A bump in the night, a whisper in your ear. Is it your imagination? Perhaps it’s the wind. Or maybe…just maybe…it’s something else

My hometown…..

Hauntings, urban legends, and Native American folklore are cultural experiences that can be found all over the world. Alpena is no exception with a rich history that tends to…jump out at you…from time to time. From downtown, to the countryside, to the shorelines of Lake Huron, find your haunted adventure by visiting any of these locations. Tis’ the season, after all!

(In no particular order)

1. John A. Lau Saloon– Alpena’s oldest historical saloon located right in the heart of “old town” in the downtown area, is sure to please your palate and pique your curiosity. The ghost that haunts John A. Lau is said to be that of “Agnes”, John’s wife who died on June 24, 1913. There are several speculations as to the cause of death with the most investigated being that she died of consumption (TB); other stories say she died in child birth or in a boating accident near the Saginaw area. Although we cannot be sure as to the cause death, we do know that she has made the Lau her home in the afterlife. Employees say that sometimes she will tip their trays over and play pranks in the cellar, scaring the wits out of them! Diners have also captured the ghost of Agnes on film (see the John A. Lau website for photos). In fact, Agnes has become so popular after her death, that Mid Michigan Paranormal Investigators launched their own investigation on several occasions with rather interesting results. You can find their investigation in a chapter of Haunted Travels of Michigan by Kathleen Tedsen and Beverlee Rydel.


2. Old Presque Isle Lighthouse sits ominously against a grey sky.
Old Presque Isle Lighthouse, said to be be haunted by former keeper, George Parris
Old Presque Isle Lighthouse– Built in 1840, Old Presque Isle light was the first lighthouse in the Presque Isle area. Although only operational for 31 years, she still has plenty of ghost tales to be heard. Some say they can hear the screams of a keeper’s wife who was locked away in the tower by her husband. However, the famous story is that of George Parris. George Parris was keeper of the lighthouse after it was decommissioned and he and his wife took care of the grounds and the lighthouse for tourism purposes. George died in 1992, leaving his wife Lorraine to tend to the grounds where every night since his death, the amber light at the top of the tower glows from dusk until dawn. The wiring was removed from the light in 1979, could this be George? Many think so. In fact, one little girl who was visiting the lighthouse was giggling up at the top of the tower and when her parents asked what was so funny, she said there was a man up there making her laugh. George loved children and later she identified the man as George Parris after seeing a photo hung up in the museum adjacent to the lighthouse.


3. Thunder Bay Theatre– Another location right in the “old town” district of downtown Alpena, where the history of the buildings runs centuries old, is the Thunder Bay Theatre. The Thunder Bay Theatre is not well known for being haunted amongst the public, but the actors and production crew know better! There is said to be the ghost of a young girl named “Aggie” that roams the building. Aggie is well known for being more mischievous than malicious. Sometimes actors will be looking for specific costumes or props without any luck, and the next day there it will be…in an all too “eerily obvious place”. They also say that Aggie is much more apparent if you are a “non-believer”…in other words, she will make a believer out of you yet!

4. Ghost Village of Bell– Located in the Besser Bell Natural Area, this ghost town holds evidence of occupation with a small cemetery where villagers are buried, a remaining chimney, some collapsed walls, and a bronze dedication plaque. People claim these lands are haunted by the spirits of the Native Americans and perhaps the people of Bell. Care to find out? Write us with your story.

5. Sacred Rock– Located just 6 miles north of Hoeft Park outside of Rogers City, there lies a giant boulder measuring six feet tall and twelve feet wide. One legend has it that before the rock was there, two rival Indian chiefs were in a constant squabble over hunting lands and territory, with one chief being more aggressive than the other. The chiefs would eventually meet at the boundary line where the rock is now and continue to bicker, causing the Great Spirit to become so upset that he threw this giant rock down upon them; ultimately crushing and burying them beneath. Some say the earth still shudders on the shores of Lake Huron today. Another legend states that the rock was in place while the two Indian chiefs were bickering over territory lines and while they were having their usual disputes upon the rock, the Great Spirit cast down a bolt of lightening, killing both Indian chiefs. Now, some say that when it rains the blood from the dead Indians can be seen on the rock. Have you seen the rock “bleed” when it rains? Find out the complete story in “Stories the Red People Have Told…and…More” by Robert E. Haltiner.

6. The Court Yard– This fine-dining Alpena establishment is a favorite amongst locals for dinner and drinks and is another place that is not well known for being “haunted” amongst the public. However, servers of the Court Yard have had their own paranormal experiences to share. One server was prepping the tables and lighting candles before the restaurant was due to open in 15 minutes, when out of the corner of her eye she saw a man in a top hat sitting at a table. So she finished what she was doing and started to walk over to the table…but he was gone. A bartender told a story how a regular customer who always sat in the same spot had passed away. One day she was walking around the corner and heard the wind chime go off above the doorway (signaling a customer), and heard a bar stool scrape across the floor as if someone had a seat. Upon going back to the bar area, there was nobody there…except the one pulled out bar stool at the spot where the regular customer always used to sit. One pulled out bar stool amongst a row of nicely pushed in ones.

7.Thunder Bay Lighthouse– What is it with lighthouses and hauntings? Some say that ghosts and lighthouses go together like peas and carrots due to the lonely state of the keepers who maintained them and the fateful shipwrecks caused by their failure. It is believed that the Thunder Bay Lighthouse is haunted by the ghost of “Morgan”, a former keeper who died of loneliness. Morgan still roams the shoreline of Thunder Bay Island to this day and can be heard walking up and down the stairs, continuing on his keeper duties in the afterlife.

8.The State Theater– Yet another location in our historic downtown Alpena, the State Theater is one of two john-a-lau-ghost
These John A. Lau patrons were just goofing off and getting a picture with the Native American statue, when they got more than they bargained for! cinemas in town to watch newly released movies on the big screen. This building, like the others, is very old and sometimes they come with more character, or characters, than what you see on the big screen. One employee told the story how one night he was closing up the theater around 2am. He went to go into the women’s bathroom to clean when he saw the stall door closing with fingers pulling it shut. He stepped back outside to wait for the woman to leave, but after about 20 minutes of waiting outside the bathroom he called out, “is anybody in here?”. With no response, he peeked inside and the stall door was wide open with nobody inside. There are also stories about a little girl that can be seen from time to time sitting above the marquee.

9. Negwegon State Park– This beautiful, rustic state land is also infused with a long Native American history. Although we have not heard of any specific hauntings or haunted areas, we have heard of fishermen and campers who get that overall feeling of “unease” when wandering around at night. This could be due to the fact that this historic area is also the home of an Indian burial ground. The more you know…

10. Squaw Bay– Have you ever wondered how Squaw Bay got its name? There once was an Indian maiden named Birdsong who fell in love with a handsome brave named Standing Bear. During the autumn, or Moon of the Falling Leaves, Standing Bear went fishing with other members of the tribe and was caught in a notorious Lake Huron storm…never to return. Birdsong weeped and mourned for an entire year, until the next Moon of the Falling Leaves, where she went back to the bay and never returned. Her wailing stopped and the tribe was happy that Birdsong and Standing Bear were reunited again. However, when the next full moon occurred, Birdsong’s mournful wailing was heard again…thus this bay was given the name “Mourning Squaw Bay” and was later shortened to “Squaw Bay”. Have you ever heard the mourning of Birdsong while standing at Squaw Bay? Find out more on this story in “Stories the Red People Have Told…and…More” by Robert E. Haltiner.
-BONUS-

S.S. Alpena
The Alpena Ghost Ship– This is not located in the Alpena area, BUT…since it is Alpena’s namesake…we figured this story would be a good one to tell as well! On October 5th, 1880, the steamboat “Alpena” set out from Grand Haven to Chicago on a warm Indian Summer night. With 80 passengers and 22 crew members aboard, this Indian Summer night turned cold and stormy as temperatures quickly dropped below zero. The Alpena was torn apart in what later became known as “the worst gale in Lake Michigan history”. Deeming the name, “The Big Blow”, wreckage of the Alpena was found amongst seventy miles of Michigan beaches along with thousands of bobbing apples in the water, which the steamboat was carrying. To this day, some sailors swear that they see the Alpena on misty nights in the waters of Lake Michigan. A ghost ship in the night.

Now that you have this knowledge of hauntings and folklore in the Alpena area, you may take our word for it, respectfully investigate for yourself, or disregard it and live your life as you would any other day. Just remember, there is nothing to fear from the dead…it is the living that get a little crazy!

This entry was posted in Activities, Alpena, fall, haunted, History, Holidays, Inspiring A-Town, Inspiring Alpena, Lifestyle, and tagged Alpena, Alpena Convention & Visitors Bureau, Alpena County, folklore, Great Lakes, haunted, history, holidays, Inspiring A-Town, Lake Huron, Michigan, native american, Northeast Michigan, outdoor, pioneers, Pure Michigan, Sanctuary of the Great Lakes, urban legends, on October 25th, 2016 .

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“I wouldn’t change you for the world, but I would change the world for you”. Unknown

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National Down Syndrome Month

 

 

Down syndrome is the most common genetic disorder in America.

People with Down syndrome have mild to moderate disabilities.

There are many supportive programs for people with Down syndrome and their families, helping people with Down syndrome to live healthy and fulfilling lives.

 

Down syndrome (sometimes called Down’s syndrome) is a condition in which a child is born with an extra copy of their 21st chromosome (hence its other name, Trisomy 21). This causes physical and mental developmental delays and disabilities.

 

Many of the disabilities are lifelong and they can also shorten life expectancy. However, people with Down syndrome can live healthy and fulfilling lives. Recent medical advances as well as cultural and institutional support for people with Down syndrome and their families provide many opportunities to help overcome challenges.

 

What Causes Down Syndrome?

According to the National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS), about 1 in 700 babies in the United States is born with Down syndrome. It’s the most common genetic disorder in the United States.

 

A quick explanation of basic genetics can help you understand how it happens. In all cases of reproduction, both parents pass their genes on to their children. These genes are carried in chromosomes. When the baby’s cells develop, each cell is supposed to receive 23 pairs of chromosomes (46 chromosomes total). Half of the chromosomes are from the mother and half are from the father.

 

In children with Down syndrome, one of the chromosomes doesn’t separate properly. The baby ends up with three copies, or an extra partial copy, of chromosome 21, instead of two. This extra chromosome causes problems as the brain and physical features develop.

 

Types of Down Syndrome

 

There are three types of Down syndrome:

Trisomy 21

Trisomy 21 means there is an extra copy of chromosome 21 in every cell. This is the most common form of Down syndrome.

Mosaicism

Mosaicism occurs when a child is born with an extra chromosome in some but not all of their cells. People with mosaic Down syndrome tend to have fewer symptoms than those with trisomy 21.

Translocation

In this type of Down syndrome, children have only an extra part of chromosome 21. There are 46 total chromosomes. However, one of them has an extra piece of chromosome 21 attached.

 

Will My Child Be at Risk for Down Syndrome?

Certain parents have a greater risk of giving birth to a child with Down syndrome. Mothers age 35 and older are more likely to have a baby with Down syndrome than younger mothers. The risk increases the older the mother is. Research shows that paternal age also has an effect — one 2003 study found that fathers over 40 had twice the risk of having a child with Down syndrome.

 

Other parents who are at greater risk of having a child with Down syndrome include:

people with a family history of Down syndrome

people who carry the genetic translocation

 

It’s important to remember that no one of these factors mean that you will definitely have a baby with Down syndrome, but statistically and over a large population, they can put you at higher risk.

 

SYMPTOMS

 

What Are the Symptoms of Down Syndrome?

Though the likelihood of carrying a baby with Down syndrome can be estimated by screening during pregnancy, you won’t experience any symptoms of carrying a Down syndrome child.

At birth, babies with Down syndrome usually have certain characteristic signs, including:

flat facial features

small head and ears

short neck

bulging tongue

eyes that slant upward

oddly shaped ears

poor muscle tone

 

An infant with Down syndrome can be born at normal size but will develop more slowly than a child without the condition.

 

People with Down syndrome usually have some degree of mental disability, but it’s often mild to moderate. Mental and social development delays may mean that the child could have:

impulsive behavior

poor judgment

short attention span

slow learning capabilities

 

Medical complications often accompany Down syndrome. These may include:

congenital heart defects

hearing loss

poor vision

cataracts (clouded eyes)

hip problems, such as dislocations

leukemia

chronic constipation

sleep apnea (interrupted breathing during sleep)

dementia (thought and memory problems)

hypothyroidism (low thyroid function)

obesity

late tooth growth, causing problems with chewing

Alzheimer’s, in later life

 

People with Down syndrome are also more prone to infection. They may struggle with respiratory infections, urinary tract infections, and skin infections.

 

Down syndrome is the most common genetic disorder in America.

People with Down syndrome have mild to moderate disabilities.

There are many supportive programs for people with Down syndrome and their families, helping people with Down syndrome to live healthy and fulfilling lives.

Down syndrome (sometimes called Down’s syndrome) is a condition in which a child is born with an extra copy of their 21st chromosome (hence its other name, Trisomy 21). This causes physical and mental developmental delays and disabilities.

Many of the disabilities are lifelong and they can also shorten life expectancy. However, people with Down syndrome can live healthy and fulfilling lives. Recent medical advances as well as cultural and institutional support for people with Down syndrome and their families provide many opportunities to help overcome challenges.

 

 

 

 

 

Check out the National Down Syndrome Society and the National Association for Down Syndrome for help and hope.

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WPC-Texture

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We consume photos through our eyes, but that doesn’t mean they can’t have a tactile element.

Photography is a primarily visual medium, but we can experience it with more than one sense. This week, focus on the tactile element of the objects you shoot, whether it’s one distinct quality — softness, smoothness, graininess, or any other texture you find interesting — or a combination of several within one frame..

check out other photos of texture

Red Rose Day

Date When Celebrated : Always June 12

Red Rose Day is a time to enjoy and appreciate America’s favorite flower…..the red rose. A red rose signifies love. A June setting for Red Rose Day is very appropriate, as this is by far the most popular month for weddings. And, they are in bloom in the gardens across America this month.

In addition to being the most popular cut flower, roses are also the most popular flower in flower beds and around foundation of houses, garages and sheds. They are easy to grow, producing a bounty of sweet scented flowers from June up to the first frost.

Roses – Significance and Meaning of Each Color

rose, picture, images, jpg, pictures

Roses come in a wide range of colors. Each different color has a different meaning, or significance. It sends a silent, yet extremely important message from the sender to receiver.

Who originally defined the rose color meanings? We don’t know. But, make sure you are sending the right message when you select roses for someone. Otherwise, he or she will get the wrong message!

Guys, rest assured ….. SHE knows the meaning of every rose color. But, she is only looking for one… the red rose.

Rose Color Meaning
Red Nothing sends the message of love more clearly, than a red rose. Make that a dozen! The meaning of this rose color is quite clear. Red roses represent  love, beauty,  passion, courage and respect.
White Whit is the color of purity and innocence. It also represents silence or secrecy, reverence and humility.
Pink Appreciation,”Thank you”, grace, perfect happiness, and admiration
Dark Pink Send roses of this color to show appreciation or gratitude.
Light Pink admiration, sympathy
Yellow Joy, gladness, friendship, delight, freedom, the promise of a new beginning.
Orange Admiration, desire, enthusiasm, fascination
Red and White Given together, these signify unity.
Red Rosebud A symbol of purity and loveliness
White Rosebud Symbolic of girlhood
Cream Charm, thoughtfulness, graciousness
Thornless Rose Signifies “Love at first sight”.


All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt”. (Charles Schulz)

 

happy-valentines-day-clip-art-5Each year on February 14th, many people exchange cards, candy, gifts or flowers with their special “valentine.” The day of romance we call Valentine’s Day is named for a Christian martyr and dates back to the 5th century, but has origins in the Roman holiday Lupercalia.

Lovers’ holiday celebrated on February 14, the feast day of St. Valentine, one of two 3rd-century Roman martyrs of the same name. St. Valentine is considered the patron of lovers and especially of those unhappily in love. The feast day became a lovers’ festival in the 14th century, probably as an extension of pagan love festivals and fertility rites celebrated in mid-February.

Until the 19th century handwritten valentines were often given rather than modern mass-produced greeting cards.

“I don’t understand why Cupid was chosen to represent Valentine’s Day. When I think about romance, the last thing on my mind is a short, chubby toddler coming at me with a weapon.”
Unknown

My Pic of the Week

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Flag Day

The U.S. Flag Code formalizes and unifies the traditional ways in which we give respect to the flag, also contains specific instructions on how the flag is not to be used.The following is a list of do’s and don’ts associated with Old Glory, the U.S. Flag.

When displaying the flag, DO the following:

Display the U.S. flag from sunrise to sunset on buildings and stationary flagstaffs in the open. When a patriotic effect is desired the flag may be displayed 24-hours a day if properly illuminated during the hours of darkness.

When placed on a single staff or lanyard, place the U.S. Flag above all other flags.

When flags are displayed in a row, the U.S. flag goes to the observer’s left. Flags of other nations are flown at same height. State and local flags are traditionally flown lower.

When used during a marching ceremony or parade with other flags, the U.S. Flag will be to the observer’s left.

On special days, the flag may be flown at half-staff. On Memorial Day it is flown at half-staff until noon and then raised.

When flown at half-staff, should be first hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position. The flag should be again raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day. By “half-staff” is meant lowering the flag to one-half the distance between the top and bottom of the staff.

When the flag is displayed over the middle of the street, it should be suspended vertically with the union (blue field of stars) to the north in an east and west street or to the east in a north and south street.

When placed on a Podium the flag should be placed on the speaker’s right or the staging area. Other flags should be placed to the left.

When displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall (or other flat surface), the union (blue field of stars) should be uppermost and to the flag’s own right, that is, to the observer’s left.

When displayed in a window it should be displayed in the same way — with the union or blue field to the left of the observer in the street.

When the flag is displayed on a car, the staff shall be fixed firmly to the chassis or clamped to the right fender.

When the flag is used to cover a casket, it should be so placed that the union is at the head and over the left shoulder. The flag should not be lowered into the grave or allowed to touch the ground.

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My Pic of the Week

flowers

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Dreaming of Spring and NO snow.

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