Destination Bellaire

Paddle Antrim Awards $3,000 in Ripple Effect Grants

By paddleantrim on December 20, 2016 in Blog, Press Release

Paddle Antrim announced it will award $3,000 to three projects that benefit Northern Michigan’s Chain of Lakes region through education, water resources protection, and increasing access to the water.

“We are so excited to support a second round of great projects this year. Our Ripple Effect grant program provides a wonderful way for us to expand our impact by funding projects that support our mission of protecting our waterways and connecting people to these amazing waters through paddling” says Deana Jerdee, Paddle Antrim’s Executive Director. The awards are for the following projects:

Three Lakes Association, in coordination with Grass River Natural Area, was awarded $800 to install signage on Grass River which explains the large woody debris project. This demonstration project, implemented by a collaboration of entities, was designed to study whether log structures can improve aquatic habitat in a river with heavy sediment and improve channel navigability by deepening portions of a channel.
Milton Township was awarded $1,600 to add kayak racks and a sidewalk connector to their kayak launch at Milton Township Waterfront Park in Kewadin. This will be the first universal access kayak launch on the Chain of Lakes and is slated to be installed in the spring of 2017.
The Village of Elk Rapids was awarded $600 toward upgrading the wind screen shades at the Rotary Park Pavilion. This pavilion is adjacent to the existing kayak launch on the Elk River and hosts a wonderful display “Because of Water” which explains the history of water in the region.

“The large woody debris project is a great example of many organizations in the region collaborating on improving our lakes and rivers and we are happy to play a part,” says Jerdee.  “Both the Milton Township and Elk Rapids projects are helping improve access sites for paddlers, which is important as we develop our region into a premier destination for paddlers.”

Paddle Antrim’s Ripple Effect Mini-Grant Program awards grant to local non-profit and governmental organizations whose projects align with their mission to protect the water resources and enhance the economic vitality of the region through stewardship, education, improved water trail access and promotion of the waterways.  The next round of funding will be in May 2017.  To learn more about the large woody debris project, visit To learn more about Paddle Antrim, the Ripple Effect grant program or the Chain of Lakes Water Trail, please visit



Bellaire, MI – 05/27/16– Bellaire's Grand Victorian today announced that it has received a TripAdvisor® Certificate of Excellence. Now in its sixth year, the achievement celebrates hospitality businesses that have earned great traveler reviews on TripAdvisor over the past year. Certificate of Excellence recipients include accommodations, eateries and attractions located all over the world that have continually delivered a quality customer experience. "With the Certificate of Excellence, TripAdvisor honors hospitality businesses that have consistently received strong praise and ratings from travelers,” said Heather Leisman, Vice President of Industry Marketing, TripAdvisor. “This recognition helps travelers identify and book properties that regularly deliver great service. TripAdvisor is proud to play this integral role in helping travelers feel more confident in their booking decisions.” The Certificate of Excellence accounts for the quality, quantity and recency of reviews submitted by travelers on TripAdvisor over a 12-month period. To qualify, a business must maintain an overall TripAdvisor bubble rating of at least four out of five, have a minimum number of reviews and must have been listed on TripAdvisor for at least 12 months.

Northern Michigan Cideries take home medals at the 11th Annual Great Lakes International Cider and P


A number of Northern Michigan cideries and wineries were awarded medals at the 11th Annual Great Lakes International Cider and Perry Competition (GLINTCAP), held on April 23-24 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  The world's largest cider competition, GLINTCAP gathers cider aficionados from the United States, Canada, and England, for a blind, panel judging of cider and perry varieties from around the world. This year, of an unprecedented 1,000+ entries, 764 medals were awarded for both commercial and non-commercial cider entries.  “Entries this year came from 31 US states and the District of Columbia, 5 provinces of Canada, 5 counties of the United Kingdom, and several other nations including France, Spain, Ireland, and the Czech Republic,” (

Bryan Ulbrich, owner and “Winery Sherpa” at Left Foot Charley, says, “GLINTCAP is a well managed competition where the judges spend over 10 minutes analyzing each sample. Earning any medal at GLINTCAP has proven to be quite difficult, as the largest cider competition in the world. The best part of GLINTCAP is that as an entrant I receive the judges’ notes directly.”

Bee Well Mead & Cider, from Bellaire, were among the thirty-one Michigan cideries to medal, and just 1 of 5 Michigan cideries to bring home a Gold Medal.  First year entrants, Bee Well were also pleased to hear of their reception of silver and bronze medals for their additional cider entries. “The gold was exciting news, but we were as stoked that our newest Family Tree cider placed with silver.  That was a community project of so many families' apples.  It well-represents what we love to do, and we're excited to release that.”


Starcut Ciders, also of Antrim County, were among those awarded both silver and bronze medals in a variety of categories.  Tony Hansen, of Starcut Ciders, shares that he was “happy to see each of the Erraticus series #1-4 earn medals. I feel like they are Starcut Cider's secret project that most people don't know about yet."

Other local cideries of the Grand Traverse and surrounding areas include 45 North of Lake Leelanau, Bel Lago Winery of Cedar, Big Belly Ciderworks of Empire, Big Little Wines, L. Mawby and Tandem Ciders of Suttons Bay, Black Star Farms and Left Foot Charley of Traverse City, Northern Naturals of Kaleva, and St. Ambrose of Beulah, Michigan. Congratulations to all of our local medalists.  For more information about GLINTCAP, visit

Northern Lakes Financial Services, Launches Craig Wealth Advisors


Traverse City, February 1, 2016 – Northern Lakes Financial Services with offices in Alden and Traverse City, has launched a new name and new brand, Craig Wealth Advisors. Craig Wealth Advisors is an independent firm with securities offered through Raymond James Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC

Debbie Craig, CFP®, MBA, CRPS® is the firm’s Branch Manager and has been helping individuals and business owners for over 16 years with creative solutions to invest and manage her clients wealth. Craig offers personalized financial plans which include; proper asset allocation, estate and wealth planning, asset management, college planning, and retirement planning.

“We are excited to take this next step with the rebranding and renaming of our firm,” states Craig. “It reflects the integrity and professionalism in which we assist our clients with wealth management.  That will never change.”

Prior to being a financial advisor with Raymond James, Craig worked at Smith Barney as a second Vice President, Wealth Management and for General Motors as the Capital Management Director for Oldsmobile. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Kalamazoo College and a Masters of Business Administration from Northwestern University.

A new website has also been launched providing more details of the services that are offered by Craig Wealth Advisors. For more information please visit or call 231-331-5500. Our offices are located at 733 E. Eighth Street, Suite 102, Traverse City and 10709 Coy Street, Alden Michigan, 49612.

ISLAND is now Crosshatch Center for Art & Ecology


Dear Hatchers [Hatchies? Crossies? We're workin' on it, we'll come up with something good, we promise] :
Eleven years ago we started a nonprofit and we called it the Institute for Sustainable Living, Art & Natural Design, or ISLAND. We thought it was pretty good – who doesn’t love a good acronym? But over the past decade and then some, we’ve grown – our island turned into a cluster of islands; we are no longer a rock, an iiiisssland, we’re a whole damn community of farmers, artists, gardeners, learners, lovers, eaters, growers, doers, movers and shakers. And so we’re changing our name. We’re departing the island (but it’ll always have a special place in our hearts).

We shall henceforth be known as: Crosshatch Center for Art & Ecology. We remain a small, all-hands-on-deck, passionate organization that focuses its efforts on strengthening communities through the intersections of art, farming, ecology, and economy.

The first lifecycle of ISLAND required a lot of experimenting and learning from trial and error. And it was fun! But Crosshatch is a tween now, we’re old enough to know what we’re doing and where we’re going: Phase Three.

Phase three will be the development of the Crosshatch property located in Bellaire, Michigan. While Crosshatch currently is, and always has been, a “homeless” organization, the property will someday be the location of a working farm, multiple artist spaces for residents, a community building, and more. The Crosshatch property will materialize our longstanding concept of integrating art with farming and ecology: Where Art meets Earth.

TL;DR: We used to be called the Institute for Sustainable Living, Art & Natural Design, but now we’re called Crosshatch Center for Art & Ecology. We continue to dig in, dive deep, get up early and stay up late in the name of creating stronger communities through the magic of art, farming, food, ecology, economy, working together and having fun. We are trying our best and we love you.

Bellaire, MI named #1 in Flip Key’s “50 States: Most Affordable Vacation Rental Destinations”

Photo by Jamie Creason, Applesauce Inn Bed & Breakfast, a TripAdvisor company recently announced their “50 States: Most Affordable Vacation Rental Destinations” list and Bellaire has been recognized as #1 in the state of Michigan. researched the most bang-for-your-buck vacation rental getaway locations across the country. They choose these destinations based on data collected over the past 18 months pointing to those locations with at least 5 listings that also had the lowest average weekly rates for a 2-bedroom accommodation.

Bellaire was listed as having an average rental of $600 per week, stating three reasons to visit: Kayak or boat the Chain-O-Lakes, hike the trails at Grass River Natural Area, Fat Tire Biking or Snowshoeing at Glacial Hills Pathway.

The Village of Bellaire, surrounded by glacier-carved hills and steep valleys certainly fits this description by It is centrally located on the chain of lakes, connecting 75 miles of waterway. Several of the larger ones, like Torch Lake and Elk Lake are considered among the most beautiful in the world, and the region has long been a favorite destination for boaters and fisherman. 

After a day on the trail or out on the boat, feast at a variety of family friendly restaurants and unique lounges; grab a glass of locally produced beer, mead or wine; or visit area farm markets and u-picks to take home a taste Northern Michigan. The peaceful Intermediate River runs through downtown Bellaire, with unique shops and a state-of-the-art movie theater. Stay at one of the numerous cottages, resorts, bed & breakfasts, campgrounds, and motels to retreat to after a full day of exploring the area. 

For more information:


HOMES: Tied by Water - Circling the Great Lakes through an Artist's Lens


Bellaire - Join a diverse gathering of local artists and be a part of a roving interdisciplinary project as it weaves our part of the Great Lakes into a new conception of this region. ISLAND’s Artist Meet & Greet with Moheb Soliman's Great Lakes Work will take place from 5:00pm to 7:00pm pm at Blackbird Arts, 1485 Barlow St in Traverse City. Performance-Lecture starts at 6:15pm. 

HOMES: Tied by Water is a work‐in‐progress that has this poet, performance artist and Joyce Foundation Fellow, Moheb Soliman, tracing the entire Great Lakes coastline by land for four months this summer. ISLAND and Blackbird Arts will host him locally for a special event sharing his creative work and inviting others to contribute to it. Moheb will give a short performance using a mock talk format, where the subjective stands in for the objective in overlays of images, language, and gesture. He'll also have a low-fi installation using an old overhead projector and camping tent, which visitors can interact with and contribute their own "memory maps" of the lakes to his project. Moheb hopes for a dialogue and creative exchange with our locality in exploring the place of nature in modernity and identity, the differing narratives of belonging in the region, and the extent to which the wild, populous Great Lakes borderland has a coherent culture rooted in its geography.

"The stories and sheer beauty of this precious fresh water source anchor us in places along the shoreline, giving a sense of pride, and connecting us in integral ways,” says ISLAND's Jen Schaap. “This aspect of the Great Lakes is being explored by former ISLAND Hill House artist resident Moheb Soliman, and we are excited for him to include local artists and residents in his unconventional approach to telling the story of the place we call home."

Also on Aug 26, 27, and 28, Moheb invites anyone interested to join him on local excursions and help with creative protocols he's enacting all around the Great Lakes feel out a stretch of the lakeshore through inhabiting a favorite place, taking a walk in water, capturing a conversation or interaction through audio/video, "tidings" - an on‐going performance/installation piece where natural and cultural materials and excess from other Great Lakes locations "wash up" here temporarily, "a poem of sublime proportion" - an on‐going epic poem being written into/erased by the entire Great Lakes shoreline, and others. His goal is to connect with diverse people and places here. Contact Moheb at to participate, or to show him someplace important, secret, or special to you in this corner of the region.

To RSVP to the Artist Meet & Greet, or learn more about ISLAND contact Jen Schaap at 231-622-5252 or visit Supported by the Joyce Foundation and Mizna. More information on Moheb Soliman’s project:

ISLAND is a NW Lower Michigan non-profit based in Bellaire,MI that builds strong communities through the intersections of art, farming, ecology and economy.


Jen Schaap
Food and Farm Programs Coordinator
Institute for Sustainable Living, Art & Natural Design (ISLAND)
mobile: 616-856-1163

Beaches Near Bellaire, Michigan

by Laura Rico, Demand Media

Bellaire is a village in a scenic region of Michigan's northwest Lower Peninsula. It's near several inland lakes and Grand Traverse Bay off of Lake Michigan. The Intermediate River slices through town, providing Bellaire's only small beach area. The village's largest draw for tourists is the Shanty Creek ski and golf resort and eclectic shops and eateries. There are a number of larger beaches within 30 miles of Bellaire.


Bellaire Featured on


Find more great news about Bellaire at, the online home of Traverse Magazine.

May Stories

FootGolf in Northern Michigan

Bellaire Nominated as “America’s Best Town” by Outside Magazine


Shanty Creek’s “The Legend” Awarded 2014 Course of the Year

Bellaire Farmers Market


For those of you that may not know, Area Seniors, Inc. has obtained management of the "Antrim County Farmer's Market" which is now the BELLAIRE FARMERS MARKET.  Our committee met yesterday and are excited about the upcoming season!  We're having a start-up/vendor meeting on Tuesday, March 31st at 10 a.m.
If you are a vendor or know someone that is a vendor that is not currently involved in our market, please share the meeting date and time as we're accepting new vendor applications now and throughout the year!  2015 Rental fees remain unchanged: $10 per day or $125 for the season.
Thanks to Doug Bedell for agreeing to continue on in 2015 as the opening representative.  Vendors should check in with Doug by 7:30 a.m. at the latest, each Friday.  Vendor space that is not set up or confirmed with Doug will be released to other day or season vendors.
Area Seniors, Inc. Board Of Directors has assigned the position of "Market Manager" to me, so all questions should be directed to me at the office at (231) 350-8835.  I will be accepting vendor applications, inquiries, and fees commencing the meeting next Tuesday.
Please go to facebook and "LIKE" our market page:     Many thanks to Renee and Matt for keeping the page up and going, and to all others that have supported the site with pictures and comments.
We are looking forward to an exciting and busy summer at Area Seniors, Inc. Yard Sale and Bellaire Farmers Market!  Opening Day: Friday, May 22nd continuing through the month of October.

Fun Things To Do In Michigan

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If you’re from one of these villages, townships, or cities in Michigan, you might dread the small talk obligation of answering where you’re from. Read More...

Festivals in Bellaire, Michigan

by Sally Barber, Demand Media

The tiny community of Bellaire, Michigan, marks seasons with creative community festivals year after year. Villagers bring together family, friends, neighbors and guests to celebrate the gifts of the season, resulting in this northwest Michigan village of roughly 1,000 swelling with visitors eager to join the fun. Its signature celebrations demonstrate Bellaire’s knack for engaging all ages in activities, mixing traditional events with a touch of whimsy and connecting with the natural beauty surrounding the town.


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