Linda Alice Dewey’s painting “Christmas in Cedar, not long ago” is a collaboration with Anne-Marie Oomen’s poem, “Solstice”

The iconic Cedar Tavern in the heart of Leelanau County hit the market this week with a listing price of $1.2 million. Owner Ellen Stachnik confirmed the news on Facebook: “Well it’s out there. After a lot of talking we have decided to list the Tavern for sale. We love you all and appreciate your support and kindness over the years. 45 years it’s been a great time!!” In our 2013 feature story about the Cedar Tavern, Stachnik narrated the history of the business and its importance to campers and locals, alike.

“Depending on how you look at things, it was either pure chance or divine intervention,” Chet Janik laughed as he described how he was able to leave Communist Poland as a young boy and immigrate to Cedar, Michigan. “Without the town supporting my great uncle, and without the kindness of the consular official, I never would have grown up here.” Reflecting on his life in the United States and his career as he winds down his time as Leelanau County’s longest serving administrator, Chet narrates the journey with vivid details.

Tucked away in the hilly heart of Leelanau County are two under-the-radar, off-the-beaten path towns that need to be moved up on your list of destinations. Maple City and Cedar are especially great Leelanau hubs if you’re a family with younger children looking for a more relaxed vibe, but still plenty to do.

The 40th annual Cedar Polka Fest returns to the “community that cares” in the heart of Leelanau County, August 25-28. The festival celebrates Cedar’s rich Polish history, lasts four days and nights, and attracts nearly 10,000 people for family fun. Visit the Polka Fest to eat, drink, and dance the nights away.

Cedar River Coffee Company has opened for business in the former Chase Bank building in downtown Cedar and will host a grand opening on Saturday, May 1. The coffee shop is owned by Cedar resident Cindy Gale, a healthcare supervisor at Munson Medical Center. Cindy’s husband Andy runs Bay Area Recycling for Charities.

State, federal and local dignitaries and other supporters of the proposed Cedar River Waterway & Park project are expected to attend Saturday’s noon rededication ceremony of Cedar’s refurbished and repainted red pedestrian/snowmobile bridge.

“Hey, I’ve got an idea.” Any conversation with Cedar area resident Marco Dedenbach will most likely include these buoyant words. For many people, ideas are ephemeral wisps that flicker and die. For the bearded redhead with the ready smile, they’re a call to action. He doesn’t spend much time wondering and worrying about the “ifs” or the “yeah, buts.” For him, it’s all about the how—and most importantly, the who.

Board members of the Cedar Polka Fest decided during their meeting last night to cancel the annual festival, which had been moved from mid-June to September in hopes that the COVID-19 global pandemic would be under control by then. Instead Coronavirus infections are rising in much of the United States and spreading through parts of Leelanau County.

Polka Fest has fresh legs this year. For the first time, Michigan-made vodka and Polish beer will be served in Cedar. Native son Rifino Valentine, who developed the wildly successful, high-quality Valentine Vodka spirits brand in Detroit, will return “home” and toast to his roots. Cedar has an energetic new booster in Kathleen Bittner Koch, a 37-year-old Hamtramck native who moved here five years ago to buy a farm.