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Any time you can live and work in a clean, safe community- especially along the Lake Michigan shoreline, why wouldn’t you? Manistee has the unique combination of beauty, history and nature, which attracts visitors from all over. Many of those visitors find that Manistee is an ideal place to live, whether you’re raising a family or nearing retirement.
Manistee beckons you outside to discover all its rich natural resources. The Manistee National Forest is a vast area of land perfect for all types of recreation. Here you can hike, fish, camp, canoe, and hunt, no matter what the season. Take a relaxing stroll along the 1.5 mile Riverwalk, a unique feature of downtown Manistee. The path follows the Manistee river and ends up at First Street Beach at Lake Michigan. Sit on one of the many benches and watch small watercraft and large freighters glide by. There are markers every tenth of a mile so you can gauge your distance, and the Riverwalk is handicap accessible. Just north of Manistee is the Michigan Audubon Society Lake Bluff Center, set upon high bluffs that overlook Lake Michigan. Here you can enjoy the wetlands, home to a variety of birds such as hawks and bald eagles. View the giant redwood tree and the colorful lilies, mums, and hydrangeas. Of course, Manistee has wonderful beaches, golf courses, and world class fishing.
Love to shop? Manistee will not disappoint- their downtown shops offer everything from housewares to antiques to hip clothing. Relax with friends over a latte, cocktail, or delicious meal after your shopping excursion and enjoy the Victorian architecture Manistee is known for. The wonderful Vogue Theatre, a historic landmark, is a fabulous place to stop and see a current movie, as well as some good old classics. And the Historic Ramsdell Theater is perhaps Manistee’s most famous landmark. Now over 100 years old, it is the venue today for play productions, ballet performances, weddings, and other special occasions. Actor James Earl Jones began his career at the Ramsdell and periodically comes back for a visit.
The advantages of living in a small community is seeing friends and family at popular festivals throughout the year. Manistee has its share of events including summer’s very popular Forest Festival. Held over the July 4th holiday, it features a parade, fireworks, arts and crafts, music, and so much more. Other festivals include the Manistee County Fair and the September Hops & Props. In December, you won’t want to miss the Victorian Sleighbell Parade & Old Christmas Weekend. Here you can experience what Christmas was like in the 1900’s, complete with carolers in period costumes, Belgian horses, and warm chestnuts.
Manistee takes pride in its exceptional educational system, from preschool up through twelfth grade. You can choose to send your child to Manistee Area Schools, Manistee Catholic Central, or an alternative school. Sports also play a large part in school life, with football, soccer, swimming, track, golf, basketball, baseball, and volleyball being just a few of the athletics offered in Manistee. Whether you become a Chippewa or a Saber, your child will gain confidence through teamwork and good sportsmanship. West Shore Community College, located just 20 minutes south of Manistee, offers students a quality general education for those who wish to later transfer to larger universities.
Manistee offers its residents good medical care. Munson Medical Center serves the community with emergency and rehabilitation services, surgical unit, women and children’s care, and cancer treatment. A variety of physicians are on staff, specializing in obstetrics and gynecology, dermatology, orthopedics, pediatrics, and oncology. Hospice and home health care are also available to the residents of Manistee. More medical options are found at sister hospital- Munson Medical Center in Traverse City, about an hour north.
The township of Arcadia in Manistee County, home of Arcadia Daze every July, is less than 15 minutes north of Onekama.
Manistee National Forest together with the Huron National Forest occupies almost a million acres of land in Michigan’s lower peninsula.
Questions about visiting the Manistee? Looking for more info to help plan your trip?
Manistee has the unique combination of beauty, history and nature, which attracts visitors from all over and inspires many to call it home.
The Manistee River spans for miles and provides the perfect watershed for kayaking, canoeing, fishing, and exploring.
The Manistee Riverwalk follows the Manistee River from Jones Street, under the US-31 bridge, behind downtown, and ends at First Street beach.
The historical Vogue Theatre in Manistee, renovated as a modern-day movie theater, shows current movies, classic films, and family movies.
Known as the “Two Lake Town”, Onekema is just 20 minutes from Manistee and provides a cozy escape from the everyday.
The Ramsdell Regional Center for the Arts is a cultural center in West Michigan and plays an integral part in Manistee’s history.
The North Pierhead Lighthouse, located in the Victorian Port City of Manistee, stands watch over Lake Michigan.