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The Mackinac Bridge
Tuesday, Sep 18, 2007 from Baraga, Michigan
Posted: Sep 18, 2007 | 424 words | 3 Comments
A few months ago I wrote a blog about a “Michigan finale”. At the time I thought I would be lucky to pull off any of them. At another point it looked as though they all might come true. Well one of them has, and I thought it would be the hardest one to pull off: going to the very top of the Mackinac Bridge.
The Mackinac Bridge is Michigan’s greatest and most recognizable asset. It graces many Michigan license plates and every book, brochure, and pamphlet on Michigan tourism. However, few Americans know much about the Mackinac Bridge and only few Michiganders from the Lower Peninsula cross the 5-mile span. Even though it is larger than the famous Golden Gate Bridge, the Mackinac gets much less notice since it is not in a major destination city like San Francisco. This is the 50th anniversary of the Mackinac Bridge and has thousands of cars cross every day since 1957. Excluding this last year, I have probably crossed the bridge at least a handful of times or more every year of my life.
So, today shortly after 9am I found myself on the very top of the Mackinac Bridge on the south tower, 552 feet above the water. I’ve been to the top of the Eiffel Tower, Sears Tower, Space Needle, and Empire State Building, and none of these compare to this experience.
As the story goes I posted that blog a while ago. My father has also always wanted to go to the top of the bridge. He’s a member of the Michigan Forests Association which every year has an auction to raise money. They were given a certificate for a tower tour of the bridge. Well, at the auction, my dad’s good friend Dave got up and announced to everyone, “If we take a hat and pass it around we can all raise money for this and donate this certificate to Justin.” All these people I had never met, they heard my story, and they raised $400 (twice as much as it every went for before) to donate this certificate to me. This is one of many stories of the things people have done for me on this trip. I am blown away by the kindness of strangers and how people have done so much for a guy who had a dream. So thank you to everyone who pitched in a dollar here or there. It was a huge dream on my part made possible by everyone else who took part in it.
Comment by Robert
From Denver, CO
OK Bugsy, I'll forgive you since you're from the western end of the U.P, but the correct spelling is "Mackinac" in all cases EXCEPT Mackinaw City. ;-) So, did they make you walk up the cable, or were they nice and let you take the elevator?
Comment by Bugsy
From Baraga, MI
thanks Robert! All fixed
Comment by Barb
From L'Anse across the bay from Baraga, MI
Hey Bugsy, 50 years ago our family (7) of drove to St. Ignace. My dad said, Barb, I want to be the first in our family to drive across the Big Mac! Yikes! I was 17 and I loved it and I still get a thrill driving across the beast! So I guess now you know how young I am.....smiles and hugs....thanks too, for the ride in the Jeep! Rice, Lowell and I had great fun. Good memories. B and L