Editor's note: Road Trip is a monthly travel series by northern Michigan journalists Dave and Jeanne Barber. The series takes regional readers on easy, one-day road trips to visit Michigan museums, parks, nature sites, businesses and festivals, including many of the state's “hidden gems.”

Road Trip is a monthly travel series by northern Michigan journalists Dave and Jeanne Barber. The series takes regional readers on easy, one-day road trips to visit Michigan museums, parks, nature sites, businesses and festivals, including many of the state's “hidden gems.”

I changed my look last month. I started wearing a construction hard hat. Early one afternoon I carted a load of firewood down to Stone Circle. When I stepped out of my pickup, I heard a loud, screeching sound above my head.

Have you ever noticed that it’s really hard to change? There are a number of reasons for this — your brain gets hardwired, we like habits, we want to predict the future so we stick with what we know — but it’s actually far more simple than these answers given by neuroscience.

SUTTONS BAY — The sounds of ropes slapping the sails and waves splashing against the hull of the Inland Seas schooner were all that could be heard as a class of fourth-graders fell silent and pretended they were sailing in the 1800s.

On Saturday our family assisted daughter Elizabeth and Tim with their work. Church services will be held at their house next so lots of cleaning is getting done. A big tent will be set up for the services to be held under that day.

There is a wonderful Edward Lear poem, "The Table and the Chair," describing how a table convinces a chair to take a walk about town: “… I’ve as many legs as you, Why can’t we walk on two?”

We’re approaching the season of blockbuster movies and highly anticipated sequels. Over the next couple of months, we can look forward to cinemas around the world showing "Shaft," "Men in Black: International," "Toy Story 4," "Spider-Man: Far From Home" and "Fast & Furious: Hobbs & S…

SUTTONS BAY — Actor and comedian Tim Allen will introduce the fourth installment in Disney’s “Toy Story” series at 6 p.m. June 20 at the Bay Community Theatre. Allen has voiced space ranger Buzz Lightyear alongside Tom Hanks, who plays the cowboy Woody, since the first film about the secret …

Cosmic Knot frontman and guitarist Tom Wall exudes positivity, something that propels the Michigan band’s “unique song structures” and “blistering level of intensity” during its lengthy stage jams.

There's horror and then there's Horror. The movies with jump scares and gore and chainsaw-wielding murderers — that's horror with a little "h," stuff that can momentarily shock you or even forestall sleep. But capital-H Horror is a monster of a different color, one that burrows.

TRAVERSE CITY — Summer reading is often light — and mystery and romance authors are among those who will visit Traverse City this summer as part of the National Writers Series. But the beefed-up season lineup also includes authors whose books range in subject from national politics to human …

OLD MISSION — If it weren’t for Peter Dougherty traveling to northern Michigan to find collaboration between the Ottawa and Chippewa Indians in the late 1800s, Old Mission Peninsula might not have its name.

LANSING — The monarch butterfly might be on the decline, but a little milkweed-whacking can help get them back on their feet, experts say.

Ever lose a landing net overboard? I haven't, personally, but I know some who have and there's a neat product on the market to keep it from happening. The Ultra Float, from Luna Sea, is designed to fit over a net (or gaff) handle so if you lose it momentarily, you won't lose it permanently. …

BAY CITY — I do not remember a spring in which the weatherman has been so consistently wrong — as least for part of the day — as this one. Take, for instance, the other day, when the forecast called for winds of 5-10 mph with mostly cloudy skies, which is just about what the doctor ordered f…

Sometimes running makes me so happy. It can be one thing or a combination of things that triggers the mood: trees budding, flowers blooming, warm weather, a sunny day, no pain, feeling strong or gratitude to be able to move swiftly through the woods.

The large and smallmouth bass opener on Lake St. Clair, St. Clair River and the Detroit River is June 15. High water levels continue to hamper fishing on the Great Lakes, inland lakes as well as the rivers and streams. While visibility may be a factor, those putting in the time have caught fish.

Some people just try too hard to use “good” English, by which they mean a system of rules that establish lines that should not be crossed just like those indicated by speed limits. If you go faster than the posted limit, you are doing something wrong. Similarly, if you utter a word or phrase…

TRAVERSE CITY — Answer: Grace Community Birth Center, a Traverse City nonprofit working to construct a birth center in Grand Bassin, Haiti.

BENZONIA — Ned Edwards has called Beulah home for almost 30 years now. But even before moving to the area in the 1990s, Edwards, 85, summered in northern Michigan for decades. Though he attended college and divinity school elsewhere, he and his wife retired to the area.

TRAVERSE CITY — A once bare corner at Division and Randolph streets touts a summer array of color — trucks in red, yellow, blue and pink pepper lots on both sides of the street.

Spring, summer and early fall, for the past decade, I have been happiest on Fridays. I work all day on my feet, without high-tech tools, don’t get paid (in cash) and come home spent and exhausted.

When Kalamazoo-bred Greensky Bluegrass, Traverse City’s Joshua Davis and other stars gather for the second annual Camp Greensky Music Festival this weekend outside Wellston in the Manistee National Forest, fans can expect to hear some songs written by Aaron Allen.

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