Sunday, February 4, 2018

2018 Paradise Vintage Snowmobile Show

The 2018 Paradise Vintage Snowmobile Show held Saturday, January 27 had comfortable weather conditions, although it appeared that the 2018 January thaw would impact the show's participation; it was clear vintage snow mobiles have different trail condition mandates then today's newer models.  This year's event was held in conjunction with the Winter Carnival organized by the Paradise Area Chamber of Commerce.

This year, the show organizers added several new features:  a 50/50 drawing, Best of Show winner, and a show ride.  The 50/50 drawing was held at the community center (the location of the show).  The pot would be split evenly between the winning drawn ticket and the Best of Show sled owner selected by a team of judges. The show ride was led by the Paradise Vintage Jamboree Club to the Paradise Area Night Rider’s barn.
Best of Show, Kevin Campbell, (left) Vicksburg, splits 50/50 with Brian Wachter, (to his immediate right) Paradise

The judges selected a 1975 Mercury sled owned by Kevin Campbell of Vicksburg, Michigan.

1975 Mercury, Best of Show owned by Kevin Campbell, Vicksburg, MI
 Troy Miley of Oakland City, Indiana traveled the furthest to the show to display and ride his 1982 Ski-Doo.

1975 Mercury Sled owned by Troy Miley, Oakland City, Ind, came the greatest distance, 689 Miles

The Oldest Sled in this show was a 1971 Sno Jet driven by Noah Jordan of Coloma Michigan.

Oldest Sled, 1971 Sno Jet Driven by Hoah Jordan of Coloma MI
The club with the greatest number of participants was the Paradise Vintage Jamboree Club.  Club President, Ross Heavener, Paradise driving a 1982 Kawaski to the show.

Paradise Vintage Jamboree Club
Shown in the image below, Best of Show winner, Kevin Campbell with his 1975 Mercury Sled was delighted to learn of his pending prize and encouraged everyone to buy more tickets.

Best of Show Splits 50/50 Pot with Winning Ticket Holder
The winning ticket was drawn by Paradise resident, Don Bitnar; the ticket was purchased by Brian Wachter who entered a 1974 Evnrude in the show.

A special treat this year was an entry by William Zeeman, Eckerman, a 1973 800 Hirth Engine Ice Sled.  This entry created a lot of stops to the show and conversation as to the unique character of this rig. 

1973 800  Hirth Engine Ice Sled
Prizes for this year's Vintage Snowmobile Show were provided by the Paradise Area Night Riders, Silver Creek Grill & Pub, Paradise Foods, and Gene's Tahquamenon General Store.  The only cash prize offered was the 50/50 drawing share of the pot.  There were no registration fees to participate in the show.  Plans for the 2019 show are scheduled for the last Saturday in January, the 26th, 2019.  Make plans today to bring your machine to Paradise!

2018 Snow Bake-Off Baking Contest Results

1st Place Yeast Breads Cinnamon Rolls

The third annual Snow Bake-Off Baking Contest and Bake Sale held Saturday, January 27 at the Whitefish Township Community Center in Paradise Michigan was a feature of the Paradise Winter Carnival.  Contest Director, Dianne Clark, stated that attendance was down this year, but the quality of the entries remained high. The Paradise Area Chamber of Commerce coordinates a series of events the last weekend in January to thwart cabin fever.  Aside from the baking contest, events include a guided snow show hike sponsored by North Country Trail, Hiawatha-Shore-to-Shore Chapter, a pancake & sausage breakfast, winter swap meet, Vintage Snowmobile Show, Snow Sculpture Contest, and Snowshoe Race sponsored by the Tahquamenon Country Pathways Association.

Judge Chef Noah Hogue Sponsored by Camp 33

Baking contestants were asked to bring their entry to the community center between 8 – 10 AM on Saturday.  The 2018 judge was Chef Noah Hogue sponsored by Tahquamenon Falls Brewery & Pub at Camp 33, located at the Tahquamenon Upper Falls.  Judging proceeded at 10:30 AM; a number of community members observed the judging process as they enjoyed the Pancake & Sausage breakfast hosted by the Whitefish Township Emergency Medical Services team.  At noon the bake sale opened; sales from the bake sale cover the costs for prizes and ribbons.

Randy Weighman, Paradise, Adult Yeast Breads

In the Yeast Bread Adult Division, Randy Weighman, Paradise, took first place with his Cinnamon Rolls, and Penny Clark, Eckerman, took 2nd place with Sticky Buns.

Sarah Wilde, Paradise, 1st, Adult Cookie
Isaac Holden, Paradise, Youth Quick Bread
Sarah Wilde, Paradise, defended her Adult Cookie Division title with Lemon Spritz Cookies.  Cheryl Humphrey, Eckerman, took first place in the Adult Quick Bread Division with her Lemon Bread. 
In the Youth Division, Quick Breads, Isaac Holden, Paradise, took 1st Place with his Cinni-Minis while his brother, Caleb Holden also of Paradise, took 2nd place with his Banana Oatmeal Bread. Baking Contest Director, Clark, remarked that the Banana Oatmeal Bread was the first item sold in the bake sale. 

Caleb Holden, Paradise, Youth Quick Bread

For the 2019 baking contest, contest volunteers are considering alternative divisions such as cakes and cupcakes.  All members in the area communities are encouraged to practice their baking skills this winter and then submit their entry in 2019.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

2017 Decorate the Township Contest

Winter Decorations displayed next to The INN, Smokehouse and Gastropub in Paradise, Michigan
What an incredible season so far in Paradise as the Paradise Area Chamber of Commerce announces their 2017 Decorate the Township Contest winners.  The chamber proceeded with the contest in 2017 as a celebration of the new winter decorations installed in Paradise.  The decorations have an emphasis on snowflakes and include LED displays and banners purchased from Bronner’s Commercial Display Division with the financial support of Village Fabrics & Crafts, the Paradise Area Tourism Council, Whitefish Township, the Falls Building Center, Cloverland Electric, Helen Newberry Joy Hospital, Hiawatha Telephone Company, Paradise Area Night Riders, Paradise Area Chamber of Commerce, the Paradise Area Community Foundation, Camp 33, the Wild Blueberry Festival, the Lodge at Silver Creek, and a number of private donations.

The Falls Building Center
The Falls Building Center
Curley's Motel
Berry Patch
Paradise Inn
Paradise Foods

A number of chamber members were in the spirit of decorating this season, many of which provided great visual displays during the daytime hours.  It is truly,  the efforts of the residents in Whitefish Township that highlight the spirit of the season!  

307 North M-123 Eckerman, Michigan 2017 Decorate the Township Contest Private Property Winner

The 2017 panel of judges declared John and Phyllis Halderman at 307 North M-123 as the 2017 Decorate the Township individual prize recipient.  Mrs. Halderman was apologetic as they haven’t decorated as much this year as they have in the past, but their efforts have not gone unnoticed.  To this day, m
any residents express delight in the decorations often displayed at the Halderman’s. 
Chainsaw Chad’s, 8148 North M-123 in Paradise, Michigan
Paradise wood-smith, Chad DeRuischer located at 8148 North M-123 is the Decorate the Township Commercial winner.  Most summer days, you’ll find Chainsaw Chad designing, sculpting and building unique works of art in this complex. A little snow in the winter though doesn’t prevent his team from making a big statement to celebrate and decorate for the season.   Learn more about Chainsaw Chad in Paradise through Facebook and check out the images of his incredible sculptures and furniture.

Congratulations to our 2017 Decorate the Township Contest winners.  Each will receive a $100 on behalf of the Chamber’s appreciation for their inspiration in decorating the township.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Chili Cook Off Showcases Local Talents

The Paradise Area Chamber of Commerce invited restaurant members and residents alike to participate in their second Chili Cook-Off.  One of the many activities of the 2017 Ice Festival held the last weekend in February.

The Chili Cook-Off provides Whitefish Township residents an opportunity to showcase the talents of many area cooks and ample opportunity for residents to ward off cabin fever.

At noon, chili tasters were encouraged to sample each of the  entries which included two "White
Chili" entries and one pulled pork variety.  All entries were anonymously identified including entries sponsored by area restaurants.  Tasters were provided a selection of soda crackers or corn chips to cleanse the palate and each sampling was served in a fresh cup to avoid a co-mingling of seasonings.

Scoville Scale Presented by Local Herbologist

True to form the Chili Cook-Off conventionally offers attendees information.  In its first year, basic chili concepts including chili pepper specifics was presented by local herbologist, Dianne Clark.  This year Dianne advanced the chili concepts to include scoville units, the scoville scale specifying chili pepper heat measurements,  and a Spanish Label Reading Contest.  The Spanish Label Reading Contest winner was Brendan Mather, Brimley, Michigan.

Many tasters found it frustrating to limit their selection to only "ONE" best chili.  Tasters commented frequently as to the quality of each entry. Conversation flowed as tasters attempted to identify ingredients!

People's Choice Recipient, Lorrie Bicknell
Tasters were wowed this year by the number of entries, nine.  Even though tasters struggled to select only one "Best Chili", they selected a White Chili entry submitted by Lorrie Bicknell.  Lorrie was thrilled to be recognized among all the delectable options.

The Judge's Choice was a more traditional chili submitted by the Berry Patch in Paradise.  Even though the crew was exhausted by a full day of service to tourists and residents they were delighted to be recognized for their entry.  The photo on the left (left to right) is Grace Hildebrant, Shirley Clark, and Donna Knox.
2017 Judge's Choice Recipient, Berry Patch

Sunday, February 19, 2017

2017, Your Year to Take the Plunge

9and10News/Fox 32
Local weather forecasters are predicting highs of 28 degrees, Saturday, February 25.  A significant downswing in the temperatures from the previous week.  In 2015 the observed temperature of the day was 4 degrees, which compares to 28 degrees in 2016.  Despite the weather conditions today, have no doubt,  winter is still here.  April 2016 brought in an additional 23.75 inches, a solid 15% of the season's snow fall.  Don't delay, 2017 is your year to take the plunge, next year's temperatures may fall into the realm of single digits or one can hardly image, the dreaded below zero range.  So take advantage of the forecast, make plans to Plunge with a family member or friend.

Township Trustee Forrester in 2016
This is the third year that the Paradise Area Chamber of Commerce has coordinated an Ice Festival that includes a menagerie of activities for area residents and visitors to the region.   Polar Plunge activities, a fund raiser for the Whitefish Township Fire Department, begins at 1 PM at Andrus Lake.  For your comfort, hot brats & beverages will be available at Andrus Lake (Just 5.6 miles north of the blinking light in Paradise, turn left on Vermillion Road and you'll see activities on your left.)  Ice fishing demonstrations will be available beginning at 1 PM.  If you are 16 years old and younger, give it a shot!  Our fishing expert will be there to answer questions about ice fishing in the Paradise area.

Brother & Sister in 2016
At about 1:15 pm, an Ice Safety Demonstration provided by recently certified Ice Rescue representatives of the Sugar Island Fire Department will begin.  Many of us have heard the reports of catastrophes throughout the state.  Given the type of weather conditions this winter and the wide range of ice possibilities in the Paradise area, members of the community felt it was time for an ice safety review on behalf of all ages.

Then the fun begins!  Who will accept the call to PLUNGE?  Polar Plunging will be begin shortly after the Ice demonstration!  You can pick up a pledge form at the Paradise Food Pantry, or download one here!  It is a great cause and you know you want to have fun!  Waivers to jump will be available at registration but you can download that here as well.

8 Below
Start the Ice Festival Weekend by enjoying a fine meal at one of the local restaurants then enjoy a free movie, 8 Below, at the Whitefish Township Community Center, 7 PM on Friday evening, February 24.  The movie is free and so is the popcorn.  Fun for the entire family!

Ice Sculptures are not out of the question   Families in our small community are already putting their imaginations to work and determining how they might out do their snow sculptures from January. The challenge in February not unlike January is a quick thaw that has developed.  Anyone hoping to have an entry in the Ice Sculpture contest is to call in their entry at 906-492-3219 or notify the festival coordinator, Nikki at 906-492-3266.

Saturday morning the Whitefish Township Emergency Medical Services Team will be offering a scrambled egg & sausage breakfast along with pancakes and sausage gravy and biscuits.  Serving from 8 until Noon at the Whitefish Township Community Center. This is an ideal opportunity to support the local EMS crew and to say hi to your neighbors.

Cross-Country ski trails are open as well as snow shoe trails.  Saturday the folks at Tahquamenon Falls State Park are offering a guided snowshoe hike, meet at the fact shack of the Upper Falls at 2PM.  If you don't have any snow shoes, they have a few that you could try to determine your level of enthusiasm.  The park is also offering lantern lit trails for your pleasure beginning at 6PM until 8:30.

Another winter market place is open (free) for you to set up either outside or inside the community center, beginning at 10 AM and ending at 2 PM  Participants in the Chili Cook-Off can start setting up in the community center at 11 AM.  Decorate your table and entice tasters to select your chili as the "Best in Paradise
Tasting begins at the Whitefish Township Community Center at Noon.  There is no charge to taste but we ask you to vote for your favorite Chili.  Tasting ends at 1 PM just in time for you to head north to Andrus Lake for the Polar Plunge festivities. 

Don't get cabin fever!  Enjoy a movie, meet with your neighbors at the breakfast Saturday morning, bring the grand kids to Andrus Lake to learn more about Ice Safety, better yet, plunge in and enjoy the fun!

Friday, February 3, 2017

Baking Talents Take Center Stage

Courtesy Sarah Wilde

Tahquamenon Falls Brewery & Pub Chef Noah Judges Competition

The 2017 Paradise Area Snow Bake - Off Baking Competition had 13 entries this year.  Contestants submitted their delectable creations Saturday, January 28, 2017, at the Whitefish Township Community Center.  Local baking enthusiast, Dianne Clark, organized the 2017 Winter Carnival activity and encouraged people within the community to participate.  The Tahquamenon Falls Brewery & Pub, Chef Noah served as the official judge.  After the judging contestants learn of their standings and the community is able to purchase cookies, breads, and pie at noon.

Penny Clark and Event Chairperson, Dianne Clark
 The 2017 event included two divisions, adult and youth.  The categories included Breads, Cookies, and Pies.  Contestants donate their entries to the bake sale and provide a copy of their recipe.  This is the second year of the event. The funds from last year's bake sale were mainly used to develop prizes and gifts for the first place recipients.

In a contentious bout of cookies, Penny Clark of Paradise took first place for her Molasses Crinkles in the Adult Division.  Donna Knox's Delightful Surprise took 2nd place and Linda Bitnar wowed the onlookers with her Double Chocolate Cherry Cookies and 3rd place.
Elsie and Isaac Holden

Always popular with children, the Youth Division had their own battle for best cookies in Paradise.  Elsie Holden took home the blue ribbon with her Wintertime Chocolate Moisties, while Gregory Mills of the Whitefish Township Community Schools, 5th grade took 2nd place with his Monster Granola Cookie Bites!  The Whitefish Township Community Schools 4th Grade Class members: James Johnson, Amber Moody, Wyatt Moore, and Keegan Planck took 3rd place with their Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Many thanks to Sonny Skeans for encouraging students to engaged in such an activity.

On behalf of the 4th Grade Class, Wyatt Moore

This year there was an eclectic group of breads including Carrot Bread and Cinnamon Buns.  In the Adult Division, Penny Clark's Hungarian Nut Bread took 1st place, Marilyn Shooltz' Pumpkin Cake Roll came in 2nd while Jody Laub took 3rd with her popular Banana Bread. In the Youth Division Isaac Holden took first place with his Peanut Butter Muffins.

In the Pie Category, Adult Division, Linda Richards took first place with her Grandmother's Lemon Pie.

Chairperson, Dianne Clark (left) and Linda Richards

Sales from this year's event will be utilized to cover expenses for the 2018 3rd Annual Snow Bake - Off, scheduled for January 27.  Winter is the ideal time to fill the home with the smells of fresh baked breads and to serve the family treats through the winter season!  Encourage  your family or neighbor to participate in the next year's event. 

In the process of embracing the winter months, the Paradise area community is looking forward to their Ice Festival, February 24 – 26.  Starting with the classic movie, 8 Below, at the Whitefish Township Community Library Friday evening, a Free Winter MarketPlace Saturday, Pancake & Sausage Breakfast Saturday morning, Chili Cook-Off, Ice Sculpture Contest, and Polar Plunge, the entire weekend is filled with opportunities for snow mobiles, cross-country skiing, and snow shoe hikes.  Check the Ice Festival Information flyer for further details.

Blueberry Bread

2017 Snow Sculptures

Snow was more than just a little challenge this year in Paradise Michigan!  Hopes for the unlimited possibilities for snow sculpture visions soared as total snowfalls the area reached 110 inches.  Then the "January Thaw" proceeded, melting some five feet of snow and dashing designs of grandeur.  Several more inches fell a few days just before the contest deadline and temperatures dropped. Efforts and designs were underway again!

Our local contestant families went to work and showcased their skills in this year's 2017 Winter Carnival Snow Sculpture Contest.  What better way for a Snow Family to spend time together then ice fishing.  The Holden family architects added a couple of snow tunnels to the property as well.

Snow Family Ice Fishing
Serving as a member on the Wild Blueberry Festival Steering Committee and Chairperson of the Fish Bowl event, it makes sense that the Moore household would have visions of Blueberry Pies, but who would think it could look so appetizing in snow!  Congratulations to the Moores!

Blueberry Pie, Only in Paradise
Holden Family Architects Supporting their  Ice Fishing Family

Moore Family Recognized for the Snow Baking Skills

We thank this event's sponsors, the Berry Patch and The Inn, Gastropub and Smokehouse.

In the process of embracing the winter months, the Paradise area community is looking forward to their Ice Festival, February 24 – 26.  Starting with the classic movie, 8 Below, at the Whitefish Township Community Library Friday evening, a Free Winter MarketPlace Saturday, Pancake & Sausage Breakfast Saturday morning, Chili Cook-Off, Ice Sculpture Contest, and Polar Plunge, the entire weekend is filled with opportunities for snow mobiles, cross-country skiing, and snow shoe hikes.  Check the Ice Festival Information flyer for further details.