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Walking the Lake Michigan beach — a public right, or trespassing?

It’s common knowledge that the public can walk along the Lake Michigan shoreline. You can walk it anywhere on public property. That means public road ends, or the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. The question is: how far from the water’s edge can a person legally walk along private property? This is an important issue, since about 70 percent of Michigan’s “third coast” is privately owned. The answer is unclear, because neither courts in Michigan nor in other Great Lakes states have offered a clear and consistent answer.


Revisiting the Empire shoreline—beach boulders, concrete slabs, and high water

Decades after writing the piece “Wind, waves and healing solitude,” I revisit the shoreline to the bluffs along Lake Michigan accessed from the south end of Empire beach. Years ago, in order to protect the shoreline there were concrete slabs positioned at a steep angle so that it became a tricky maneuver to reach the shore. Agile younger folks managed by using quick running steps over the slabs. This old lady found that going backwards on all fours was the safest way down. Fortunately, sand was recently piled atop the slabs affording easier access to the shore.


Private beach wall could dramatically change Empire shoreline

The Storm Hill Homeowners Association, whose properties are located on the high ground between Empire’s public beach and the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore’s Empire Bluff, applied in June to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for a permit to armor the base of their bluff near the shoreline with a 740-foot-long steel seawall along 6 properties—that’s the length equivalent of 2.5 football fields.


Glen Lake Community Library holds biennial home tour

It’s the event the community has been waiting for The Glen Lake Community Library’s Home Tour includes five diverse residences that span the architectural sphere, from an old log cabin on Inspiration Point built in the 1920s to a “green” home built two years ago. These and three other unique homes will be open to the community for the tour. One of the homes is a gorgeous farmhouse complete with barns and gardens, all accessible. There is a beautiful Nantucket-style country home on Big Glen Lake, and a charming summer cottage on Little Glen. Something for everyone, to be sure.