Pedal through the beautiful countryside at your own pace
By Emma Palova
EW Emma’s Writings
Lowell, MI- The 22nd annual Fallasburg Covered Bridge Bike Tour is set for Sunday, July 10th with registration in person at the one-room schoolhouse from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m.
Pre- registration online is at http://www.fallasburg.org or at the Fallasburg Covered Bridge Bike Tour page for $25 per individual, $35 for family before July 6th. After the deadline and in person, there will be an additional $5 charge.
There are several tour options ranging from 12 miles to 100 miles.
The most traveled route is the 28-mile route to Ada and back from the Fallasburg Covered Bridge to the Ada Covered Bridge , according to Fallasburg Historical Society (FHS) president Ken Tamke,“It is a reasonably flat and easy ride for families and casual riders,” said Tamke.
The second most popular route is the South 50, which travels along rivers and streams through beautiful farmland.
Although the main reason to bike any of the routes is fitness, the camaraderie and feeling of accomplishment and adventure of a bicycle tour with friends or family is even better.
“It is exhilarating and exciting to set out on a journey and successfully attain your goal, whether it be 12 miles, 28 miles, 50 miles or 100,” said Tamke.
The Covered Bridge Bike Tour has grown from just a handful of registrants to 253 registrants last year. But, 250 registrants means 300 plus riders as family registrations can cover multiple riders.
“We’ve had modest gains, with more people joining the fun each year,” said Tamke.
The riders can select the distance they wish to ride from 12 miles to 100. They can also combine routes to get some variety. The 12-mile route climbs up Covered Bridge Road, over MacPherson to Sayles, then along the Flat River into Lowell and back to the village via Lincoln Lake.
The 28-mile route travels into Lowell along Lincoln Lake, then west along Grand River to Ada Park. The half-way point and rest stop is at the Ada Covered Bridge. The route follows the same path back to Fallasburg.
The 50-mile route south follows the same route as the 28, but turns south at Buttrick and heads down to 100th, then back east to Alden Nash and back up to Lowell and Lincoln Lake.
The 50-mile north route follows briefly the same path as the 12, but continues on into Ionia with a rest stop at the Blanchard House, then on to Saranac and back to Lowell along Riverside and eventually to the Fallasburg Village.
Last year approximately 20 riders completed the 100. They do the South 50 in the morning and the North 50 in the afternoon.
All proceeds from the bike tour go for the continued preservation of Fallasburg Village. The historical society uses the funds to maintain properties and implement educational programs. Fallasburg Historical Society is an all-volunteer organization so monies collected don’t pay a salary, but pay to fix things and teach people about Fallasburg history.
All routes begin and end in Fallasburg Village. The Misner House is the command center and serves as an outdoor lunchroom.
Dorothy “Dottie” Blain cooks a country-style Italian spaghetti and meatball feast and its vegetarian version with garlic bread and strawberry shortcake for dessert.
“Our riders absolutely rave about our food,” said Tamke. Additionally, all routes offer home-baked goodies, fruit and water or Gatorade at rest stops along the way. Each route has a rest stop.
Late Priscilla Lussmeyer came up with the idea of having a bike ride as a fundraiser for the society 22 years ago. She enlisted the help of one of her many friends who was into biking as a means to raise money for the society. It has grown steadily from there.
Tamke is hoping for 275 registrants and over 300 riders, 75 degrees, sunny and no humidity or wind – a perfect West Michigan day.
“I hope no one gets hurt, everyone has a fantastic time and tell all their friends about it so they can participate in the 23rd annual Fallasburg Covered Bridge Bike Tour,” said Tamke.
Tour options (in miles): 12, 28, 40, 50, 62, 78 or 100.
Registration fee: $25 for individuals / $35 for families.
For more information, call Ken Tamke at 616-682-0785 or e-mail email@example.com
Directions to Fallasburg
From Lowell: North approximately 3 miles to Fallasburg Park Drive.
Right to entrance of park. Angle right on Covered Bridge Road.
Over covered bridge to schoolhouse. Park in field across the street.
There will be county road signs on Lincoln Lake Road and Fallasburg Park Drive, alerting you to Park/Bridge/Historic Village.
Follow FHS and the Fallasburg Covered Bridge Bike Tour on twitter @fallasburg #fallasburg #fallasburgbiketour #fallasburghistory #fallas and other social media.
Copyright (c) 2016. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.
Fallasburg, MI- Nestled under the autumn foliage near the Fallasburg Covered Bridge, pioneer vendors tested the first annual bazaar waters last weekend.
Like the early village pioneers, they braved the wind and the rain. And finally the sun showed up.
But, it wasn’t just the nature’s elements, it was also the novelty of the venue. Most of them like the Hubbert’s Kettle Corn and Natures Serenity had the experience to pull off a show with a regular venue circuit all over west Michigan.
Here at the village just a stroll away from the popular Fall Festival for the Arts they faced the unknown.
“Will people come, will they know where to go,” they questioned. “Where is my spot?”
The idea behind the village bazaar was to piggyback on an already established event, and mainly to bring awareness to the forgotten village.
However, crossing the Covered Bridge into the past was a challenge for most attendees at the fall fest. The fall fest in itself overwhelms with hundreds of booths, 47-year long tradition, a faithful following and a hard-to-get parking spot.
“We hoped to get some of that traffic,” said organizer Michelle Emaus. “We offer variety here.”
True, the vendors ranged from crochet hats and jewelry, welded art, rock art, wood sculptures with wool, clothing, wood carvings, paintings on wood, and repurposed furniture.
Moreover, the setting in the pioneer village amidst the Tower Farm & Barn and the Misner House on the east side evoked an atmosphere from the past.
“This has great potential,” said Steve Hubbert, inventor of Unicorn Poop kettle corn. “I can see booths all the way down to the bridge. Give it five years. Yes, I would come back, it would be a neat thing to be a part of.”
Hubbert gave up the profitable and parallel Alto Fest for the bazaar. But, he has no regrets. He got his money back, like most vendors who stayed through Sunday did.
Linda Kropf Phillips of Natures Serenity suggested food booths and bringing in a car show that would draw people to the bazaar, as well as better signage with an arrow.
“Make it fun for kids, have some games,” said Kropf Phillips, “Some old time music from way back.”
“Of course there are glitches,” said Marcia Alkema with Rock Art. “The Grand Rapids Public schools still has them.”
Alkema wowed to come back next year, if she can still get a good spot.
“I love it out here,” she said. “I’d rather be here than at the festival. It’s a prime location.”
Nancy Price Stroosnyder staffing the Whites Bridge Historical Society Booth said she would definitely come back next year.
“The Fallasburg Historical Society has helped us so much,” she said.
Approximately 20 people came to the village from a distance to explore the museum buildings. However, only the one-room schoolhouse museum was open for tours.
“It takes a team effort to put this together,” said Becky Hubbert. “You have to have the buildings open like you promised.”
The one-room school house enjoyed many visitors, mainly families with kids.
The kids explored the school and some played outside with the pump, others pulled the rope to ring the bell. At the same time, a vintage baseball tournament was taking place on the field. The Fallasburgh Flats played against the Ludington Mariners.
“You have to give it time,” said park manager Doug Wilbur. “This is only the first year.
Here is the vendor map for the upcoming Fallasburg village bazaar this weekend located inside the Fallasburg Park at the 1830s pioneer village.Just cross the Covered Bridge and step back in time. Also included is the village map. The park is three miles north of Lowell, Michigan.
Why not become a member of the Fallasburg Historic Society to help preserve the pioneer village for future generations? Email FHS president Ken Tamke at firstname.lastname@example.org
Here is a list of the vendors:
Fallasburg Village Bazaar set for Sept. 19th & Sept. 20th from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. welcomes the following participants:
Follow us on twitter @fallasburg
Hubbert’s Kettle Corn – Home of the famous Unicorn Poop – Steve & Becky Hubbert
First bazaar celebrates 50th anniversary of Fallasburg village preservation
Fallasburg, MI- The first annual bazaar opens in Fallasburg village on Sept. 19th & Sept. 20th from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. It will feature area vendors and crafters unique and separate from the Fall Festival for the Arts, which also takes place that weekend.
The pioneer village founded by John Fallas in the 1830s is located across the Covered Bridge three miles north of Lowell. It nestles in the Fallasburg Park with the one-room schoolhouse serving as the village museum.
The purpose of the bazaar is to bring awareness to the quaint village that most people don’t know it exists.
“It’s a hidden gem,” said Ken Tamke, president of the Fallasburg Historical Society. “I love that place. It’s a little hamlet that became forgotten.”
Tents with crafts, food and arts will be set up by the Misner and Tower houses. All buildings will be open for self-guided tours without any admission.
“We’re not affiliated with the arts council,” said Tamke. “It will be a concurrent event.”
The mix of artists will include rock and metal artists, clothing, recycled welding artist, upcycled shabby furniture and home accessories and many more.
“Just cross the bridge into the village and step back in time,” said organizer Michelle Emaus. “We will have a nice mix of artists. Our intent is not to duplicate art at the festival, but to piggyback on a successful event.”
The organizers are testing the water to make the village bazaar into an annual event.
“We welcome feedback,” said Emaus. “We’re hoping to make this into an annual event, if the traffic warrants it.”
On Saturday only, the Fallassburg Flats, our 1860’s Vintage Base Ball Club will culminate their season by hosting their annual Fall Finale, The John Wesley Fallass Invitational Vintage Base Ball Tournament in Fallas Field across from the Fallasburg Schoolhouse. Admission is free. Preliminary games begin at 10:00AM with semi-final and final games in the afternoon followed by an awards ceremony around 5:00PM. For more information on the Fallasburg Historical Society, and the Bazaar: www.fallasburg.org