Imagine a lot of trees, a lot of bugs, a lot of lakes and a dream. A dream to secure land, work the land, and claim it as your own. A very familiar dream within this country’s history and Pinckney, Michigan is no different. 175 years is young compared to Rome, but quite old compared to The United States of America.
These old towns give us a chance to quietly stand on Main Street, close our eyes and picture horse-drawn carriages clopping through town on muddy roads. Maybe you’ve imagined workmen installing the towns first telephone poles as citizens watch nearby in anticipation of the first ever telephone service. Imagine the conversations!
Maybe you hear a train whistle in the background as the train pulls into the station not far from Main Street to unload its cargo of people and provisions. Women with large hats and Victorian dresses step off the train with the help of a gentleman’s hand, as she grabs her skirt so it doesn’t fall into the wet gravel that lay beneath the bottom step. If its June (in Michigan), there’s probably a lot of mud due to the heavy rains of April and May. Amidst the burning coal, you get a hint of wild honeysuckle every now and then. The woman comments, “it’s really greening up here, quick Charles, let’s get home so we can hear the birds.” It’s difficult to hear birds over train noise, the din of people conversing, and horses.
These are not experiences a mere textbook can provide. This is why communities such as Pinckney, Michigan plan long celebrations that involve all facets of the community. It gives us a chance to observe history with all of the five senses. It provides an opportunity for all age groups to inter-mingle and hear stories about the area that have been handed down for many generations. Current residents can stand in the Village Square while looking at old photographs of the Main Street buildings which are still standing directly across the street from the Village Square, and contrast how it looks now compared to how it looked “then.” The mud, the awnings and the horses are gone, but we always have our imagination.
Pinckney, Michigan is a lake town, surrounded by many beautiful fresh-water, inland lakes with boating, camping and parks. Sometimes they’re shadowed in the media by the near-by Hell, Michigan – famous for its name of course. Legend says it got its name because they had the only saloon in the area, so when asked where your husband was, a wife might reply, “Aw he’s gone to Hell.” Some of the stories are filled with anger and controversy, some are filled with love and remembrance – such the human condition.
This June 25 -27, 2010, Pinckney, Michigan will host “Celebrate Pinckney 175” Community Festival. The home base for this festival will be in the Village Square just off Main Street (M-36) in the downtown area.
On Friday they will host Mural painting, Birthday cake contest judging, Pinckney’s Got Talent and Movies in the Park.
On Saturday, they will host a Pancake breakfast, a Parade, Music, Dancers, a Run/Walk, Bike inspections, Pet activities, Water ball, and Hootin’ in the Park. They will also continue Mural Painting and Pinckney’s Got Talent. But, of course, you can’t celebrate history without some walking tours of the old homes and cemetery. Homes tour will be at 10am, cemetery tour will be at 3pm.
On Sunday Mural painting and Pinckney’s Got Talent will finish up and another Breakfast will be provided. Also a Polish dinner, Polish band and Karaoke to benefit cancer.
If your local to the area, save this weekend for Pinckney’s “Grand” celebration. If you are not local, use this itinerary as suggestions for your own hometown celebration.
Being this is Michigan, I’ll leave you with this from an old Michigander to a potential one,” baseball, hot dogs, apple pie, and Chevrolet – or Ford or Chrysler or anything else automobile for that matter.” But, when you think of Michigan, include miles and miles of coastline, lighthouses, dense forests, peninsulas, fudge, cherries, apples, shipwreck museums, fishing, golf, skiing, and on, and on, and on.