Michigan

Mackinac Island: The Jewel of Michigan

Program No. 1575RJ
Mackinac Island has been a fur trading post, Revolutionary War site, Victorian resort destination and much more. Join us as we explore the history of this small island with a big story.

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At a Glance

Explore the treasures of Mackinac Island as you delve into the island's glorious history, geology, natural beauty, architecture and modern life. Discover old-world traditions as you learn about the island's early economic and military importance as well as its development as a Victorian resort. Customs and cultures will come alive through lectures and field trips with local residents and area experts. A field trip to Fort Mackinac and a carriage ride around the island will enhance your visit.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking 1–2 miles per day. Paved and unpaved roads, some hilly terrain, stairs.

What You'll Learn

  • Learn during a carriage ride about the value of the horses.
  • Explore the island's beautiful natural spaces up close on a walk with a naturalist.
  • Find out why Mackinac’s Victorian homes are an important part of island history on a field trip with the Deputy Director of Mackinac State Historic Parks.

General Notes

Select dates are designated for small groups and are limited to 24 participants or less. Transportation by foot, horse-drawn carriage, bike.
Featured Expert
All trip experts
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Katie Mallory
Katie Mallory worked for Mackinac State Historic Parks for 26 seasons. She started as a Historic House Interpreter in college and worked her way through to a full-time position as Museum Educator and Curator of Education. Katie oversaw programming at Fort Mackinac, Historic Downtown Buildings, Mackinac Art Museum, and the Mackinac Island Scout Service Camp. She has a degree in Secondary Education in History and Social Sciences and taught in Spring Lake and Detroit. Katie loves travel and believes it’s the best form of education.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Jeff Dykehouse
Jeff Dykehouse View biography
Jeff Dykehouse has worked for the Mackinac State Historic Parks (MSHP) since 1983 and is the Curator of Natural History for the MSHP. Trained as a biologist, he has worked as an interpretive naturalist, environmental educator, research biologist, and audiovisual specialist for a number of Michigan’s State and National Parks. Jeff has been a “birder” all his life and has had a master Federal Bird Banding permit for over 30 years. Jeff lives on the shore of Lake Huron near Cheboygan with his wife Laurie (a middle school science teacher) and their three children.
Profile Image of Moira Croghan
Moira Croghan View biography
Moira Croghan started coming to Mackinac Island in the summers with her family when she was eight weeks old and has returned every year since. In 2011, she moved to Mackinac Island. Moira has a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and biology and earned a master’s from the University Of Michigan School Of Natural Resources. For three decades, Moira oversaw the Commonwealth of Virginia’s water pollution control and land use management programs, conducting strategies to improve water quality through education, regularity programs, permits, and enforcement.
Profile Image of Katie Mallory
Katie Mallory View biography
Katie Mallory worked for Mackinac State Historic Parks for 26 seasons. She started as a Historic House Interpreter in college and worked her way through to a full-time position as Museum Educator and Curator of Education. Katie oversaw programming at Fort Mackinac, Historic Downtown Buildings, Mackinac Art Museum, and the Mackinac Island Scout Service Camp. She has a degree in Secondary Education in History and Social Sciences and taught in Spring Lake and Detroit. Katie loves travel and believes it’s the best form of education.
Profile Image of Alyssa Connolly
Alyssa Connolly View biography
Dr. Alyssa Connolly graduated from Michigan State University in 2003 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree. She started a mobile veterinary practice in 2004 and is now a veterinarian in Pinckney, Michigan, primarily treating equine patients as well as mixed farm animals and companion animals. Dr. Connolly grew up in Howell, Michigan, gaining experience with horses from childhood. She got her first pony at age six and started to show in 4-H not long after.
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