Gina M. Brown
Maps By Gina M. Brown
This place is special to me because I will always remember the first time I drove through these neighborhoods and simply could not believe that such a fairytale setting existed in the real world! Earl Young was a self-taught builder and architect who built both commercial and residential structures. The majority of his creations lie within the two areas shown on this map (each mushroom on the map is the location of another Earl Young house). Pure magic! And special year-round, even in winter.
This place is special to me because I love kitsch! My hometown area of Traverse City is known for many things: wineries, restaurants, outdoor sports, etc. But ever since Mom gave me "The Guinness Book Of World Records" for Christmas when I was eleven years old, I have loved oddities of all kinds (I participated in two events vying for inclusion in the Guinness book: 1) world's largest chicken dance and 2) world's largest ice cream social). And after living in this area for over twenty years, I continue to find new and exciting oddball places to visit.
This place is special to me because two of my great-grandparents came to the United States from Poland (one as a child and one as a young adult). [Correction: Mom says I forgot one, so make that three!] I have always appreciated Polish food and culture. At a prior residence, we lived only two blocks from a Polish hall, where I would occasionally assist the volunteers making pierogi for special events. Fortunately, we settled in an area where Polish culture abounds. If you cannot visit such a place, I highly recommend that you bring the fun to your home, i.e. learn how to play the accordion. It's fun, catchy and hard to put down once you start playing! Trust me.