Saturday, February 27, 2010

Thursday, February 25, 2010


Many of the buildings and businesses I remember growing up have either been torn down or remodeled to look completely different. Round's Home Cooking is the exception. It's one refreshing constant in a world of frequent change. I never thought I would use the word 'refreshing' to describe this restaurant. Don't get me wrong- Round's serves down home cooking at it's finest. It does simple breakfast meals and it does that very well. For example, look at Tuesday's featured meal in the lower left portion of the image. Any restaurant that has the confidence to 'feature' corned beef & cabbage is okay by me.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Winter Orchard

Here's the scene out on the peninsula of a cherry orchard doing what it does in the winter.

Sunday, February 21, 2010


A store I passed. Looks like business hasn't been too good. However, they've mounted a snowmobile on top of a pole, also, they have a sign advertising t-shirts AND sweatshirts so that gets a photo in my book.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


This is from one of my 'wanderings' around TC. It's obviously not very journalistic but there's something liberating about just taking photos of whatever comes into view. Especially when it's winter out. There's so much brown, black and grey color everywhere, as well as constant cold weather, that it becomes simple to sit inside and not take photos. So I guess that liberating 'something' is freedom to take pictures of whatever I want. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to work on stories and do great documentary projects and I plan to. For now though, that liberating 'something' is creative freedom and it feels good.

Monday, February 15, 2010


This is from a trip I took tonight driving around town. This semi trailer is behind an old car repair garage along Grandview Parkway.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Color TV

This is part of a motel sign which promotes their RCA color televisions. A guy at the motel was interested in what I was up to as I was standing in the snow taking photos of his old sign. He didn't say anything but he was watching from afar, and of course who can blame him?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Traverse Colantha Walker

UPDATE: I know a lot about the area but this is a first. Today while looking over some history on the State Hospital, I came across some info that a world-champion cow was buried there. Along with cows, the State Hospital also had orchards of fruit and gardens of vegetables. I had no idea about this bovine burial site though. I fired up the Subaru and drove down there. The exact location of the site was a mystery to me so I headed in the direction of the buildings that were once the livestock barns. I drove up a small incline and there it was. Nestled between two large pine trees was the granite gravestone of Traverse Colantha Walker, overlooking the fields she once roamed. The numbers speak for themselves. 200,114.9 pounds of milk, 7,525.8 pounds of butterfat and nine lactations. That was one happy cow. TCW you are the standard by which all other Holstein-Friesian dairy cows will be judged.

Mental Institution

This is the old Traverse City State Hospital. In the photo is just one building on the hospital grounds which has many buildings. It was a mental asylum back in the day. The place was self sustaining so it had it's own electric generator, farm (apparently the grave of a world champion milk cow from here, is buried on the property- if I find it, I'll post an update), etc. My mom worked at this place when she was just out of nursing school. The place opened in 1885 and closed in 1989.

When my friends and I were younger we, along with lots of other people, would go exploring on the grounds. It had the most amazing mystique. There are tunnels underground going from building to building, wide off-white hallways and everything else you'd expect in an asylum.

Looking through a lot of the windows would deliver chills. It's been abandoned for some time now and it's undergoing a large renovation. The place is boarded up tighter than a snare drum now. In the sections that are renovated there's an art gallery, restaurant, wine room and lots of other business moving in. I'll always call it the State Hospital though and to me it'll always be spooky.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

White Pine Stampede

This is the White Pine Stampede, a cross country ski race that has taken place around the same time each year for the past 34 years. Not a bad run. I shot it once in 2006 when I interned at the Traverse City Record-Eagle. What made it fun shooting photos this year though was that I shot it for myself. There's a lot to be said for taking pictures when a deadline isn't looming.

Sunday, February 07, 2010


Here's a scene from Rapid City, MI I spotted as I was driving through it the other day.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Red Barn

I shot this yesterday between Mancelona and Alden.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Long Lake

There was a good portion of time where I really didn't like to ice fish. It's never been too hard for me to think of something better to do than stare at a hole in the ice. However, I enjoy hanging out with my friends and having a couple brews. If a fish, or two, grab a line, then that's great, but I never go into the situation expecting a great catch, or any catch at all. This was the case yesterday while fishing with my friend Seth out on Long Lake. We've been friends for about 25 years. He's like a brother and he's someone I'll go ice fishing with. One fish was caught, by him, but it was fun nonetheless. This is Seth pulling the shanty out. I pulled it back when it was time to leave.

Monday, February 01, 2010

Up North

After being gone from northern Michigan for a while, everything seems the same yet different. The sameness is there because I'm from the area. Things are different because being gone for a while, then returning, puts everything I'm used to into a different perspective. For example, things I'd take for granted before seem a little more interesting now. It's funny how returning to a place you've lived your whole life, especially when it's a small town, can look different.