EDT

#9: Wheatland Music Festival, 2008

On the second weekend of September for the past 35 years their has been a music festival held near the town of Remus, Michigan. The Wheatland Music Festival is an exciting varied event that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. I've been a couple of times, still a newbie compared to some people I know who have been dozens of times. I've plenty to still see and learn but that will have to wait for the 36th festival next September.

One thing that makes Wheatland Music Festival special is that they feature a broad array of musical styles. They also tap into things associated with music, most notably, as with the group you hear in the background—Sole Impact—dance.

Their is a lot that goes on at Wheatland. You have the Main Stage, Centennial Stage, and the Dance Stage which represent the big three. Then you have the massive Kids Hill area plus a stage for kids shows, workshop stages, an Open Stage pavilion, and this only covers the "official" music scene. People run drum circles and jam sessions all over the place. You have the artisans marketplace featuring arts and crafts of all sorts to explore as well.

Throughout the podcast you've heard music from some of the performers. Music heard includes the Pine Leaf Boys, Sole Impact, Crooked Still, The Refugees, Bichini Bia Congo Dance Theater Company, David Honeyboy Edwards, Tom Graves and Cherokee, and the Cherryhomes Family. A complete list of the performers on the Main Stage, which doesn't represent everyone who performed at Wheatland, can be found in the show notes. You can learn more about the festival itself as well as the many other activities the Wheatland Music Organization does at the Wheatland Music Organization website.

Main Stage Performers

Friday
Pine Leaf Boys, Tim Graves and Cherokee, David 'Honeyboy' Edwards, Sole Impact, The Freight Hoppers, Slide (Ireland)

Saturday
Tim Graves and Cherokee, Tarbox Ramblers, Pine Leaf Boys, The Chicken Chokers, David 'Honeyboy' Edwards, Slide, Dale Watson, Cheryl Wheeler, Bichini Bia Congo Dance Theater Company, The Refugees, Crooked Still

Sunday
Gospel Sing, The Refugees, Dale Watson, Cheryl Wheeler, The Chicken Chokers, Crooked Still, Sole Impact, The Cherryholmes Family

Sites of Interest

www.wheatlandmusic.org (Whatland Music Organization)

Direct download: 9_Wheatland_Music_Festival_2008.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:05pm EDT

#8: An Autumn Clasic-Corn Maze Visit

Our group is out this blustery late October day celebrating a birthday of a friend. He's passing a prime number, the last one before he turns 40 a few years from now. He came up with the idea to visit the corn maze at Talladay Farms and a handful of his friends including myself were able to come out and join the fun.

One of the joys of the fall season, even on a windy and hence somewhat nippy, about 50 degrees before the wind chill, day is being able to sit down with friends over freshly made doughnuts with cups of fresh hot spiced cider. Wasem Fruit Farm is just a hot, skip, and a jump from the corn maze at Talladay Farms and we thoroughly enjoyed our afternoon repast.

Sites of Interest

Talladay Farms
Wasem Fruit Farm

Direct download: 8_Walking_A_Corn_Maze.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:37pm EDT


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