Places in Traverse City MI to Visit

Jacob’s Corn Maze – Not just another Corn Maze – It’s an experience



Jacob’s has been owned and operated by the Witkop family since 1892 and is recognized by the State of Michigan’s Historical Commission as a Centennial Farm.StandingJacob – Clear Background

It was in 1879 that Jacob Witkop suffered the loss of his merchant ship after it struck an iceberg and sank off the coast of Russia. Penniless, it took a year to work his way back home to Bierrum, Holland. With the need to establish a new life for his family he gratefully accepted the opportunity to come to America, helping bring a ship filled with hopeful immigrants to the new country. Arriving in America in the spring of 1881, he somehow found his way to Traverse City. Later that year he sent for his wife Pieterke, who was pregnant with their sixth baby, and their other five children. Their voyage across the Atlantic Ocean took six weeks.

For the next few years Jacob made his living working on the railroad and helping lay the first hard surface streets in Traverse City. Pieterke and the children helped where they could with chores such as picking blackberries near the south edge of town on “Boughey Hill”. The boys contributed to the family picking up work which included taking farmers dairy cows down to “East Bay” to water them.

With a dream for their own farm the family saved until they were able to purchase their first farm in 1887. The farm is located on what now is called “Harry’s Road” just a few miles west of Traverse City. Here the family settled in an old house on the site until their new home could be built. By 1892 Jacob was able to acquire his second farm
, just south of the original, which is located on what is now known as State Highway 72.

jacob-spyThe first farm was passed on to Jacob’s son Hiram. The second farm was passed on to his son John and his wife Mary in 1918. On this abundant farm John and Mary raised five children of their own. As the 1900’s progressed there were opportunities for their children to move off the farm and find careers in the expanding American economy. John and Mary’s second son Hiram (named after his uncle Hiram) was asked to serve his country in World War II. This took him away from the farm from 1941 to 1945.

After the war ended Hiram married Jane Nelson of Leland, purchased the farm from his parents and raised four children. In addition to running the farm, Hiram and Jane established Northland Farm Equipment which they operated from the same site for some 35 years until 1983.
In 1995, Hiram and Jane’s only son Michael with his wife Laverna of Interlochen purchased the farm intent on it remaining part of the family. Jacob’s Farm had been owned by the Witkop’s for just over 100 years at that time. Mike and Laverna have kept the farm operating with an eye open for ideas to sustain its agricultural heritage into the future.

Beginning in 2006 they became more intentioned about this quest and began to seek like-minded people to partner in their sustainability effort. Early in the second century of ownership it was becoming increasingly difficult to see how to continue the Jacob’s Farm legacy.

Mike and Laverna launched Jacob’s Farm Enterprises, LLC in early 2008 creating their first maze that Fall. (Taken from their website)

Apple Slinging:

What do we do with apples we cannot use for eating? Why not fire them off at life-sized targets of football players representing Michigan State and Michigan. Its not easy, but it is a blast! The targets are 100 yards away and for some reason apples don’t fly straight! But when they hit the target……….instant apple sauce!


Horse Drawn Wagon Rides


This fall at Jacob’s Corn Maze, they are traveling back in time to the land of ancient Egypt! Their 10-acre corn maze will transport you to the days of pharaohs and mummies.

Looking for a great outdoor fall activity? Here’s why you should stop by Jacob’s this autumn:

A perfect group activity for scouts, schools, youth groups, parties or special events.

Fun for all ages…

Conveniently located between Traverse City and Leelanau County…

Horse-drawn wagon rides, pumpkin patch, apple orchard, and a variety of other attractions Donuts, apple cider and other delicious snacks to enjoy after your maze adventure…

This year, Jacob’s Corn Maze will be open from August 22 through November 1.

Visit their Website: Click Here



An exciting announcement in Traverse City Michigan. A fully accredited bible college is coming January 2015. It is affordable and the schedule is designed for a busy working schedule. This bible college is open to everyone with a Diploma or a GED.

2 Timothy 2:15 (AMP)

Study and be eager and do your utmost to present yourself to God approved (tested by trial), a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, correctly analyzing and accurately dividing [rightly handling and skillfully teaching] the Word of Truth.

2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV)

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

Matthew Henry – And what is their work? It is rightly to divide the word of truth. Not to invent a new gospel, but rightly to divide the gospel that is committed to their trust.

Our work is to rightly divide the word of truth, not to invent new gospels.

From their Website: Grand Traverse Bible College is an extension campus of In Christ International Bible College. ICIBC is fully accredited by the world’s largest non-governmental accrediting organization, Accrediting Commission International. ACI is the accreditation authority for thousands of students in hundreds of schools in 9 countries on 5 continents, and operates in 35 states within the USA (including Washington, D.C.).
Grand Traverse Bible College is a Christian University that offers academic programs that are specifically designed to equip students for the call God has placed on their life. ICIBC is ministerial in nature and is not for persons intending to build secular careers.

Make plans to attend this college….

Visit their website for more information: Click Here

Crusted Creations – A food group all their own

Craig & Len (Craig & Len)

The Best Pizza in town…. We will drive as many miles as it takes to get this pizza.

Voted the best pizza in Grand Traverse County by readers of the Northern Express, we know why….

Craig Greening and his son, Chris, operate Crusted Creations.

Specialty pizza is its top priority…

Crusted Creations more than cheese and sausage

Pizza has been in Craig Greening’s life for almost three-and-a-half decades.

Craig loves his customers. He says it is all about his relationship with them…

It’s also about providing tasty food at a reasonable price.

The best Pizza is the Creative Combo…(we get this pizza every time we are there) This picture says it all…

Creative Combo

They also have BBQ Chicken pizza featuring Sweet Baby Ray’s barbecued chicken, bacon and red onion,Gyro Pizza, topped with tzatziki sauce, gyro meat or chicken, red onions, tomatoes and feta cheese.Crusted Creations even has developed an all-kosher pizza. Six different types of oven-baked subs, gyros, chicken wings, salads and even saucy barbecued ribs highlight the Crusted Creations menu.

Craig said, “I can’t fathom retiring,” “I’ll be working and greeting our customers for at least another 20 years.”

Visit Their Website: Click Here

Like them on Facebook: Click Here



National Cherry Festival & The Blue Angels 2014

National Cherry Festival

The Traverse City Cherry Festival & The Blue Angels

Make plans to come this year to The Traverse City Cherry Festival.

Join us July 5 – 12, 2014

Traverse City & the area around is know for it’s Cherries. Every type of a Cherry dish you can think of. My favorite, Cherry Pie with whip cream. Right along the bay you will find more than 150 events. There is something for everyone of all ages. This is truly a family event.

This event started around 1910 in an informal way, “blessing of the blossoms”.

In 1926, Hawkins Bakery in Traverse City baked a huge cherry pie and presented it to U.S. President Calvin Coolidge. The pie, being three feet in diameter and containing more than 5,000 cherries, had to be loaded into a car through the windshield and into the back seat. (Taken from their website)

There was many stages of the event & it changed in many ways.

The National Cherry Festival was suspended during the World War II (1942-47), but it has been held continuously every year since. 1946 was considered too soon after the War, and in 1947 Traverse City celebrated its Centennial; so the National Cherry Festival was postponed until 1948. The National Cherry Festival set a world record by baking the world’s largest cherry pie on July 25, 1987. The pie was 17 ft 6 in and weighed in at 28,350 pounds. (Taken from their website)

Now the festival is a week long.

Check out a their Website: Click Here

I enjoy playing bingo with my Mother-in-Law. But my favorite part is when the Blue Angels come. They are coming this year…. YEA

Ultimate Selfie

U.S. Navy Blue Angels take to the Skies July 4, 5 and 6.

The Blue Angels started in Jacksonville, FL on June 15, 1946. Their mission is to increase the pride that American people have for the Untied States Navy. They inspire men & women to serve their country.

Check out their website: Click Here
Blue Angels

Each member of the Blue Angels volunteer for duty. They feel it is an honor to be a part of this team. I sure enjoy watching them perform all the tricks. They are so close together as they go right over the water, it’s so cool. I love the sound of FREEDOM as they go over our heads. Make plans today….

Watch the below video from 2010. It was great how they flew right over our heads… It really does make me proud to be an AMERICAN…. I love our service members, who help our country to be FREE….

2010 Blue Angels in Traverse City

Traverse City State Hospital – The Commons

State Hospital

Winter Time

One of our favorite places to go in Traverse City, MI is The Grand Traverse Commons. It used to be The Traverse City State Hospital – Northern Michigan Asylum.

Information from their website:

“The Village is the unique renovation of dozens of historic buildings formerly known as the Traverse City State Hospital, and previously, the Northern Michigan Asylum. The auspicious location of this 63-acre site, centered in one of the Midwest’s most desirable locations, underscores the unparalleled beauty of magnificent, century-old Victorian-Italianate architecture.”

The Village is conveniently nestled among 480 acres of preserved parkland, which is riddled with groomed trails and breathtaking wildlife. Whether you enjoy hiking, jogging, biking, snowshoeing, or cross-country skiing, there is bound to be a trail that’s just perfect for you! Walk your dog, visit the famous “Hippie Tree,” or just take a leisurely stroll along Kid’s Creek with somebody special on one of the beautiful Commons Trails.

Take a guided tour into historic unrenovated buildings and the underground tunnel system of the former Traverse City State Hospital.

Check out their Website: Click Here

They have made shops,homes, & so much more. We love going to the Farm market, walk through the trails, & just spending time at The Commons. We also take the time to hand out tracks & free music to those we meet along the way. We have taken many pictures….

TC State Hospital The Commons Winter Time
Spring More pictures

Click Here for a 360 look. Another one click here

Traverse City State Hospital (Retro Look)

The Hippie Tree at Traverse City State Hospital grounds 2011

Our hike through the Traverse City State Hospital Grounds 2011

Len and Angie first spring hike in 2012….. Plus a quick drive around: Here goes nothing Now…..

One of our many hikes to the hippie tree on the grounds of the old State Hospital.