Whether you are rooted in Leelanau County for all or just a portion of the year, the magic of a Northern Michigan summer can be captured in stories and tales and shared for generations to come. The Beach Bards, a group that gathers around a brimming fire on the shores of Lake Michigan, offers a forum for spicing up a warm summers evening with enchanting stories, poems, and tales of adventure.
The Beach Bards, modeled after the Stone Circle, near Elk Rapids, began when Norm Wheeler and Bob Sutherland decided to bring the same style of storytelling and sharing to the beaches of Glen Arbor. Along with a group of local writers and poets, the two began hosting the weekly campfire ritual, orating tales for both the young and old. For over two decades they have shared their love of storytelling with many, and with the accumulation of years, attendees who came as children now bring their own children to participate.
With such a longstanding tradition, a newcomer may be hesitant to join, but the group is open to everyone and the dynamic changes weekly. At 8:30pm, the circle caters to children and at 10pm, the “adult” version is open to everyone without a curfew.
The Beach Bards bonfire is located on Lake Michigan at The Leelanau School. Cross the Crystal River and follow the boardwalk to the beach. The first meeting this summer will be held this Friday, June 26th and begins at 8:30pm. Bring a blanket, appropriate attire and see you there!
Photo credit: HOT STUFF by 1Cher