Summer Ends and Fall Activities Begin
In winter I get up at night
And dress by yellow candle-light.
In summer quite the other way
I have to go to bed by day.
~Robert Louis Stevenson
Last weekend my sister and I visited Holly, Michigan, a quaint little town up North. We didn’t plan to spend the day, but there were too many things to do and see. There’s this great little restaurant, the Bittersweet Cafe, we stopped off to start our Saturday. The food is excellent! And there’s nothing like a mimosa with your breakfast burritos before exploring the city.
There was a parade for “Holly Days” we had to bypass to get to the restaurant which was about a quarter of a mile away from the cafe. Needless to say, we were hungry when we arrived. Holly is filled with history. If you are an antique buff, be prepared to be dazzled by all of the antique shops filled with collectibles from the 1930’s forward. This is the place to visit to find treasures.
I ran across an original Boris Chezar sand and oil painting in its original frame tucked away upstairs in a local antique shop. A little research revealed it was worth a pretty penny! There are treasures to be found for sure.
There were vinyl records of bands I grew up with like the Beatles, Elvis Presley and jazz bands from the 1920’s!
In the late summer of 1908, Pro-Temperance movement advocate Carry Amelia Nation came to Battle Alley and the Holly Hotel, breaking glasses of spirits and beers and clubbing patrons of the hotel with her umbrella. Ms. Nation came to Holly after accepting the invitation of Holly resident Winifred Mott, president of the local Woman’s Christian Temperance Union.
After being thrown out of the Holly Hotel, she continued to make her way to other saloons and pubs down Battle Alley. The following morning, she gave a sermon to a crowd of about 200 people. She caused quite the ruckus and destruction while in Holly, causing her to be arrested and held in the local jail for a short time.
At the time, Oakland County was lawfully a “dry” county, but the officials of Holly refused to uphold the law, being home to more than 18 saloons and bars. For some time, it had only been here-say as whether she had been to Holly or not.
After much research, the village began to celebrate her visit annually on Labor Day weekend for nearly 40 years at the Carry Nation Festival. Sadly, the festival no longer runs due to inadequate funding.”
One of the locals was retelling the story of Carry Amelia Nation and Battle Alley. Holly also celebrates several festivals, the Dickens Festival and the Renaissance Festival.
The Holly Dickens Festival is the oldest and longest running Dickens Festival in the United States. It is now in its 41st year! The festival takes place in Historic downtown Holly and spans three weekends between Thanksgiving and Christmas.
It kicks off with an evening, lighted parade. Following is the arrival of Santa Claus for the traditional tree lighting ceremony. Throughout the festival, many forms of entertainment can be found, including: horse-drawn carriage rides, caroling, street sweeping contests, newspaper peddlers, vintage photos, and more.
Of course, being the Dickens Festival, one of the recurring activities that can be seen on Main Street is an abridged version of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol”. You can also find many characters walking around in character all during the festival.”
In the marketplace customers can find many food options, including Scotch eggs, fresh-baked goods, and the famous turkey legs that are cooked over an open flame. There are also artisans of glassware, leather, jewelry, and clothing who often share skills in craft demonstrations.
So if you are planning any trips for your end of summer or around the holidays this year, why not take some time and visit this quaint little town and see if you can find any treasures to add to your collection.
Stay tuned for my next recipe, Pineapple Fried Rice with Broccolini and Peanut Sauce. 😛