Mackinac’s 63rd annual Lilac Festival is going on right this very minute, June 8-17th, so I thought I’d let you know, just in case you want to make it in time for the Epona and Barkus Dog Parade down the boardwalk, the Patrick Sinclair Scottish Tattoo up on the ramparts of Fort Mackinac, or the fabulousLilac Festival Grand Parade this coming Sunday afternoon…etc. etc.!Alan and I usually go the first weekend in June to celebrate his birthday. In fact,this year marks the 45th anniversary of our first bike ride around the island together as well as Alan’s 62nd birthday and Joel’s 21st birthday, so we had a lot to celebrate! And, you can see why the island seems a little magical to us. 🙂Even the trip over to the island is a treat! During the 20-minute high speed boat ride (consider taking a light sweater, sun screen, and maybe even a sun hat), youhave great views of the Mackinac Bridge, boats, the straits, the Grand Hotel,the lighthouse, and the island’s very picturesque waterfront. For any of you who haven’t heard, there are no cars allowed on this Victorian Era island, so you ride in a carriage,walk everywhere, or ride (and can easily rent) bikes. Although we often walk around the island, Alan and I always take a spin around first thing on a bicycle built for two, although our kids usually prefer riding single bikes. There’s a greatpaved, 8-mile coastal road edged with wildflowers and overhung with trees tomake the ride especially pleasant. There are vistas of the Mackinac Bridge andplaces to stop and design your own cairn out of white rocks or just enjoy wadingin the clear turquoise waters where Lakes Michigan and Huron meet. There are distinctive geological formations in the limestone cliffs, like Skull Caveand Arch Rock, and there are always some memorable scenes like families playing together,swimming together,and rejoicing in God’s goodness together. It’s definitely a family-friendly place!There are many lovely accommodations on the island; we’ve stayed at this oneand this one…but usually (like last weekend), we stay in Mackinaw City and justcome over for the day (which saves us a considerable amount of money). 🙂You can pack a picnic, but in the last few years we’ve been spending the money we saved on yummy food. Our favorite restaurant is the Village Inn, but choosingwhere to get our fudge is a more difficult decision! But, be sure to save a little for dessert and a little time for browsing through all the lovely gift and clothing storesand galleries.And, if you’re like me…be sure to take time toenjoy all the beautiful spring flowers…especially the fragrant lilacs!
“My beloved spake, and said unto me, ‘Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away. For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come'” (Song of Solomon 2: 10-12).