This is not a hill for Beginners! (However, if you are ambitious, it's not impossible) Mt. Bohemia has the largest vertical drop (900 ft.) in the midwest and some of the best powder (they don't groom the hill). The annual Mardi Gras celebration tends to attract the masses with a $5,000 reward to the girl with the most beads.
If you don't wish to get an eye-full it's best to ski on other less crowded and female friendly days. The staff here is very helpful and friendly and rentals are available.
Coppertown U.S.A. Mining Museum in Calumet is a cooperating site of the Keweenaw National Historic Park. This museum will give you a wonderful introduction to America's first real mining boom. For this reason you may wish to make this one of the early things that you visit in the area. The museum is housed in the former Calumet and Hecla mine pattern shop.
The Calumet Theatre offers 45 minute tours June through color season Tuesday - Sunday 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. Due to performance schedules there may be some exceptions to these tour times. This theatre is very ornate inside, and the murals that originally graced the proscenium arch were recreated in 1999. Early in the 1900's during the copper boom the Calumet Theatre was the center of culture for a population that numbered over 50,000. Highly dressed ladies and gentleman would rub shoulders in the foyer with the rough handed miners who were dressed in their Sunday best. Such famous performers as Sarah Bernhardt, Houdini, Lillian Russell, Caruso, Madame Helena Modjeska, James O?Neil, Leslie Carter, John Philip Sousa, Jason Robards, and Douglas Fairbanks performed here. The auditorium was a wonder to the people of the Copper District with its rich furnishings, gilt architectural ornaments, and heavy velvet curtains. Four box seats with rattan armchairs, and private entrances were available for the wealthy. The acoustics were so excellent in this theatre that it was possible for performers to be heard without a microphone. To this day, whispers on stage can be clearly heard by someone sitting in the back of the balcony. On your tour you will visit the balconies and behind stage where you will venture into the dressing room used by Sarah Barnhardt. If you will be in the area for a time you should check out the theatre's schedule, as this theatre still hosts 60 to 80 events a year. Cost of the tour is $4.00 for adults ($2 with Golden Age Pass), children 6 to12 $2.00, and children 5 and under are free.
Pick up a brochure for a walking tour of Calumet’s Historic Business District either at the Houghton or Calumet visitor centers. This brochure will give you the locations, as well as brief descriptions and short histories of the various buildings in this National Historic area.
The Upper Peninsula Firefighters Memorial Museum is another cooperating site in the National Historic Park. This fire station, built in 1898, is constructed of Lake Superior sandstone. If you have lots of time, or a half hour to burn, and if you enjoy old fire engines there are a few here you may like. The museum is open June through September from noon to 3:00. It is a very small display, and a donation of $2.00 is asked for.
Laurium Manor, which also operates as a bed and breakfast (see accommodations) offers tours daily at 1:00, 2:00, and 3:00 June - October. November-May self-guided tours are offered daily from 11:00 to 5:00. In the summer please purchase tickets at the front door 5 minutes before the beginning of each tour, and wait on the front porch. In the winter ring the doorbell for admission. Note that no cameras are allowed inside during your tour. Due to Laurie Manor being a Historic Hotel Bed and Breakfast some bedrooms may not be open to view during your tour. In 1908 wealthy copper mine owners were building mansions all over the Keweenaw. The Laurium Manor was the largest and most opulent of them all. Captain Thomas Hoatson, owner of the Calumet & Arizona Mining Co., spared no expense in the construction of this 13,000 square foot mansion. At a time when miners were making 25 cents per hour, this 40-room home was constructed at a cost of $50,000. Decorations and furnishing cost another $35,000. On the tour you will hear about the interesting history of this mansion and see the silver leaf covered parlor ceiling, embossed and gilded elephant leather wall coverings, stained glass in the dining room, a grand triple staircase made of hand carved oak, a wall size built-in icebox made of marble, a panoramic landscape mural in the den, a 1300 sq. ft. ballroom on the 3rd floor, two room size cedar closets, bedrooms (some over 500 sq. ft.), and the turntable in the two story carriage house used to turn the car around.
St. Anne's Church is being developed into the Keweenaw Heritage Center Museum. This church is one of the great ethnic churches in the Copper County. I love this beautiful structure, with its gothic arched entrance that marches back in steps. As the copper mining industry developed immigrants flocked to the area to work in the mines. First the Cornish, then the Irish and Germans, followed by the French-Canadians, Swedes, Finns, Austrians, and Italians. The many churches located in Calumet served not only as spiritual centers, but also offered social, educational, and aid opportunities. This church was opened in 1901 to serve the French-Canadian Catholic people living in Calumet. This Gothic structure was built of local red sandstone and featured a 400-seat nave, a 130-foot bell tower, organ and choir loft, babtistery, an octagonal sanctuary, and two side alters. In 1966 this church was no longer in use and fell into sad condition. In 1994 after years of decay the abandoned building became a project of the Keweenaw Heritage Center. Along with the Heritage group, local contributions, and grants from various other groups and councils it was possible to bring St. Anne's, including her stained glass windows back to life. The Heritage Center is developing a museum called Steeples and Storefronts, which will explore the everyday lives of the men, women, and children of this mining region by looking at their homes, schools, shops, churches, and even the saloons. On summer days this church is usually open to the public with displays, as well as giving you the opportunity to view the progress of the restoration. (donations are appreciated) If you are unable to visit the inside, at least gaze at it's beautiful exterior which I find one of the most beautiful in the Keweenaw.
St. Paul the Apostle Church is another favorite building of mine. It is easily recognizable because of its two tall twin steeples, which makes it a unique structure in the area. Slovenian immigrants who came to this country to work in the Copper Country mines established this church, formerly known as St. Joseph. This is another outstanding example of turn-of-the-century architecture. Built of local sandstone the church took five years to construct, being completed in 1908 at the cost of $100,000. Cathedral style stained glass windows were installed in 1907 at a cost of $600 each for the small windows, and $900 each for the large. The interior of the church, except for modern lights and a few other minor changes remains substantially unchanged architecturally. The choir loft of the church houses a tracker pipe organ still in excellent working condition. Encased in oak this organ is 18 feet wide and 19 feet deep and was built at a cost of $4,000. The beautiful paintings and alter work in the sanctuary took three years to complete and still remain an inspiration to its parishioners and visitors. This church is often open to visitors and donations are appreciated.
Okay, so you're probably wondering how in the world did the International Frisbee Hall of Fame and Museum end up in snow-belt isolated small town Calumet Michigan.
Well, the answer is that the first organized and internationally recognized Frisbee competition took place near here, at Eagle Harbor, a little bit further up the Keweenaw Peninsula.
"Boots" Bob, Jake, Tim, and Pete Healy created the International Frisbee Tournament, the longest running disc competition in history in 1958 at Eagle Harbor, Michigan, during a family picnic. Their North Central Team won the fabled Julius T. Nachazel Cup for the first nine years of the event.
I learned that this event is often called "Guts Frisbee."
The Hall of Fame is located in the large Calumet Colosseum, a year-round sporting facility located on Red Jacket Street, not far from US 41.
During the winter you can catch one heck of a ride on the Swedetown sledding hill. Groomed for extra speed and sterability, this hill can provide plenty of fun and EXCERCISE!
Beware of days when the hill is full of little children. I've heard many a story of head-on collisions.
The Great Bear Chase is an annual event, usually held in mid-March, at the Sweedtown Ski Trails in Calumet, MI. The weekend offers much fun for cross-country skiing enthusiasts. Serious skiiers can enter the 26 or 50-km races. For more informaion visit http://www.keweenawtrails.com/events/bearchase/details.htm
Given the historical nature of the area, antique and resale shops are especially interesting. There is also a good selection of book stores and resale shops dealing in books... lots of local history, novels and general non-fiction.
What a gem for this town to have its own Opera House - a relic from the time when Calumet was bursting at its seams with tens of thousands of recent immigrants starved for culture in the great cold snowy harsh Keewenaw Peninsula. The place has been meticulously restored - the murals are wonderful - and it is a small miracle that the locals are able to keep the place going, particularly now that the nearby college community of Houghton has built its modern own Performing Arts Center.
If you are in the area, be sure to ask to look inside - more than anything else in the area, it gives you an understanding of what this region used to be. Better yet - come here for a performance. In the summer of 2004, I attended an opera production here from the Pine Mountain Music Festival, and there are also classic films shown here, once a month throughout the year. The silent films are especially memorable. One of the my favorite U.P. memories is of seeing the original 1925 "Hunchback of Notre Dame" here - the one with Lon Chaney. (It was shown with a live piano accompaniment - a local film buff composed an original score just for the evening.)