Lake Huron Facts That Will Blow Your Mind

Of the five Great Lakes, Lake Huron is the second largest by surface area. With nearly 30,000 islands in its waters, Huron is also the fifth largest freshwater lake in the world. Green forest surrounds Lake Huron, which makes it one of the most picturesque places you will ever visit. Likewise, its beautiful scenery and rich natural resources help support the region economically.

Lake Huron receives water from both Lake Michigan and Lake Superior. The water from the lake drains through Lake Erie. The retention time of water in Lake Huron can last up to 22 years, one of the longest in the world. Two countries share its borders – the province of Ontario, Canada rests in the eastern part of the lake and the Michigan on US sits on its western end.

There are many interesting things about Lake Huron.

Here are some amazing facts about Lake Huron that may surprise you.

  •    The last Ice Age and melting of glaciers were the major factors in forming Lake Huron and the other Great Lakes.
  •    In the 1600s, European explorers first discovered Lake Huron from the rest of the Great Lakes. French explorers who found the lake named Huron after the people inhabiting the area. In 1615, Samuel de Champlain and Étienne Brûlé reached Georgian Bay.
  •    There are several huge sinkholes scattered in Lake Huron that contains high amounts of sulfur and low amount of oxygen. These sinkholes can duplicate earth’s ocean conditions about 3 million years ago.
  •    One of the deadliest storms in history to hit the Great Lakes struck Lake Huron the hardest. This devastating natural disaster happened on November 9, 1913. The storm sank ten ships and at least twenty vessels were pushed ashore, it lasted for 16 hours and killed 235 people.
  •    The largest underground salt mine in the world, Goderich Mine, operates underneath Lake Huron. It mines at least 1,640 feet (500 meters) below earth’s surface.
  •    Most significant cities around Lake Huron include Alpena, Bay City, Cheboygan, Goderich, Rogers City, Sarnia, Sauble Beach, Saugeen Shores, St. Ignace, Tobermory, and Port Huron.
  •    More than 1,000 shipwrecks scattered at the bottom of Lake Huron. Even when left to decay, these wrecks still serve as wonders in the lake because of their historical significance. Lake Huron has five underwater preserves in Michiganand Ontario has their own Fathom Five National Marine Park. Tours in the lake include a glass-bottomed boat rid to see 22 underwater shipwrecks.
  •    One of the most admired qualities of Lake Huron is its pristine and remarkably clear water.
  •    The total surface of Lake Huron is about 59,588 square kilometers, with a maximum depth of 229 meters. Averaging of 59 meters deep, and 332 kilometers long, Lake Huron is the second largest of the Great Lakes.
  •    Urban legend has it that a water monster named Mishebeshu or “giant lynx” dwells underwater near the mouth of Serpent River in the northern part of Lake Huron.
  •    Lake Huron houses 30,000 islands including the largest and the most famous freshwater island, Manitoulin Island.
  •    The lake is so big that it can accommodate Georgian Bay. The bay is about 80% of the size of Lake Ontario. Georgian Bay is so massive that it is itself the 20th largest lake in the world and is the sixth largest lake in the US.
  •    Lake Huron does not entirely freeze; it only freezes about once every decade. The last time it froze was in 2014, and about 95% of the lake was covered in ice.
  •    Flowerpot Island, well-known for its “sea stack” or “flowerpot” rock formations is located at Bruce Peninsula. The place is known for its peculiar limestone formations as a result of years of erosion, waves, and rain.
  •    Located at Georgian Bay and measuring 14 kilometers of white sand beach, Wasaga Beach is the world’s largest freshwater beach.
  •    Lake Huron even has a 7,000-year-old petrified forest near Lexington, Michigan.

If you love Lake Huron and the Great Lakes as much as we do, you ought to check out our great collection of Great Lakes Girl clothes and accessories.

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 Lake Erie Origins: From Unpredictable to Concerning

Situated on the borders of Ontario, Canada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, and Michigan, Lake Erie is the fourth-largest of the Great Lakes in North America. It’s also the 13th largest lake in the world and has a surface area of 25,667 square kilometers (9,910 square miles).

Lake Erie was named after the Native Americans who lived along on the southern shore. The Iroquoian tribe called the lake “Erige” which means “cat” because of its unpredictable and violent nature.

From all the Great Lakes, Lake Erie has the smallest and shallowest volume of water in its southernmost part. Because of its volume which measures about 484 cubic kilometers (116 cubic miles) of water, the lake has the shortest average of water retention time of 2.6 years.  Sitting at 173 meters (569 feet) above sea level, Lake Erie is about 92 kilometers at its widest and approximately 388 kilometers long. The depth of Lake Erie reaches 64 meters or 210 feet at its deepest with an average depth of 19 meters or 62 feet.

Source of Water & Fun

The water source of Lake Erie comes from Detroit River and flows out from the lake via the Niagara River. This outflow is used as an important hydroelectric power supply for both Canada and the US.  Water from the lake exits through Welland Canal, this created passages from Port Colborne, Ontario to St. Catherines on Lake Ontario. Passages along Lake Erie provide transportation, food, employment, and some recreational activities to both locals and tourists alike.

A Brief History of Lake Erie

Its beginning can be traced back to the Great Ice Age, where receding glaciers helped form the Lake Erie that we know today. Glacial Grooves found on Kelly’s Island supports this theory. Experts believe the trenches are the largest glacial grooves in the world.

In 1669, a French trader and explorer named Louis Jolliet first recorded Lake Erie. The lake also played an important part in history – particularly in the famous Battle of Lake Erie. During the War of 1812, Oliver Hazard Perry defeated the British Empire near Put-in-Bay. As a reminder of the war and victory, the Perry Monument was built on South Bass Island.  

Environmental Concern in Lake Erie

Lake Erie houses more than 26 islands including Kelly’s Island, Pelee Island, and Bass Island. Most of the islands are located on the western side of the lake. It stretches about 1,402 kilometers (871 miles).  Of all the Great Lakes in North America, Lake Erie is the warmest, which helps to produce abundant fish harvests. The lake fishery industry supports about 10,000 jobs annually and generates income of more than $1 billion, which easily makes it one of the largest fisheries in the world.

However, in the past decades, pollution, over fishing, algae blooms and eutrophication have plagued Lake Erie, raising concern about its environmental health.

For nearly five decades, Lake Erie has become so polluted that some publications have deemed that “Lake Erie is dead”.  The source of the pollution is from heavy industrial companies lined up in major cities along its shores, particularly in Cleveland. Factories deliberately dumped their waste into the lake. The government was not able to provide any regulations and sanctions for a long time.  Additionally, agricultural waste like pesticides made their way into the lake’s water system. As if that wasn’t enough, even city sewers waste gets dumped into Erie, making pollution even worse.

These pollutants have resulted in the increase of phosphorus and nitrogen level in Lake Erie. It also triggers algae blooms in the water suffocating fish which led to massive epidemics of fish death.

Today, residents and local businesses alongside state and national politicians have made a conscious effort for a massive clean-up of Lake Erie. Also, cities bordering the lake are taking initial steps in improving their sewer facilities to help bring the water back to pristine conditions.

If you ever head out to help clean up or spend some leisurentime at Lake Erie, you might want to grab some protection from the sun with a comfortable ballcap.

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Fishing Season: The Best Time to Catch Fish in Lake Michigan

From their borders, the states of Wisconsin, Indiana, Illinois and Michigan all touch Lake Michigan. Major ports in Chicago, Benton Harbor, Gary, and Green Bay surround its shores. This makes traveling and fishing in the lakes accessible to almost everyone.

The question now lies, when is the best time to go fishing?

Depending on what you want to catch, each month and season offers different varieties of fish in Lake Michigan. Usually, fishing season in Lake Michigan opens in mid-April, May, and June. During this time, it is best to catch Coho Salmon with a very good chance reeling in Rainbow Trout and Brown Trout.

The months of April and May are the peak season to catch Jumbo Yellow Perch. While from the month June until October Coho salmon and Chinook salmon dominate the waters. The best time to catch the biggest trout starts from September to October, which is spawning season. Trout caught in these months can weigh over 30 lbs.

In Lake Michigan, salmon is the most prized catch of the day.

Since its introduction into the Great Lakes in the 1960s, salmon fishing has been part of many fishing tournaments in Michigan. Most anglers hunt several species of salmon in Lake Michigan, including Atlantic salmon, Coho salmon, Chinook salmon (better known as King salmon).

Anyone can catch salmon in Lake Michigan with its year round fishing season.  However, fishing at a particular time during the year can increase your chances of reeling in the “Big One.” Before sailing, keep in mind that the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Regulations has imposed several fishing regulations. Some of these include size, catch limits, seasons, and fees.

Atlantic Salmon

From the beginning of spring until summer anglers chase Atlantic salmon in Lake Michigan. Their spawning period starts in midsummer and anglers can reel in their biggest catch in Great Lakes tributaries. Once a native to Lake Ontario, Atlantic salmon once disappeared in the Great Lakes at the start of the 20th century. The MDNR began introducing the fish into the Great Lakes and its connected water ways in the 1970s. Today, the endeavor has shown to be wildly successful and has since provided anglers with some of the best catches in the country.

Coho Salmon

Fishing season for Coho salmon peaks in late summer and early fall. But anyone can catch Coho salmon any time of the year in Lake Michigan. According to MDNR studies, migrating fish like the Coho salmon may be caught in certain rivers surrounding Lake Michigan, including St. Joseph River. Meanwhile, fishers can catch Coho salmon in winter months by casting in Munising Bay in Lake Superior.

Coho salmon are classified as a Pacific salmon species. It was one of the very first salmon introduced to the Great Lakes in the early 1960s. The fish then began spawning in 1967, which has made a huge impact on Michigan fishing.

King Salmon    

Many anglers choose to reel in King salmon while fishing the Great Lakes. In Lake Michigan, fishing season for King salmon begins in late spring and lasts through the summer. The spawning season for this fish begins in August and ends in September. Areas of Ludington, Manistee, and Muskegon produce hundreds of these fish each year. However, as the month of August ends, this breed starts to move upstream and many anglers wait to catch them in the faster streams and rivers. Grand River is one of the more popular fishing spots for King salmon.

As the King Salmon begins it migration from the river mouth, anglers can reel in some massive catches. King salmon, as the name implies, can reach as big as 20 lb to 30 lb. The biggest catch recorded in Michigan is about 46 lbs. and was caught in Grand River.

Different Salmon Species

Because of the vastness of Lake Michigan, other species of salmon like pink salmon, chum salmon, and kokanee salmon can live harmoniously with other species of fish. And like other fish species of the lake, they have their own peak season. The best time to catch these kinds starts in spring, late summer and early fall.  Spawning time also varies even with the same species and Michigan is a large state to cover. In the northern part of the state, spawning starts in May. While in the southern part of the state it may begin sometime in October.

If you’re going to head to Lake Michigan for some fishing of your own, you might want to grab a comfortable Michigan hat to help protect you from the elements.

Information about Lake Michigan

 

Lake Michigan is one of the five Great Lakes located in North America. Of all the five lakes, Lake Michigan is the only lake that sits entirely within the US borders. The other four lakes, Lake Huron, Lake Erie, Lake Superior and Lake Ontario are shared by Canada and the US. The word “Michigan” came from the Ojibwa word ‘mishigami’ which means “great water.”

Because of its surface area and volume, Lake Michigan is the second-largest of the Great Lakes with the only one bigger being Lake Superior.

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Finding Agate in Lake Superior

Looking for something a little out of the ordinary to do while visiting Michigan? You could give agate hunting a try. If you’re not quite sure what that is, continue reading to learn more:

What is agate?

Agate is a type of cryptocrystalline silica with characteristics of grains and bright colors. This type of rock develops as secondary deposits in vesicles or hollow cavities of rocks. Even though agate can develop in all types of rocks, they are commonly associated with volcanic and metamorphic rocks. Many agates that exist today came from prehistoric volcanic lava formations.

How to spot agate rocks?

One of the best signs to look for when hunting for agate is their waxy almost polished surface. Most agates are opaque while some are translucent that come in different colors. Iron oxide, a prominent mineral present in agate produces the rust-red and yellow shades in the formations.

However, not all agate have visible bands around them.  Sometimes they bear less of their usual patterns, particularly if there’s no crack or break to see inside. Often, the bands may have been peeled away or broken apart. Since agates fill up holes in lava, look for rounded rocks or dimples on the outer surface. Because of these unique features, agate stands out from other rocks but are easy to miss if you don’t know what you’re looking for. 

How to hunt for Agate in Lake Superior

Lake Superior is one of the best places to look for agate rocks. About a billion years ago, volcanic eruptions created distributed these rock formations across the northeastern part of Minnesota and in the northwestern area of Wisconsin. The melting of the Great Ice Age which took place about 10,000 to 15,000 years ago help disperse them through the greater area, including all around Lake Superior.

Hunting agate in beach shores is a fun and fulfilling activity for kids and adults alike. But how do you spot a genuine agate from an ordinary rock? Here are some tips for amateur hunters:

  •    Morning and late afternoon are the best time to look for agate on beach shores. The sun’s rays can help you distinguish their particular rock pattern. Doing so in the middle of the day may not be very helpful as you need to concentrate finding agate with the sun at your back.
  •    Try digging down through layers of sand and rock piles instead of walking for miles along the beach shores. This will help you focus on the same spot, not missing or leaving behind unturned spaces. It’s a good strategy too if there are a lot of people trying to find agate the same time as you do.
  •    Sometimes agate may conceal its true form in a rough brownish and uneven husk. So, don’t just disregard rocks because it doesn’t look like what you see in stores. Try to examine it closer, it might be the precious stone you are looking for.
  •    The chances of finding agate after a big storm and high waves are higher. Start your search first thing in the morning and be the first person on the beach or as early as the weather allows it.
  •    It’s easier to find agate just along the beach shores or just under waves because the water clears out impurities and sand. However, more experienced hunters try to look for sparkle or glint reflection from an agate layer in dry rocks.
  •    Since agate is formed in holes or vesicles in larger rocks, try to look for elongated or uneven shaped ball. An agate usually lies flat and angular in nature but doesn’t have any corners.
  •    Another trick it is to just look for pretty looking rocks since you might not be sure what kind it will be. There is a huge number of collectible rocks littered across the beach, so the more you collect increases your chances of getting an agate.

Most important of all is that it’s best to not overthink things. Patience, luck and good timing are all you really need for successful agate hunting.

Want to show off some bright colors of your own? Check out this Michigan D T-hoodie.

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Catastrophe in Lake Erie

The Iroquoian tribe who inhabited the shores of the lake called it “Erige” which means “cat” because of its unpredictable and violent nature. And true to its name, Lake Erie has vicious and unforgiving storms. It has claimed hundreds of vessels and thousands of people lost their lives while crossing Lake Erie’s treacherous water. Here are some of the most notorious shipwrecks in Lake Erie:

C.B. Lockwood

How can a ship sink twice? Impossible it may seem but that exactly what happened to CB Lockwood? The 285-foot wooden steamer was sailing from Duluth, Minnesota to Buffalo New York when it sank.  The vessel encountered a vicious storm on October 13, 1902, and sank east of Cleveland, Ohio just 13 miles out of Fairpoint Harbor.  After several days, it was found and marked with buoys, and then a peculiar thing happened. The Lockwood disappeared again.

Researchers had a hard time finding the exact location of the wreck and baffled them for decades. After several years, it was discovered that the ship sank again into a glacier-formed valley beneath the waters of Lake Erie.

Light Vessel 82    

The $50,000 steel lightship was built in Muskegon, Michigan used a lighthouse service in summer of 1912.  During this early time, LV 82 served as a temporary lightship vessel in the Buffalo Harbor, one of the busiest ports in the world at that time.

Most of the sea vessel in Buffalo followed a storm warning of the newly enforced Weather Bureau. LV 82 was last seen anchored near the shores of Buffalo Harbor and Point Abino before it went missing. At the peak of the storm, the LV 82 was lost at sea with Captain Hugh Williams and his five crews. LV 82, was the first and last lightship lost on Lake Erie.

The following year, LV 82 was found after the ice broke up and the water started to flow towards Niagara River. Another vessel named Surveyor discovered the shipwreck 62 feet underwater just two miles from their station. Local authorities organized retrieval operations to refloat and towed the wreckage to Detroit.  It was then rebuilt and functioned as a relief light-ship but later replaced by Point Abino Lighthouse in Canada in 1918.

Atlantic

Measuring 267 feet, a beam expanding 33 feet, a depth of 12.5 feet and weighing about 1,115 tons, Atlantic was one of the biggest vessels at the time. The steamboat was used as service for people going between Buffalo, New York and Detroit, Michigan.  Atlantic had 85 staterooms, could fit 300 passengers, and had  top speed of 16 and a half hours in each trip.

E.B Ward of Detroit and S. Ward of St. Clair, Michigan owned the Atlantic and operated by Michigan Central Railroad.

On August 20, 1852, it collided with another steamer named Ogdensburg. The disaster claimed more than 150 lives, possibly as many as 300 lives and ranks as the fifth worst tragedy in the history of the Great Lakes.

SS G. P. Griffith

On June 17, 1850, the passenger steamer, SS G. P. Griffith burned and sank on Lake Erie. The disaster claimed 241 to 289 lives and remains as the third greatest loss of life on the Great Lakes. Of its 326 passengers, many were immigrants from Ireland, England, Germany, and Scandinavia. It made its last stops at Erie, Pennsylvania and Fairport, Ohio before heading out to Cleveland.

The ship’s wheelman named Richard Mann reported sparks shooting in the ship’s smokestacks around 4 am on June 17.  Captain C.C. Roby ordered the ship’s course towards the shore, the course helped fanned the flamed, pushing passengers forward. After some time, the crew abandoned their posts but the momentum carried the ship towards a sandbar. The flames immediately burned down the ship burning everyone left aboard.

Lake Erie Size and Information

Lake Erie is the fourth largest lake of the Great Lakes in North America. It measures at about 92 by 388 kilometers and its borders are shared by Canada and the US. The province of Ontario and the states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York and Michigan are some of the major areas enjoying the economic and biological benefits of Lake Erie.

The lake is the shallowest and the smallest of all the Great Lakes with 484 cubic kilometers of water in its southernmost tip. Because of this, Lake Erie has the shortest water retention time of 2.6 years. The lake sits 173 meters (569 feet) above sea level and has a depth of 64 meters. It ranks as the 13th largest lake in the world in terms of its surface area of 25,667 square kilometers.

With rich history and so many things to do in the region, it makes sense that you’d be interested in the Great Lakes. Show of your love of these amazing bodies of water with a Great Lakes Girl bag.

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Towns Bordering Lake Superior and What They Have to Offer

In North America, ancient civilizations founded their community around the Great Lakes. These bodies of water help cultivate the culture and tradition of the nation we come to know today. As the largest of the Great Lakes, the shores of Lake Superior are home to important cities in both Canada and the United States. This beautiful body of water is also one of the many reasons why states like Wisconsin, Minnesota and Michigan are awesome places to visit.

Duluth

With an estimated population of 86,110, Duluth acts as a major port city in Minnesota and the main town of Saint Louis County. Located in the north and at the westernmost part of the Great Lakes, Duluth is the second largest city located on the shores of Lake Superior. Sea vessels can access the town from the Atlantic Ocean via the Saint Lawrence Seaway and the Great Lakes Waterway.

Duluth established a metropolitan area within the lake with nearby towns of Superior and Wisconsin, referred to as the Twin Ports. It formed the largest port in the Great Lakes for transporting grains, iron ore, and coal for decades since its foundation.

Some of the best family tourist attractions in Duluth include:

  •    North Shore Scenic Drive
  •    Canal Park
  •    Aerial Lift Bridge
  •    Historic Glensheen Congdon Estate
  •    Great Lakes Aquarium
  •    Lake Superior Maritime Visitors Center
  •    Enger Tower
  •    Lake Superior Railroad Museum
  •    Spirit Mountain Adventure Park
  •    Split Rock Lighthouse

Superior

Superior is the largest city found in Wisconsin’s Douglas County with a population of 27,244 according to the 2010 census.

It is located at the western end of Lake Superior in northwestern Wisconsin and is adjacent to the Village of Superior and the Town of Superior. Two well-known rivers surround Superior, Nemadji and Saint Louis, which help flourish its trading community. Superior also served as the last dock for the Edmund Fitzgerald before sinking in 1975.

Some of the best family tourist attractions in Superior include:

  •    Pattison State Park
  •    Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center
  •    Fairlawn Mansion & Museum
  •    Wisconsin Point Lighthouse
  •    SS Meteor Maritime Museum
  •    Ice Caves
  •    Old Firehouse and Police Museum

Marquette

Marquette is a city in Marquette County in Michigan with an estimated 21,355 residents according to the 2010 census. The most populous city of the Upper Peninsula also acts as a key port on Lake Superior. The Northern Michigan University calls Marquette their home and iron ore is its main shipping industry.  With the quality of living in the town, CBS MoneyWatch named Marquette among the best places in the US to retire.

Initially, the town was called New Worcester but later changed to Marquette on August 21, 1850. This is to honor the French Jesuit, Jacques Marquette who first discovered the place.

Some of the best family tourist attractions in Marquette include:

  •    Presque Isle Park
  •    Sugarloaf Mountain
  •    Lakenenland Sculpture Park
  •    Marquette Mountain
  •    Marquette Maritime Museum
  •    Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum
  •    Dead River Falls
  •    Marquette Regional History Center
  •    Iron Ore Heritage Trail

Thunder Bay

Thunder Bay rests in Ontario Canada and, according to the 2011 Canadian census, it has a total of 108,359 residents and is the second-most inhabited city in Northern Ontario. Its municipalities include Oliver, Paipoonge, and Neebing. It also has the townships of Shuniah, Conmee, Gillies, Fort William First Nation, and O’Connor.

In the late 17th century, Europeans made their way to Thunder Bay and it became a French fur trading outpost on the shores of the Kaministiquia River. It then became a popular trading spot for other important goods like grains.  Traders usually traveled from western Canada to the east coast through the Great Lakes and the Saint Lawrence Seaway, making Thunder Bay a notably important location.

Some of the best family tourist attractions in Thunder Bay include:

  •    Terry Fox Monument
  •    Fort William Historical Park
  •    Sleeping Giant Provincial Park
  •    Thunder Oak Cheese Farm
  •    The Blue Point Amethyst Mine
  •    Centennial Botanical Garden
  •    Mission Island Marsh
  •    Thunder Bay Museum
  •    Chippewa Park
  •    International Friendship Garden

Sault Ste. Marie

Sault Ste. Marie pronounced as “Soo Saint Marie” lies on St. Marys River in Ontario, Canada. Located near the Canada-US border, it is the third largest city in Northern Ontario. In its southern area, the US city of Sault Ste. Marie is located in Michigan State. Residents of the place are referred to as Saultites. The International Bridge connects the two countries with Interstate 75 in Michigan and Huron Street on Ontario side.

Early French settlers called the river Les Saults de Ste. Marie in which the town got its name. For at least a hundred years, the descent from St. Mary’s River to Lake Superior slowed shipping traffic requiring overland portage of cargo from one lake to the other.

Some of the best family tourist attractions in Sault Ste. Marie include:

  •    Canadian Bushplane Heritage Center
  •    Sault Ste. Marie Boardwalk
  •    Sault Ste. Marie National Historic Site
  •    Mill Market
  •    Roberta Bondar Park
  •    Gros Cap Conservation Area

Love the Great Lakes? Check out this cute Great Lakes Girl sweatshirt.

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Rockford Ninja Warrior

Are you an aspiring Ninja Warrior? Or do you just love to watch others compete? Or do you live for the #fails?

Whatever your motivation for loving Ninja Warrior is, we want to let you know about the Rockford Ninja Warrior going down This Friday August 11 2017. The amateur competition starts Friday. While the Pro division starts on Saturday.

Rockford Ninja Warrior 2017

Check out the intro video from their Channel:

Ninja Insider

“Ok so this great info so far. But I want insider access”.  Oh well we did too! That’s why we went down early (cuz we love supporting awesome events like this) and got you some behind the scenes shots to get you pumped for this amazing family friendly event.

group shot ninja warrior rockford 2017

Michigan D t shirt Rockford ninja warrior

2017 Rockford Ninja Warrior

So make sure you go get your tickets and dont miss out on this exciting action!

Love the Michigan D T Shirt featured in the shots? Rep the Mitten state with pride. Show of your pride by shopping our Michigan Apparel- We hope to see you out here!

Not headed to Rockford?  Come check out our Traverse City Store!
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