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Travel Michigan: Michigan Fall Color Report.

Upper Peninsula color remains remarkable; Lower Peninsula on its way

LANSING, Mich., Oct. 10 /PRNewswire/ --

The Upper Peninsula (U.P.) is in fine form this week, as peak color development is reported in the majority of cities. Color changes are still varied throughout the Lower Peninsula, ranging from 20 percent in some areas of the mitten to 80 percent in other regions.

UPPER PENINSULA: The U.P. is the place to be this weekend, as a prime palette is reported in Calumet, Copper Harbor, Manistique, Ontonagon and St. Ignace. Paradise, Crystal Falls, Newberry and Sault Ste. Marie have caught up with the more western areas since last week, reporting up to 80 percent development of golds, oranges and reds on the maples, oaks and aspens.

NORTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA: There has been rapid color progression in some areas of northern Lower Michigan this past week, as Gaylord, Cadillac, Frankfort and Traverse City report colors nearly at their best this week -- some areas are boasting up to a 90 percent change.

NORTHEAST LOWER PENINSULA: On the northern sunrise side, Mackinaw City, Harrisville, Roscommon and Rose City are showing off no less than 70 percent development, with auburn, orange and pink dominating the landscape. The colors are a tad slower in Alpena, East Tawas, Grayling, Harrison and Onaway, but are still well on their way with 40 to 70 percent development ditching their green and donning crimson and golden tones at this time.

WESTERN LOWER PENINSULA: Muskegon is ahead of its game this week, with 80 percent change reported at Muskegon State Park. In Grand Rapids and Ludington, however, change is reported at between 20 and 25 percent, so leaf-lovers have plenty of time to enjoy those autumn advancements as they occur. In southwest Lower Michigan, Holland is right on Muskegon's tail, also reporting an 80 percent transformation from green to amber and auburn at Holland State Park. Hastings' and Kalamazoo's prime viewing times are predicted to be mid-month; St. Joseph's Warren Dunes State Park is close in the running with those two towns as well.

EASTERN LOWER PENINSULA: Mark mid-October on your calendar to enjoy the shades of crimson and gold in the Thumb area and southeast Michigan -- but fall foliage fanatics don't necessarily have to wait to experience early color changes in these areas. Bay City, Caseville and Port Austin are reporting significant changes; however, peak colors are not expected until at least next week. The same holds true for Port Huron, Holly, Jackson, Tipton and Milford, though many of these areas have already reached their 50 percent marks.

For a recorded message about Michigan fall-color conditions, travelers may call 888-78-GREAT (784-7328), 24 hours a day, or visit www.michigan.org for online condition updates. Information is updated weekly by AAA Michigan during the fall-color season.

Travelers seeking additional Michigan travel information may also visit www.michigan.org to search the comprehensive database of fall festivals and events, find fall-color tour routes, and learn about cider mills and U-Pick orchards. They may also call 888-78-GREAT to speak to a travel advisor, Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. (EDT), and Saturday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Travel Michigan is a division of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

Autumn Festival Highlights

October 10-17, 2001

October 13

CADILLAC

Chestnut Harvest Festival

Celebrate the area's chestnut heritage with roasted chestnuts, chestnut seedling distributions and a variety of harvest activities.

231-775-0657, www.cadillacmichigan.com

October 13

FRANKFORT

Fall Festival

Enjoy hot cider, donuts, fall color kayak trips, bike rentals, balloon rides and hay rides among other fall-themed activities at Frankfort's Fall Festival.

231-352-7251

October 11-14

ALPENA

Great Lakes Lighthouse Festival

Get up-close and personal with Michigan's landmark lighthouses through tours, displays, entertainment and educational programs.

800-4-ALPENA, www.alpenacvb.com

October 13-14

PORT HURON

Happy Apple Days

Sit back and relax on a carriage ride, munch on free apples and let the kids partake in a variety of children's activities.

800-852-4242

October 12-14

CHARLEVOIX

22nd Annual Apple Festival

Visit downtown Charlevoix this weekend and enjoy free carriage rides, a petting farm, entertainment and peruse and purchase all kinds of apple products.

231-547-2101, www.charlevoix.org

MICHIGAN FALL COLOR

GETAWAY PACKAGES

Fall color season is peaking in northern Michigan, and getaway packages provide the perfect way to experience the state's most colorful season while getting great deals at the same time! Following are just two examples of many unique ways to view Michigan's brilliant autumn hues.

A Fall Getaway to Boyne Falls

Colors are almost at their peak in northern Michigan, and the Four Seasons Motor Lodge in Boyne Falls wants to make enjoying them easier for you. Package includes:

-- Two nights' lodging at the Four Seasons Motor Lodge

-- Continental Breakfast

-- A fall-color driving guide

Package price is $62 per room, plus tax. Contact: 231-549-2710.

Fall Colors Package, Holland

Holland's colors are ahead of the game this week, so visit the Country Inn for an autumn escape. Package includes:

-- One night's lodging at the Country Inn of Holland

-- An "Adventure Welcome Bag" containing a Fantastic Four trip ticket to explore four area parks, assorted snacks for your journey, a disposable camera and a photo album

-- Deluxe continental breakfast

Package starts at $89. Contact: 616-396-6677, www.holland.org.

Manistee Adventure Jeep Tour, Mears

Get out and explore the ever-changing wilderness, and see the fall foliage from a unique point of view. Package includes:

-- Two days of two-tracking through the Manistee National Forest

-- One night's lodging at the Econo Lodge

-- Five meals

Package starts at $250, minimum of two people per jeep, two children under 10 can ride free. Contact: 231-873-5048, www.sandykorners.com.

For more great getaway packages, call 888-78-GREAT or visit www.michigan.org .

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