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Holiday celebration set for Mackinaw City

May 24, 2013
The Mining Journal

MACKINAW CITY (AP) - Two-hundred people wearing 18th century clothing will re-enact historical events at Fort Michilimackinac in Mackinaw City on Memorial Day weekend.

The 51st annual Fort Michilimackinac Pageant is repeated three times over the holiday weekend, with shows at 3:30 p.m. Saturday and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday and Memorial Day.

"Anyone may participate," pageant committee President Meghan Michalak said. "One year, we had a family who watched the pageant the first day and asked how to participate the next year. I had a few costumes and told them to come back the next day wearing them.

"We have practices, but in reality, no one shows up. People have been doing the main parts for years and there are enough veteran, return cast members to help new participants."

The pageant is free, though organizers are seeking donations, Michalak said. The fort is opened for tours after the pageants at a cost of $11 for adults and $6.50 for children ages 5-17.

The French colonized the Straits of Mackinac in 1671, building a mission on the Upper Peninsula side in what is now St. Ignace. In 1715, they built a fort across the straits in the northern Lower Peninsula in what now is Mackinaw City. The British took over the area in 1761 after their victory in the French and Indian War. The fort now is a National Historic Landmark.



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