Archives—May 2010

Ride the Keweenaw Weekend

Swimming in Lake Superior is a great way to cool off on a hot summer day!
Swimming in Lake Superior is a great way to cool off on a hot summer day!

On Monday, Houghton broke the record high temperature for the day and for the month of May. Historically, temperatures for the Keweenaw area in May are typically in the upper 60’s, however, over the past couple days the temperatures have been in the 80’s and even the 90’s. On Monday temperatures across the Keweenaw reached record highs with the Houghton area getting up to 96 degrees, setting a new daily and monthly record for the town. To stay cool and enjoy the summer weather Michigan Tech students made their way to the local beaches. Many students even went swimming in Lake Superior which rarely gets above 50 degrees! Several students are hoping that the weather will stay warm and sunny for the upcoming Memorial Weekend. Most students do not have Friday classes in the summer and all students are dismissed from class for Memorial Day Recess on Monday. Memorial Weekend provides students with the opportunity to take some time off from the fast pace of summer courses and enjoy the local area. Whether it’s camping, biking, hiking, or a car trip along the Keweenaw shoreline, there is lots to enjoy this weekend.

A snapshot of the single track section of the Copper Harbort Mountain Bike Trails.
A snapshot of the single track section of the Copper Harbor Mountain Bike Trails.

This weekend, May 28-31 the Copper Harbor Trails Club is hosting Ride the Keweenaw Weekend. Ride the Keweenaw Weekend is a celebration of the Copper Harbor Mountain Bike Trails being designated by the International Mountain Bicycling Association as an “Epic Ride“. The rating of “Epic Ride” is one of the best designations a bike trail can receive. The Copper Harbor Mountain Bike Trails are now one of the 48 bike trials across the world with this classification. The Copper Harbor Mountain Bike Trails received the “Epic Ride” designation because of the diversity of the trails, the thrill of the ride, the beauty of the surrounding area, and the collaboration of the people who make the trail system a success. The weekend’s celebratory events include food, music, demonstrations, and of course biking on the newly designated “Epic Trails”. On Saturday, May 29 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. there will be guided tours the Michigan Tech Trails, the Churning Rapid Trails, and the Swedetown Trails. On Saturday evening in Copper Harbor Park there will be live music and a barbecue. On Sunday, May 30 there will be bike demos, a trail dedication ceremony, and more biking! All proceeds from the weekend’s events will got toward funding the Keweenaw Point Trail Project. The plans for the Keweenaw Point Trail Project is to create another trail approximately 25 miles long that will travel along the shoreline at the tip of the Keweenaw Peninsula. At this time the project is estimated to cost over $350,000. The Copper Harbor Trails Club is hosting the Ride the Keweenaw Weekend as one way of raising funds for the project. If the funding for this project comes through the trail would improve the local area not only in a recreational manner but also economically. The addition of a waterfront mountain bike trail to a trail system already designated as an “Epic Ride” would increase the number of visitors to the surrounding area significantly. For a complete schedule of events and for more information regarding the Keweenaw Point Trail Project go to Event Highlights.

I hope students and parents alike enjoy the beginning of summer! Check back for next week’s article, I will be writing about money management tips for students. Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have!


Keweenaw Bike to Work Day!

A Michigan Tech student biking on the Tech Trails.
A Michigan Tech student biking on the Tech Trails.

It seems summer weather has reached Houghton just in time for Keweenaw Bike to Work Day! The forecast for the next week is expected to be primarily sunny with temperatures in the upper 60’s. Perfect weather for biking! May is National Bike Month and May 17-21 is Bike to Work Week. To help promote the healthy and environmental friendly transportation of biking the Houghton Area will be holding Keweenaw Bike to Work Day on Friday, May 21.

In preparation for Bike to Work Day the Michigan Tech’s Copper Country Cycling Club hosted a commuter class at Kestner Waterfront Park this past Saturday. The class included commuter safety tips and bike tuneups. To further encourage people in the local area to bike to work this Friday there will be several events throughout the day for those who choose non-motorized transportation that day. There is a registration for prizes, snack and giveaway stations throughout the Keweenaw Peninsula, and free bike safety checks. All-day throughout Calumet, Laurium, Hancock, and Houghton police officers and Bike to Work Day Volunteers will be handing out water bottles. From 7-9 a.m. and from 4-6 p.m. there will be snack stations across the Keweenaw Peninsula and from 4-6 p.m. there will be bike safety checks. A new component to this year’s Bike to Work Day is a Bike to Work Day Challenge. For the challenge businesses are competing to have the most employees pledge to ride their bike to work. There are three classes based on the number of employees at the business. The business within each class with the most participation will receive an award and will be entered into a raffle for a catered coffee break. For further details on the days events check out the Bike to Work Day Schedule.

I hope students and parents alike enjoy the beginning of summer! Check back for next week’s article, I will be writing about Ride the Keweenaw Weekend that will take place May 28-31. Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have!


Summer in Houghton

The spring semester has officially come to a close and this week marks the start of Track A summer courses. Each year several Michigan Tech students take courses on campus or online from Michigan Tech. Summer courses are a great way for students to stay on track with their degree requirements. Even taking just one or two summer classes can allow students to take a smaller course load during the academic year. I spent last summer taking courses at Michigan Tech and I will be doing the same this summer. By taking summer courses, Track A and Track B, for two summers I will be able to graduate a year early, in May 2011. I really enjoyed taking summer courses last year and I am looking forward to this summer’s courses. The best part of taking summer courses on campus is the opportunity you have as a student to enjoy all that the Houghton area has to offer in the summertime. Summer courses typically run Monday through Thursday making it easy for students to spend their three day weekends exploring the Keweenaw Peninsula and participating in the local festivities. There are several things to do in the local area over the summer. Some of the summer festivities students enjoy participating in include the Bridgefest, the local Fourth of July fireworks, and the Strawberry Festival. Throughout this summer I plan on highlighting the various upcoming local events. In this article I would like to discuss how your student can participate in Bridgefest.

Bridgefest 2010

bridge
The Portage Lift Bridge

This year’s Bridgefest will take place June 18-20. Bridgefest is a celebration of the birthday of the Portage Lift Bridge that serves as a link between the cities of Houghton and Hancock. The weekend’s events include a flea market, a parade, fireworks, a fishing derby, a pancake breakfast and much more. Events taking place during Bridgefest that are especially of interest to students are the Keweenaw Chain Drive and the Houghton Rotary Seafood Fest. The Keweenaw Chain Drive is a mountain bike race that starts at Best Western Franklin Square Inn and ends in the Portage Health Parking Lot. Students who wish to participate in the bike race can choose from the 16 or 32 mile courses that are a part of the Hancock trail system. The registration fee prior to May 31 is $35 and after May 31 is $50. Each racer in the Keweenaw Chain Drive gets a t-shirt, food at the finish, and free photo downloads. The Keweenaw Chain Drive will take place on Saturday, June 19 at 10 a.m. The Houghton Rotary Seafood Fest is also taking place in conjunction with Bridgefest. The Houghton Rotary Seafood Fest will take place in Kestner Waterfront Park Friday, June 18 and Saturday, June 19. On Friday food will be served from 5 p.m.-12 a.m. and on Saturday food will be served from 11 a.m.-12 a.m. The menu for the Seafood Fest includes a wide variety of seafood and sides. Tickets for a lobster dinner that includes lobster and two sides are just $25 and tickets for all the other menu items are sold for $10 a ticket with all ticket sale proceeds going to charity.

The Brigefest is just one of the many festivities that Michigan Tech students can take part in over the summer. For a complete listing of local attractions and events check out the Keweenaw Peninsula Chamber of Commerce. I hope students and parents alike enjoy the beginning of summer! Check back for next week’s article, I will be writing about Keweenaw Bike to Work Day that will take place on Friday, May 21. Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have!