2018-08-30 / Local News

Leelanau to step off for six walks planned for weekend

By Jen Murphy
of the Enterprise staff

Lace up those shoes and get ready to put one foot in front of the other.

Labor Day weekend in Leelanau County always gets residents and visitors moving with walks, runs and hikes. And this Labor Day will be no exception with six events scheduled, appropriate for all ages and abilities.

Three of the walks scheduled will step off on Labor Day and cross bridges not named Mackinac.

Whether participants stride, stroll or strut, participation is the key. Each event planned for the long weekend is focused on community-building.

That’s how District No. 5 Commissioner and Leland Committee for Holiday Excitement chair Patricia Soutas-Little views Leland’s Labor Day Bridge Walk and other weekend walking and running events.

“I think what’s really special - it’s such a community spirit generator,” she said. “It’s surprising to me - the amount of spirit and civic-mindedness in Leland and in Leelanau County.”

Anyone who completes the 20th Annual Leland Labor Day Bridge Walk, led by Post 7731 VFW Honor Guard, will be awarded a certificate and receive cookies from Trish’s Dishes and lemonade supplied by Leland Mercantile. The walk will begin at noon with participants gathering Monday at 11:30 a.m. at the parking lot behind the Blue Bird.

Glen Lake area will host its traditional bridge walk across The Narrows at the same time.

The walk will be led by organizers Bill and Dorothy Thompson, who have watched over the event for more than two decades.

Chairperson Joanne Beare is pleased the Empire Area Community Center added the Labor Day event to its calendar. “The Empire Area Community Center is honored to be chosen as hosts of this year and look forward to continuing this annual tradition,” Beare said.

Certificates will be given upon completion of the .3 mile walk. T-shirts and refreshments will be available.

Perhaps a smaller venue, but an equally pretty promenade, the Lake Leelanau Narrows bridge will also provide a path for pedestrians on Labor Day. The Lake Leelanau Bridge Walk will kick off at 9 a.m. at Fig’s restaurant. Walkers will celebrate with coffee and breakfast burritos as they reach the finish line at Peddling Beans.

“Come and help support our community,” said Lake Leelanau Community Association member Madeline Houdek. “It’s a fun thing to do to get out and enjoy Labor Day.”

The association is sponsoring the event and has arranged for a guest speaker, as well as presentations about updates on the bridge and community events. The walk will be canceled in event of rain.

For those looking for speed, head to Northport for the first ever Bay to Braman Bolt - a quick one-mile path from Northport Bay to the top of Braman Hill. Finishers will enjoy lunch at the top of the hill following the race.

Event organizer Sawyer Scott said 100 percent of net proceeds will benefit the Northport Area Heritage Association.

“We plan to work with them to preserve the stories of Northport’s residents, as opposed to simply the objective data like names, places, dates,” Scott said. “We want to juice it up a little bit and help the NAHA document people telling cool, funny or interesting stories that perhaps have less historical or moral value, but are more entertaining and revealing of our community’s character than a history book would be.”

Walks for Labor Day

Interested in stretching your legs a bit? Labor Day weekend is full of walking and running opportunities. Join in!

Saturday 10 a.m. Bay to Braman Bolt - race starts at Marina Park in Northport

10 a.m. Labor Day pre-CROP Walk - starts at Duck Lake end of M204

Sunday 1 p.m. Explore Sleeping Bear - meet at Heritage Trail trailhead in Empire

11:30 a.m. Leland Labor Day Bridge Walk - starts at noon, meet at parking lot behind Blue Bird

Monday 9 a.m. Lake Leelanau Labor Day Bridge Walk - starts at Fig’s

Noon Glen Lake Labor Day Bridge Walk - meet at the Narrows, north side of the bridge

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