The morning’s complimentary repast continued the Michigan theme of “Do It Yourself.” We crept into the dimly-lit office and filled Styrofoam cups with coffee beneath a sign reading, “Please do not fill Thermoses with coffee.” The pastry breakfast consisted of one’s choice of individually-wrapped pastries from a basket. The offerings included one (1) big cinnamon roll, one (1) “Breakfast Claw,” three “Berry Horns,” and three “Glazed Doughnuts.” The boys took a pass on these gustatory delights in favor of string cheese and cheese-flavored crackers from the snacks we had in the trunk.

We left the hotel 45 minutes ahead of schedule, which gave us time to photograph a large yellow dinosaur with creepy red eyes that we encountered along US-31. (44.482430,-86.115479).

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Our first destination was the Guinness Book of World Records-certified World’s Largest Cherry Pie Pan in Traverse City, Michigan (44.736293,-85.625188). I should clarify, I think, that the record is actually for the World’s Largest Cherry Pie, but I guess that there’s only so long you can display pie without violating some health standards. Thus the display of the empty pan.

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We felt that it just wasn’t right to visit Michigan and not photograph some of the spectacular wildlife, so we stopped to see a big swan in Elk Rapids (44.896061,-85.409584).

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Katherine used the opportunity to demonstrate her excellent animal-handling skills.

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