Small Town Offers Big Fun
If you are wondering when to schedule your Paddling Michigan vacation, the 4th of July is a great time to visit Munising. Along with the kayaking experience of a lifetime, there will be plenty to do. The quaint town that boasts Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore pulls out all the stops to celebrate this national holiday.
The Independence Day festivities start early and happen all day at Bayshore Park, right on the shores of Lake Superior. A Fun Run kicks off the events, followed by a veteran-led morning flag raising. The park will be filled with food and beer vendors, games of chance, and music from local entertainers for non-stop fun.
One of the most popular games is Chicken Poop Bingo. Yes, Chicken Poop Bingo. This one usually draws a large crowd. Everyone cheers for a chicken walking around an oversized bingo card. If he poops on your number, you’re a winner!
If you prefer a little competition over games of luck, consider signing up for one of the various contests that await. There’s watermelon eating, grease pole climbing, egg tossing, and the ever popular water fight by the Munising Fire Department. The kids usually wear their bathing suits to the last one, so consider yourself warned.
4th of July Parade
The 4th of July parade begins at midday, and the route is right through downtown Munising. Make sure to bring a reusable bag for the kids to collect the candy that is thrown by the handfuls from parade participants. It’s so much easier than Halloween!
You’ll appreciate the hometown pride shown in the spit-polished fire trucks rolling by, horns blasting. And you may get to see the ladies home for their 25th high school reunion decked out in the prom dresses their mom kept for all these years. Finally there’s the Pet Parade later in the afternoon, with the animals dressed in their best red, white, and blue patriotic outfits.
Fireworks on Munising Bay
The sun sets in Munising a half hour later than it does in other midwestern cities like Detroit, so be prepared to enjoy a long day with plenty of water and sunscreen. The temperature can drop 10 degrees or more once the sun goes down, so having a sweatshirt and a blanket for the fireworks display is a good idea.
The fireworks are generally scheduled to begin a half hour after sunset, but don’t be impatient if the organizers wait just a little longer until it’s good and dark. It’ll be worth the wait when the Star Spangled Banner begins to play. You’ll be mesmerized by the high flying fireworks reflecting below on Lake Superior while listening to the booms echo off the low hills of Munising Bay.
If you’ve chosen to stay at Paddlers Village while visiting Munising, you can keep the celebration going a little while longer, enjoying a fire and some star gazing before you retreat to your yurt or platform tent. If it’s been awhile since you’ve celebrated The 4th of July in a small town, why not make this your year? A stay in Munising will have you flag-waving all the way home.