Childhood Reflections of Michigan’s Mackinac Bridge
I (David) grew up in a small village called Middleville, roughly 25 miles south of Grand Rapids, Michigan, in the mid-1950s. As a child, I can remember my mom making a big deal about visiting the Mackinac Bridge, commonly referred to by Michiganders as “the Mighty Mac”.
The Mackinaw Bridge (pronounced mack-in-aw) was roughly a four hour drive from our home and it was not uncommon for our family to drive “up north” for the day solely to picnic within eyeshot of the bridge.
As we neared the bridge, we would begin to see big red and white signs announcing that Sea Shell City was just down the road. It was one of those touristy places filled with objects certain to delight the imagination of any young boy.
Plus, we all giggled as we would try to say Sea Shell City fast without saying “sea shell shitty”. Try it. See if you can do it. For reasons unknown to my childish mind, saying sea shell shitty was an acceptable use of profanity, while use of the word in its noun form was certain to find a bar of Dial soap scrapped across your teeth.
Completed in 1957, the Mackinac Bridge is 5 miles long, is currently the world’s fifth largest suspension bridge, and ushers four lanes of traffic some 200 feet above the turbulent waters of the Straits of Mackinac below.
If you find yourself exploring the northern regions of Michigan’s lower peninsula, a drive and picnic overlooking the Mackinac Bridge is highly recommended.
Link: Mackinac Bridge Website
Photo credit: Michigan.org website
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