GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Happy National Michigan Day!
In 2017, the National Day Calendar began celebrating each state in the order it entered the union, starting the week of Independence Day and ending the celebration with Hawaii.
Jan. 18 is the day to celebrate the Mitten State, which in 1837 became the 26th state to enter the union.
Here’s a look at a number of things worth celebrating about Michigan.
TWO PENINSULAS AND THE BRIDGE THAT CONNECTS THEM
Michigan is the only state in the nation to consist of two peninsulas, the Upper Peninsula and Lower Peninsula, which are connected by the Mackinac Bridge (aka the Mighty Mac).
The Mackinac Bridge opened on Nov. 1, 1957 and is the longest suspension bridge in the Western Hemisphere and fifth longest in the world. More information can be found at mackinacbridge.org.
THEY’RE FROM MICHIGAN?
Former President Gerald R. Ford was from Michigan and grew up in Grand Rapids, though he was born in Omaha, Nebraska. Ford was a 13-term U.S. House representative and the first vice president to be nominated under the 25th Amendment. He became president when Richard Nixon resigned on Aug. 9, 1974, in the wake of the Watergate scandal. He lost reelection in 1976. For more information on Ford, head to history.house.gov.
Henry Ford, inventor of the Model T, was born in Dearborn. He invented the “Quadricycle” in 1896, which was a prototype for his first car. In 1903, he founded the Ford Motor Company. Just two months later, he assembled the first Ford car in Detroit, the Model A. He invented the moving assembly line, cutting production time from 12 hours per car to an hour and 33 minutes.
“Ford was dedicated to the production of an efficient and reliable automobile that would be affordable for everyone; the result was the Model T, which made its debut in October 1908,” the History Channel said on its website.
The state has been the birth place for a number of famous celebrities. From Tim Allen and Eminem to Kristen Bell and Kid Rock, the has left a mark on Hollywood. Visit IMDB to see who else is from Michigan.
NO CARS AND BREATHTAKING VIEWS
For centuries, visitors have headed north to the small, picturesque Island of Mackinac. With no cars, no chain hotels and breathtaking views, the island allows guests to make memories that last a lifetime.
From world-famous Mackinac Island Fudge to the historic Fort Mackinac, the island has something for everyone.
The 1979 film “Somewhere in Time” took place on Mackinac Island and featured the Grand Hotel, which boasts the world’s longest porch.
Learn more about Mackinac Island at mackinacisland.org.
Take a tour around Michigan:
Michigan fun facts:
- Nicknames: the Mitten state, the Great Lake state, the Wolverine state and more.
- Motto: Si quaeris peninsulam amoenam circumspice (“If you seek a pleasant peninsula, look about you”)
- Capital: Lansing (Formerly in Detroit from 1828-1847)
- Michigan is the nation’s longest freshwater coastline and contains 80% of North America’s fresh water supply.
- Great Lakes touching Michigan: Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, Lake Superior and Lake Erie.
- Flower: Apple Blossom
- Bird: Robin
- Tree: White Pine
- Stone: Petoskey Stone
- Home to seven national parks