Making the most of every season
We believe in making the most of every season in Marquette County. We offer opportunities to explore winter through snowmobiling, skiing, dog sledding, hiking, and so much more! Our miles of extensive trails and amazing winter views offer everyone the chance to experience the beautiful winter unique to the U.P. So what are you waiting for? This is your invitation to find your human nature in Marquette County, don’t let winter slip by without visiting your own winter wonderland in the Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.
Marquette has something for everyone no matter what time of year it is. While we don’t offer traffic jams, huge crowds or constant congestion, we can provide as much peace and quiet as you can ask for.
The winter is an eventful season in Marquette County. Even with the shorter days and longer nights Marquette continues to be a popular destination for vacationers who wish to enjoy the amenities of a big city and small town charm while enjoying awesome winter activities. Marquette County offers lovely shopping districts with enticing dining options and historic down towns. You can also enjoy snowmobiling, cross country skiing, snow biking, and downhill skiing on all of the magnificent trails throughout the County. Contact us at 906.228.7749 and ask for your very own copy of our snowmobile map or cross country skiing map.
There are many exciting events taking place in Marquette County this winter such as the Winter Snow Fun Holiday Parade & Annual Tree Lighting, the New Years ball drop in downtown Marquette, the Noquemanon Ski Marathon, the U.P. 200 Sled Dog Race, the Downtown Showdown and many more. To help plan your next visit to Marquette County check out our calendar for upcoming events.
What's your human nature?Snowy Plains Sled Dog Adventures
Have you ever watched the U. P. 200 Sled Dog Races? Have you ever wondered what it was like race in the Iditarod? You can experience something similar at the Snow Plains Kennel. The Snowy Plains Kennel is located just minutes south of Marquette Michigan near the quaint town of Gwinn. They specialize in sled dog rides using mostly Alaskan huskies bred for running and pulling. The dogs may be hard working by day but are sweet, affectionate and gentle, sure to leave a lasting memory.
Our BlogThe Trenary Outhouse Classic: A U.P. Original
The village of Trenary is located about halfway between Marquette and Gladstone, just east of the junction of U.S. Highway 41 and M-67. It’s a small commercial outpost in the heart of the central U.P. that serves a broad area of rolling farmsteads and old logging camps. Trenary’s most famous export is undoubtedly Trenary Toast, a homegrown bread that’s baked in the old Finnish rusk tradition.
There’s a lot of history in Trenary, and it’s a great place to visit if you want to learn more about the old U.P. These days, it’s better known for an event that encapsulates the work hard, play hard spirit of the “new U.P.” We’re talking about the Trenary Outhouse Classic, a two-decade-old tradition that brings revelers, craftspeople and local celebrities together for a day of creativity, physical activity and merriment – mostly just merriment, actually – on Trenary’s main drag. It’s held on the last Saturday of February, so it can be chilly, but the infectious atmosphere and free-flowing libations keep participants toasty.
Schedule of Events
The 2014 edition of the Trenary Outhouse Classic was a smashing success. Here’s a look at how it went down:
- 12-6 a.m. Locals with earthmoving equipment demolish snowbanks to create a 500 foot long track down the middle of T Road, Trenary’s main drag. To keep the outhouses steady, they smooth out the snow in the middle of the track and shape it into berms on either side. Of course, this doesn’t stop out-of-control outhouses from veering into the crowd!
- 10 a.m. Enthusiastic racers begin showing up at the Trenary Outhouse Races, Inc. headquarters at the corner of M-67 and T Road. Each pair of registrants – it takes two to push an outhouse, after all! – gets two T-shirts, two rolls of autographed toilet paper, two souvenir license plates and two bumper stickers.
- 12 p.m. The festivities begin! Guests can listen to musical entertainment, peruse various trade booths and enjoy plenty of socializing before the race’s official kickoff.
- 1 p.m. Registration closes. If you’re not registered by now, you’re out of luck.
- 2 p.m. Races begin. Once the main event starts, things move pretty quickly. When one racing pair finishes, another quickly moves to the start line to take their place. This year, the event wrapped up by 4 p.m.
Categories and Notable Entrants
To ensure fairness for all participants, the event’s organizers group participants into multiple categories. The “Squirts” group includes racers under the age of 11; they run on a shorter track. 18-35 year olds belong to the “Stinkers” group; “Da Sharts” includes 36-49 year olds; and the “Old Farts” crowd includes everyone aged 50 and older. There’s also a separate group for bars, who sponsor specific teams (racers don’t have to be employees of the bars).
Anyone who’s willing to race an outhouse down an icy track in front of thousands (no joke – last year’s event drew a crowd of 4,000) of screaming, slightly intoxicated fans deserves praise, but some of this year’s entrants really stood out. The winners of the “Most Humorous Outhouse” award, for example, were two scantily dressed guys who pushed a wrecking ball-shaped outhouse. Their entry’s name? You guessed it: “Wrecking Ball.” Others had less-than-appropriate names, most notably “Let Your Bowels Howl” and “Poop on Cancer.”
Why Make the Trip?
If you couldn’t make it to this year’s Outhouse Classic, never fear. There’s sure to be an event next year, and the year after, and the year after that…you get the idea. With sponsorships from local patrons like Trenary Toast and the Trenary Lions Club as well as nationally known brands like Dr. McGuillicuddy’s, the event has tremendous support from far and wide. The event’s public concessions stand, which sells $5 turkey legs the size of a small child, funds the Trenary Volunteer Fire Department. Other local vendors are on hand from year to year, too, including a handful of local food trucks, Jasper’s (a jam and maple syrup maker), a crafty couple that sells all manner of animal pelts and more!
Oh, and we should mention the most “rewarding” part of the Trenary Outhouse Classic: the raffle drawings at the end of the event. This year, the race’s organizers handed out $700, $500 and $300 prizes to three lucky spectators, and one adult racer got his hands on a $150 bonus. We can’t promise that you’ll have the same luck, but it may just be worth the trek out to Trenary to try your hand.
Brian Martucci is a Marquette-based writer with a passion for food, beer, and the great outdoors. Maybe not in that order.