North Central Michigan College's Natural Area in Petoskey includes over five miles of trails that run through unique habitats.
Photo by the Little Traverse History Museum
Walk Through Petoskey's Rich History
The rolling hills in the downtown Petoskey area offer a challenge to walkers but an added benefit to a stroll through the city is a look back in time. A walking tour of Petoskey actually is a history lesson as many of the buildings date from the 1870s to the 1930s.lightpost
Begin your tour on the waterfront where the old Chicago and West Michigan Railroad’s Depot is now the Little Traverse History Museum. In the 1890s, the depot was a busy spot as the railway brought freight and passengers to the area. The depot was used through the 1960s and was restored in the 1970s. Artifacts fill the museum and offer a glimpse back in time to the Victoria era.
Walk across the parking lots from the Museum and enter the tunnel under U.S. 31. You’ll be entering the Historic Gaslight District. On the corner of Lake and Petoskey Streets is the site of the business of the son of Chief Pe-to-se-ga, Grandpa Shorter’s. The restored building has been the location of a Petoskey business since the 1880s.
Continue down East Lake Street to Symons General Store. This is an old time general store with a gourmet flare and the structure was Petoskey’s first brick building.
Across the street and just past Pennsylvania Park is the City Park Grill, a restaurant that once included landscaped gardens. The restaurant’s billiards hall and spectacular carved bar was a frequent handout for author and occasional Petoskey resident Ernest Hemingway.
Romanesque architecture is evident in the Penn-Dixie building, next door to the City Park Grill. The arches windows and rusticated sandstone surface were common for buildings of this style.
Mitchell and Division Streets is the location of the Crooked Tree Arts Center. The former United Methodist Church was constructed in the early 1900s and has recently been renovated to include colors that were common in such Gothic Revival architecture.
Next door is the Petoskey library’s Carnegie Building, built in 1909 as the original library.
Across the street the library is housed in the renovated Cook Building. Built in the 1880s, the dramatic facade has graced Mitchell Street for nearly 120 years and has housed many different businesses.
Your tour might include a stop at the Petoskey Regional Chamber of Commerce, at the corner of Mitchell and Howard Streets, where additional walking maps and areas information can be obtained.
Find beauty and relaxation in Petoskey. This 6,000 person community nestled on the shores of Lake Michigan’s Little Traverse Bay is a destination for visitors because it has so much to offer. Read the stories below or go to the Petoskey destination page.
Petoskey, in Northern Michigan, offers fun and eclectic events for people of all ages throughout the year.
Crooked Tree Arts Center is a place where artists from northern Michigan can display their talents and artwork to the public.
Petoskey State Park is one of the premier destinations for campers and outdoor lovers and is tucked away between Petoskey and Harbor Springs.
Harris Gardens at North Central Michigan College is a spectacular sculpture garden filled with 26 pieces of vibrant art.
This 36 acre, 1.5 mile long Bear River Valley in Petoskey is truly spectacular and filled with natural beauty and things to do.
Petoskey is a small community nestled on the shores of Lake Michigan’s Little Traverse Bay and has many activities and attractions to see..
For more information on the history of Petoskey, please contact:
Petoskey Regional Chamber of Commerce
401 E. Mitchell St., Petoskey, MI, 49770
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Activities & Attractions in Northern Michigan
Fisherman’s Island State Park has more than 2,600 acres and miles of gorgeous Lake Michigan beach and is located just south of Charlevoix.
Historic Mill Creek Discover Park has 625 acres along Lake Huron, 3.5 miles of hiking trails, a reconstructed saw mill, mill dam, and more.
North Central Michigan College’s Natural Area in Petoskey includes over five miles of trails that run through unique habitats.
The Andrew J. Blackbird Museum is named for a counselor who helped Native American veterans. Native American artifacts fill the museum space.
The Harbor Springs History Museum offers a unique look at the history of the community, starting with the first Catholic missionaries.
Fort Mackinac is open from May-October and includes buildings restored their original look after the fort’s occupation by the British
The Harsha House and the Charlevoix Depot Museum, run by the Charlevoix Historical Society, preserve much of Charlevoix’s rich history.
The North Country Trail is the longest trail in the U.S. and stretches from North Dakota to New York, passing through Northern Michigan.
The many ski resorts in Northern Michigan have winter activities for the entire family including sledding, sleigh rides, tubing, and more.