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It's Not Summer in Michigan's Upper Peninsula Unless These 20 Things Happen

by Megan Murphy Jul 25, 2016

1. You drive down County Road 581 alone.

This is pure bliss in the summer — windows down, condensation from the fresh bottle of Coca-Cola running down your leg, and your favorite song blaring through your stock speakers.

2. You climb Sugarloaf at least once.

Whether you pick the easy trail or the difficult trail, you’re making it to the top. You have to get that Instagram picture of the sunset just right to get at least 11 likes.

A photo posted by Samantha Leadbetter (@samanthalee126) on

3. You buy a pack of grape-flavored cigarillos and smoke one in your parents’ backyard.

Don’t ask. This is necessary.

4. You get drunk at Van Riper and pass out in your camper.

5. Your sunburn gets so bad you peel — at least twice.

This is due to your pasty, sensitive skin not able to take the sunshine. So as soon as it hits 70 degrees, you decide to dedicate an entire Saturday afternoon to boiling like a lobster.

6. Your furnace kicks in.

Just because it’s “summer” doesn’t necessarily mean it’s 70-80 degrees all day, every day. When it drops down to 30-40 at night your furnace knows when to pick up the slack.

7. You go to at least one bonfire.

On the beach or in someone’s backyard, it’s bound to happen.

8. A McDonald’s drive-thru run becomes mandatory.

Those dollar cones aren’t going to eat themselves.

9. A late night swim has to happen in Lake Superior after the bars.

Last call? Head to the lake.

10. You visit Da Yooper’s Tourist Trap for a new car decal.

11. You go to Art on the Rocks every July to check out all of the up and coming local artists.

12. You go to the Marquette Food Fest, specifically to get waffle fries from the Vango’s food tent.

13. Your family takes a Pictured Rocks boat tour in Munising.

14. You take a bike ride on the Heritage Trail and stop at Cognition Brewing Company for a Deep Scream Cream Ale.

15. You buy fresh blueberries at the Marquette Blueberry Festival and catch a show by the Flat Broke Blues Band.

16. You catch a summer play at the Lake Superior Theatre, which is inside of an active boathouse that holds a yacht named ‘The Pelican’ during the winter.

A photo posted by Jacob DeLong (@jakedelongjd) on

17. You visit the Lower Harbor Park and get woodchips in your shoes.

18. You take a trip to Sault Ste. Marie to watch the huge iron ore freighters glide through the Straits of Mackinac.

19. You grab all of your friends and head to McCarty’s Cove to catch some rays. And when it gets too hot, you jump off the Black Rocks into the hypothermia-inducing Lake Superior.

A photo posted by Mo May (@moriahmay3) on

20. The alumni softball games happen at Al Quaal, complete with fireworks.

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