The new year is coming and 2020 really did a number on us all, so it is time to be excited (or maybe cautiously optimistic) about 2021!
Whether you are a local or a tourist, a bucket list is a great way to explore your own backyard and Michigan treasures. As the official Sanctuary of the Great Lakes, Alpena is particularly full of treasures; you just need to know where to look. So if you are in Alpena all year round, or just for a short time, here is the 2021 bucket list for you:
- Go snowshoeing through Norway Ridge Trails.
- Try out winter camping; make sure you have the proper gear – this is very important.
- Grab a friend and go cross country skiing through the N.E.S.T trails.
- Take biking to the next level with fat tire biking through the trails at Rockport State Recreation Area.
- Bundle up and go ice fishing on Grand Lake, Long Lake, or Hubbard Lake.
- Go ice skating at Northern Lights Arena. (Covid-19 restrictions, call ahead)
- Not into the cold weather? Check out the Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center inside of the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary or the Besser Museum for Northeast Michigan to learn more about our Sanctuary of the Great Lakes! (Covid-19 restrictions, call ahead)
- Go kayaking in the Thunder Bay River.
- Eat local. Start shopping at the Alpena Farmer’s Market every Saturday morning.
- Watch the sunrise over Lake Huron from the Blair St. Pier beach.
- Take a walk over the covered bridge which connects Duck Park to Island Park. Stroll through the groomed trails of Island Park and watch as nature comes back to life.
- Spring ride or walk through the Besser Natural Area. For a real adventure, take a bike ride through Chippewa Hills Pathway.
- Book a bass fishing trip with Alpena Bass Outfitters.
- What’s SUP? Try out stand up paddleboarding in the Lake Huron bay of Mich-e-ki-wis.
- Build a sandcastle at Starlite Beach.
- Join a slow ride (organized group pedal bike riding through the town), contact Harborside Cycle & Sport for group rides.
- Attend a concert in the park sponsored by True North Radio Network.
- Take a glass-bottom boat ride on the Lady Michigan with Alpena Shipwreck Tours. (Covid-19 restrictions, call ahead)
- Dive a shipwreck! Contact Nick Myers at Great Lakes Divers for gear or any other diving related questions.
- Go on a day to night adventure at Rockport State Recreation Area; fossil hunting by day, stargazing by night.
- Stand under the water bucket when it tips at the Splash Park at Starlite Beach.
- Take a walk through the fall foliage.
- Go for a color drive; one of the best routes for fall colors is in Presque Isle on the way to the Old and New Presque Isle Lighthouses.
- Go for a ride through the trails on horseback with Rose Creek Adventures.
- Visit the Sinkholes. Obey all the rules, do not climb down into the sinkholes!
- Pick an event off Alpena’s calendar of events; many events have switched to a virtual format due to Covid-19.
- Watch the sunset over the Thunder Bay River.
- Climb the Old and New Lighthouses of Presque Isle. (Covid-19 restrictions, call ahead)
There is something for everyone, for every season in the Sanctuary of the Great Lakes. Start your Alpena bucket list on January 1st, for an adventurous new year!
For a complete list of adventures, print out our Adventure Checklist here.
For the calendar of events, go to visitalpena.com and stay tuned for updates!