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Iron Mountain/Kingsford


It's hard to tell the two towns apart except for when the high school sports team play each other, but Iron Mountain and Kingsford have storied histories intertwined with the success of the Upper Peninsula. Kingsford Charcoal was founded there when Henry Ford and his relative E.G. Kingsford began selling the byproduct of the Model T plant. In addition, Iron Mountain is the birth place of the U.P.-wide Pine Mountain Music Festival. The Menominee River, which flows nearby, is home to what is considered the most challenging whitewater rafting in the Midwest. 
Char's Cafe in Bruce Crossing.

Char's Cafe offers good eats in Bruce Crossing

Sometimes, when a place has one of those old "EAT" signs, it's a sign you shouldn't. That is happily not the case at Char's Cafe in Bruce Crossing, which reviewer Small Town Girl Foodie World says is actually awesome.

Sarah LeSage

What We've Lost: The community impact of invasive species

Invasive species are costly to Michigan cities and their residents, negatively affecting everyone's quality of life. Here's a look at what we've lost to invasive species and how we can prevent future invasives from causing similar damage.

Manufactured home communities also sometimes offer old-fashioned neighborhood amenities.

The return of the pre-fab home

Millennials looking to buy their first homes and Boomers looking to downsize find factory-built or manufactured housing to be a good alternative that offers affordable, sturdy and green living. 

Great Lakes Coffee in Detroit.

The next level of being a localist: 3 ways to up your local game

Do you believe in the power of small business to restore community? If so, you might be a localist. Here are three simple suggestions for how to contribute to the localist movement in a meaningful, holistic way.

Bill Sterrett stands in a portion of maintained state forest land.  It was clear cut around 35 years ago and has grown back.

All about the (real) green: How forestry is about community impact, not financial

Think that recently clear cut forest in your community is a darn shame? It might not look lovely, but the forest management practice is crucial to healthy trees, wildlife and communities in Northern Michigan. 

The Honoring Our Children program focuses on young children.

In the U.P's Native American communities, early childhood education is getting a big boost

With an $800,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the Inter-Tribal Council of Michigan is making sustainable investments in early childhood development and education throughout the U.P.'s Native American communities.

The Mighty Mac -- a great part of any beautiful drive.

Day tripping from all corners of the Upper Peninsula

The Upper Peninsula has so many places to see and things to do that the options for day trips are pretty much endless. But here are a few ideas for day trips no matter what part of the U.P. you happen to call home.


Pathways to Success co-principal Tyrone Weeks.

Is starting college during high school Michigan's ticket to success?

Imagine a future where every Michigan student not only went to college, but started that collegiate career before they even left high school. For some students, it's already happening, and it could have big implications for education in our state.

Tahquamenon Falls

Does the U.P. need to rebrand to compete for business and tourism?

Yoopers know what makes the U.P. special, but the region's story isn't always told with a cohesive voice. Some think that calls for a U.P.-wide rebranding effort and a more ambitious drive to attract businesses and tourists from across the country and world.
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