Absolute Michigan's Michigan Blog
Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Five Things You Need to Know About Michigan

For those who haven't noticed, Pittsburgh Steelers running back Jerome Bettis is a native of Detroit. No offense to Jerome, the Bettis family or MacKenzie High School, but if that's the story that the rest of the world takes home from Super Bowl XL, we in Michigan have done a poor job of telling you who we are.

Here are some things we really think you need to know about Detroit and the state of Michigan. We hope you will read these over, add your own and send this message along to others in and out of the media.

1 A Whole Lot of Wonderful People Call Detroit & Michigan Home

The list includes football player George Gipp aka "the Gipper", Bobby Layne, Earvin "Magic" Johnson, Detroit Pistons (past & present), Ty Cobb, Kirk Gibson, Joe Louis, Sugar Ray Robinson, Thomas Hearns, Muhammad Ali, Gordie Howe and Serena Williams. Outside of the world of sports are folks like President Gerald Ford, Malcolm X, Chief Pontiac, Sojourner Truth, Harriet Quimby, Charles Lindbergh, Ernest Hemingway, Bruce Catton, Robert Traver, Jim Harrison, Francis Ford Coppola, James Earl Jones, Lily Tomlin, Jeff Daniels, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, Eminem, Ted Nugent, Berry Gordy Jr., Elijah McCoy, William Boeing, Henry Ford, W. K. Kellogg, Lee Iacocca, William Upjohn, and those are just a few of our more famous citizens. On any street in any city or town in Michigan there are exceptional people who work hard every day on the behalf of their families and communities.

2 They Don't Call Detroit the Motor City for Nothing

In the first part of the 20th Century, Detroit became synonymous with the automobile. For over 100 years, entrepreneurs like Henry Leland, Ransom E. Olds, John and Horace Dodge and Henry Ford and the companies they founded drove Detroit, Michigan and the nation with innovations like the assembly line, minimum wage and rebates. During World War II, the Motor City retooled for the war effort. Now the auto industry and its workers are facing the hardest times yet ... we could use a little less "woulda, coulda, shoulda" and a little more help with addressing difficult issues like cheap foreign labor & materials, skyrocketing insurance and benefits, and the cost of transforming to meet the needs of the modern world.

3 ...but Cars Aren't the Only Things Made in Michigan

Michigan's agricultural industry grows everything from corn and soybeans to cherries and gourmet mushrooms and also adds turns grapes into wine and markets a host of other food products. We are home to companies large and small that are manufacturing a wide range of products including furniture, appliances, airplanes and food products and also performing vital exploration in life sciences, alternative energy and bio-technology. Our state government is offering phenomenal business incentives and our trained workforce can assist any venture.

4 Michigan is Beautiful ... and a Whole Lot of Fun

Surrounding Michigan is the water of four mighty Great Lakes: Erie, Huron, Superior & Michigan and amidst it are over 11,000 inland lakes and 36,000 miles of streams. You are never more than six miles from water in Michigan and our coastline is as long as the distance from Maine to Florida. In addition to all this water are millions of acres of forest, parkland, dunes and beach - all providing countless opportunities for fishing, hunting, hiking, biking, skiing, sailing, boating and more. When the weather isn't as nice, we have museums, performing halls, galleries and a host of other cultural experiences for all ages.

5 ???

The fifth thing, we're leaving up to you. For that matter, feel free to change any or all of the preceding points. The important thing is to take some time to tell people what you think they really need to know about the state of Michigan.

If you would, please send us an email (or post a comment) with that fifth thing so we can keep a list for folks to read at Absolute Michigan.

Read More (external link) »

# posted by farlane @ 3:28 PM
Mac emailed:

...that 5th thing - for me it has to be Contrasts, from Frankenmuth
to Detroit to Grand Rapids to Mackinac, a brushstroke through incredible diversity.
What a State.

Think Global Surf Local.

Right on, Mac.
# posted by Blogger farlane : 6:49 PM  
Adding to #4, most people don't realize that Michigan is by far the largest state east of the Mississippi. Michigan encompasses 96,810 square miles, much more than Florida at 65,758 square miles, Wisconsin at 65,503 square miles, and Georgia at 59,441 square miles. (One odd thing, though, is Georgia claims to be the largest state east of the Mississippi.)
# posted by Anonymous Anonymous : 11:52 AM  
#5 Great Sports Town! Michigan is home to awesome sport teams including the Pistons, Red Wings, Lions (well we like to go to the games), Tigers (fun stadium), and exciting college teams like MSU and U of M!
# posted by Anonymous Jovina : 2:40 PM  
Adding to #4, Michigan has many top-notch art shows and music festivals. Some of these events rank with the best of the best in the country.

To name a few: Ann Arbor Street Art Fair, Detroit International Jazz Festival, Gilmore International Keyboard Festival, Wheatland Music Festival, National Cherry Festival, Great Lakes Folk Festival, Many festivals celebrating our agricultural products etc....
# posted by Anonymous Anonymous : 4:46 PM  
Michigan has pockets of wonderful flavors, ethnicity, and taste. Greek town in Detroit offers cultural smells of lamb and flaming cheese, with tastes of ouzo spilling from the lips of laughing people. Try a burrito in the Mexican village area. Did you go to Hamtramck for a genuine polish sausage or travel to Cedar for the polish festival for pierogi? Did someone say Pasty? Oh yeah, that would be the famous meat/potato/rutabaga pastry pocket found north of the greatest suspension bridge known to human civilization. German taste can be found in Gaylord and Frankenmuth. Did someone say Dutch? Go to Holland. That would be in Michigan. Oh, yeah. I forgot to say about the large amounts of Middle Eastern culture. Not only did the Iraqi's have an influence, but they voted for the current government in Iraq today. Michigan is a place where the world has laid its finest people together for the opportunity to show their pride in their heritage and their ability to meld into a strong backbone for what the United States really stands.
# posted by Blogger TCWTITAN : 11:44 PM  
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