There will be four concurrent field trip options available for attendees to select among when completing their meeting registration. Field trips will occur at various locations throughout the Eastern Upper Peninsula to showcase the diverse environment of the U.P. and provide educational information regarding the Great Lakes and their natural resources.
Tribal Natural Resource Management
- Stops include Sugar Island, Chippewa Ottowa Resource Authority, St. Marys Area of Concern (AOC), Bay Mills Indian Community, and Point Iroquois Lighthouse.
- Topics include local natural resources and the community college, tribal involvement in restoration of AOC, and rapids restoration.
Commercial Fisheries and Aquaculture in the Northern Great Lakes
- Stops include a hatchery, Cloverland Electric Hydropowerplant, and Fish House.
- Topics include fish processing, machinery and equipment, product sampling, and freshwater research and education.
Diversifying Small Coastal Town Economies
- Stops include Boat Building School, township marina, and a boat tour.
- Topics include Les Cheneaux Islands, Hessel Marina, a local culinary school, and the oldest Criscraft Dealer in the nation: Mertaugh Boat Works.
Paddling the Great Lakes
- Two guided kayaking outings are available:
- Soo Locks (3 hours long): The trip begins on the Upper St. Marys river and goes with the flow downstream for 7 miles. It includes a trip through the locks to experience the 21-foot drop in water levels, just like the freighters. After being released from the locks, kayakers are guided down the St. Marys with much history, natural environment, and functioning business on both shores of the river to talk about. Be ready for a challenging and rewarding trip as you paddle between the twin Saults.
- Lower River Island (2 hours long): This trip will take you through a chain of islands with a chance to view wildlife, see lake freighters up close, and get the history that influenced this area. There are opportunities to get out and hike on one of the islands as well.
- All trips include kayak/stand-up paddleboard, guide, personal flotation device, and paddle. Please dress appropriately for all trips.
- Please note that the kayak field trip options are offered at an additional price. When selecting this option during registration, the fee will be automatically added to your purchase upon selecting a kayaking trip.