Thursday, January 10, 2019

TBT: Bathing Beach Port Huron, Michigan

Let's take a second and pretend it's not a cold winter day today. Instead, let's imagine it is summer.

For this Throwback Thursday here's a postcard from the early 1900's featuring a day at the beach in Port Huron to help with that thought.

Monday, November 5, 2018

Santa Claus Is Coming To Town

Two things we all must remember this time of the year. That is to not pout or cry. Why? Because Santa Claus is coming to town.

As we all know before he makes his rounds dropping off gifts to good little boy and girls on Christmas eve, he likes to check in to places before that to make sure everyone is behaving. Thanks to some connections we have at the North Pole, we're able to let you know when and where some of those stops will be in the Blue Water Area.

St. Nick's first stop will be in St. Clair on Friday, November 16th at 6pmAfter riding his sleigh down S. Riverside Street in the parade, he'll be given the key to the city and then the tree at Palmer Park will be lit.

His next visit will be the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, November 20th when he stops in to help ring in the excitement of the season during Marine City’s Lighted Santa Parade!  

The night after Thanksgiving, November 23rd, Santa kicks off the official start of the holiday season in the city of Port Huron with a parade too. Following the city's parade, he'll throw the switch that lights the McMorran Christmas Tree and leads the crowd in singing holiday carols. 

After a week back up at the North Pole he returns to the Blue Water Area to check on all the good girls and boys in Marysville on Saturday, December 1st at 5pm their annual parade

The jolly man in the red suit has a bit of a tight schedule on that Saturday because he's also part of Harbor Beach's Annual Lighted Christmas Parade which starts at 5:30 on Trescott St.

Saint Nick gives his reindeer a night off on Wednesday, December 5th and arrives on the back of a decorated in lights antique tractor for Algonac's Santa Parade and Tree Lighting.

On Saturday, December 8th, you may not see reindeer in Lexington but you will see a lot of four-legged creatures into the spirit of the season at the Lexington Old Fashioned Christmas Horse Parade. It starts at 2pm.

To find out about all the things happening around the Blue Water Area during the holiday season check out our events page.

Monday, October 8, 2018

Where's the scares? Here's some October frightful fun for the Blue Water Area!

Halloween is creeping up closer every day. The ghosts and ghouls will be making the bumps in the night often through the month of October and the Blue Water Area has quite a few things happening where you can be part of a hauntingly good time.

The buildings of the Sanilac County Historical Village and Museum in Port Sanilac all have a storied past. Did you know some of them might be ghost stories though? On the evenings of Saturday, October 13th and the 20st, spirits of the past lurk the grounds and structures at the Haunted Village and Spook Walk. Come warm up around the bonfire and sample goodies at the Food Boooooth after getting chills from a walk through the cemetery in the woods and meeting the likes Wicked Witch, Dr. Loop, the Mad Hatter and the Grim Reaper.

Would you like to take a straaange journey? How about one into the world’s favorite rock’n’roll musical! The Rocky Horror Show Live! returns for its eighth season to the McMorran Place Theatre in Port Huron. Running October 19th, 20th, 26th and 27th, tickets are now available at the McMorran box office and Ticketmaster. Come down and be a part of one of the Bluewater Area's favorite Halloween traditions!

It's wouldn't be Halloween without a hayride and a corn maze at an apple orchard...especially if they're said to be haunted. On Friday and Saturday evenings through October 27th, McCallum's Orchard in Grant Twp. will be presenting Haunted Nights. Find out more about the frightful family fun here.

As Count Dracula begins to exert his will upon the residents of London, they try to piece together the clues of his appearances—in a valiant attempt to save themselves from a hideous fate. Rich with both humor and horror, this stageplay at the Citadel Stage in Port Huron paints a wickedly theatrical picture of Stoker's famous vampire. This production runs through the month of October. Get your tickets here.

What would October be without some scary movies? This year enjoy two full nights of them at two different locations in Port Huron. Desmond District Demons will be presenting horrifying competition of independently produced horror films from all around the world at the Sperry’s Moviehouse on the 26th & 27th. Check out what movies will be showing and how to get tickets at the Desmond District Demons website.

On the last Saturday of October (and just a couple days before the trick or treaters come to your door) enjoy Halloween in Lexington with Children's Costume Parade, Pet Costume Parade, Children's Activities & More!

Also on October 27th, Port Huron City Rec invites lovers of candy to join them at Sanborn Park at 10am for a Halloween Stroll. To register for this event click here.

To find out more about these happenings along with plenty of other things going on around the area you can Discover The Blue at our events page.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Sound The Horn! It's Time For Whistles On The Water

One of the sounds that was characteristic of the shoreline of the Blue Water Area for centuries was that of steam-powered freighters sounding their whistles.

In the 19th and early 20th century when steamships were the royalty of Great Lakes trade, Ship captains would tune their steam whistles to create a unique sound so that their ship could be identified before it could be seen.  The whistle’s unique sound allowed another ship captain to identify the ship in bad weather and let people on shore know which ship was docking.

As the stream driven vessels gave way to petroleum powered engines, the steam whistle also found itself being replaced with horns and sirens to signal their positions and other notifications to fellow boats and people along the shore. With modern technology such as GPS doing the work these days, even those sounds have become heard less save for foggy conditions, to alert wayward boats that may be in the fishing channels or as a greeting to other ships they may pass.

This Saturday in St. Clair you can hear the sounds of those bygone days at Whistles On The Water. Powered by a giant custom-made steam generator, a plethora of steam whistles will be sounded as well as the history of each whistle given and what different series of toots and blasts meant a message being sent out. One of the crowd favorites whistles includes a whistle that was originally on The Boblo boat SS Columbia. It also really cool when a passing freighter sounds their horn back to those on shore checking out the event.

Along with the many whistles that will be sounded off by the professional collectors, the general public can have a chance to blow off steam along Palmer Park's boardwalk with a variety of smaller whistles too.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Boat The Blue in Port Huron this weekend

When crossing over Port Huron's 7th and 10th street bridges this week, your eyes may spot what looks like quite a few vessels dating from the 1940's and possibly even before.

Be assured, your eyes are not deceiving you as Port Huron is the host city for the Antique & Classic Boat Society's International Boat Show this year.

Dubbed Boat The Blue, this event will bring around 200 classic and vintage boats to the Blue Water Area, for a week full of events for its owners and then caps off with open the public show at Port Huron's River Street Marina this Friday and Saturday.

Among the events for the free show this weekend include a Cruiser Open House on Friday and Saturday from 11am – 2pm. There will free boat rides in a classic boat on Saturday from at that time as well.

Events for children including toy boat painting, face painting, Tootsie the clown, minnow races, knot tying, and much more are available on Saturday from 11am-2am.  Free Parking is located at the St. Clair Community College.  A vendor area featuring boat related art, crafts, parts as well as food and drinks will also be available.

Many of the boats on display this week do have plenty Blue Water Area history connected to them.

At the age of 13, Christopher Columbus Smith built his first boat in the city of Algonac. By 1881, his skiffs had been known across the Great Lakes, so he and his brother Frank went into building boats full time. In 1922, Smith and his family formed the Chris Smith and Son Boat Company, producing fast and economically priced runabouts for the general public. During World War II the company, now known as Chris Craft, the company 12,000 military vessels such as patrol boats, utility launches, and rescue vessels for the United States Navy and Army.

Following World War II, the American economy started to grow immensely. Families had more money to spend on fun things.  Boats were high on a lot of people's lists and the company's vessels, from the finest mahogany, their boats were considered to be the best available.

In 1948, Algonac based boat company Chris Craft promoted their new lines of pleasure boats for that year with this ad geared to those who were looking for to enjoy time out on the water.

Though Chris Craft built custom vessels for superstars such as Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley, even their lower-priced boats were known for their high quality by using woods like mahogany and teak as well as having many luxury items most other boats did not come with. Within ten years Chris Craft became virtually synonymous with pleasure boating, offering 159 different models and became the sales leader in many categories of small civilian powerboats.

Photo by Dale Merrill

If you're going to be checking out the boats docked at the marina this week or weekend and posting photos of them on Instagram or Twitter, don't forget to use the hashtags #BoatTheBlue and #DiscoverTheBlue when sharing them. On Instagram, you can also tag them with @boattheblue and @discoverthebluewaterarea.

Find out more about the 2018 Antique and Classic Boat Society International Boat Show: Boat The Blue at their website.