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Upcoming 2014 Tours Schedule

August 1, 2014 – Arts, Amish & Adventure If you ever wondered about the Olde Order Amish, you will have an incredible opportunity to meet them and see their homes. We go to a Mennonite Market and are toured by our gifted docent. Food products made by the ladies will be available for tasting. An Amish bulk food store, an Amish meal and buggy rides round out the morning.  Every time we go to this unusual home, one lady or another just has to hold the babies. Cuteness to the nth degree.  The trip to an Amish farm gives us a peak into bedrooms to look at quilts is certainly not to be beat. The most unique parts of the tour is the coffinmaker who tells us about Amish burials as we tour his workshop and home, and then off to an Amish Pharmacy where we see Old World concoctions. We have other off-the-beaten-track stops. Experience this unique world of horse and buggies, and mouth-watering home cooked Amish meals. There is something here for everyone. $80/person

August 8, 2014 – Art and Propaganda in Nazi-Occupied Holland – The images represented in this exhibition evoke the horrors of war experienced by Hollanders during World War II and the despair and suffering of  German concentration camps. Some of them display the blatant propaganda of the Nazi Party which was meant to encourage the Dutch population to support the German Wehrmacht against  the forces of Bolshevism. Dutch and Allied posters from the Holland Museum collection that countered these images are also exhibited. We will make a stop in Grand Rapids and have a docent led tour to a Jewish Cemetery and a speaker at lunch. 

August 15, 2014 – Journey to Faith Hope & Healing – Tour the beautiful and historic Basilica and National Shrine of Our Lady of Consolation in honor of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Tour features a prayer service, including a mass for pilgrims in the upper basilica, stations of the cross, Rosary and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. The tour also includes a lunch stop at The Docks, Toledo's popular dining district and the Libbey Glass Outlet in Findlay, Ohio.  This tour will occur every year on August 15. This is an ideal tour for Catholics and those of faith of all ages.  

August 21, 2014 – Tiffany On Display – See the work of one of America’s most influential Tiffany designers at the Kalamazoo Institute of Art.  In the three exhibitions, visitors will delight in the range of Tiffany's design work: his sumptuous Art Nouveau jewelry, spectacular leaded-glass lamps and windows, and exquisite work in blown glass, metals, and mosaics.  Over 30 pieces of jewelry and 17 lamps, and then a variety of ceramics, metals, and mosaics are on display in Kalamazoo in this docent-led tour. The Institute's gift shop is sure to astound. The tour will be complemented with a trip to a Glazier's studio as well as a view of historic sacred windows. We will also enjoy a stop at a "glass" gift shop.     

August 22, 2014 – Rolling Hills And Wine And Cheese Tour – Discover the Lake Erie Shores and Islands Wine Trail, with brisk lake breezes, picturesque views of vineyards amid some of the country's most scenic vistas between Toledo and Cleveland. We'll visit three wineries, enjoy award winning wines, stop for lunch, visit unusual off-the-beaten-track historic sites, and stop at the Cheese Shop & Candy store in Port Clinton. You will be able to purchase wine, fruit and other unique items.  

August 26, 2014 – Marvelous Resale Madness – Lipstick up ladies. We are discovering very little known boutiques and once you see them with your own eyes, you will be back for more glam galore. Takes place from cusp of Detroit to Ann Arbor. Lots of finger foods. Lots of full bellies. Maybe you'll find some cool jellies for summer fun. Prizes for the best "steal of a deal." You will hear about what makes products unique. There will be "pop up" stores along the way. Lunch included.  

September 9, 2014 – Downton Abbey: Ford Style – Learn about the American side of Downton Abbey-style house staff.  See where they worked and lived and how they interacted with the family.  Enjoy the Grosse Pointe coastal area with a docent tour of Edsel Eleanor Ford House and grounds, neighborhood drive through and see the historical St Paul’s Cathedral which dates back to 1790.  

September 11, 2014 – Beacons of Light – Michigan lighthouses all have their own unique look and stories and are a perfect subject for a summer tour... Some lighthouses still shine for ships, others share their stories as museums, and some as a bed and breakfast.  On this day trip, we'll visit lighthouses in Port Austin and Harbor Beach, enjoy the St. Clair  River, and a beautiful one and a half hour sightseeing cruise aboard the Huron Lady II, taking in the view of the Fort Gratiot Lighthouse. Lunch and an ice cream stop are included. 

September 23, 2014 – Chocolate, Cheese & Churches – What could be more sensational than a combination of the three C's in Kalamazoo? This is such an interesting group of places to explore.  We will have a cheese tasting in the hard, soft, Blues and more.  Your taste buds are sure to enjoy this.  Besides, you'll learn so much about cheeses.  Then, we will visit two historic churches in Kalamazoo.  The most sensational place for lunch is hidden off the beaten track and will be in a historic mansion. Dessert will be at a confectionary which is quite different from the big name chocolateers.  The icing on the cake is a visit to a historic church governed by a fascinating priest who was a cardiologist.  Now, he is in his second career saving souls and what a great job he does.  There will be cold coolers on the bus for your (and my) purchases.  Again, little known places to discover!  included. 

September 25, 2014 – Historic Holy Toledo Churches – Time to take a tour of a variety of churches in the Toledo area such as Queen of Most Holy Rosary Cathedral, historical St Patrick’s Church, Trinity Episcopal, a Synagogue along with many others as you learn the history and how the people felt about their churches.  We will visit Catholic religious goods stores as well as others.  Expect to look at some wonderful gift items.  A visit to a convent is possible as well.  Bring cameras!  

October 7, 2014 – Historic Flint Churches & Cemeteries – Vehicle City is Flint, Michigan – the place where the bricks and bridges and buildings of the City have dozens of stories to tell – stories of Native American trails, lumber and carriage-making industries, and the birthplace of General Motors. There are so many fascinating places to explore in Michigan's Best Kept Secret City.  Re-enactors will tell story of how Flint grew.  We'll even hear the "good juice" of by gone days and crazy arguments between David Buick and Louis Packard along with the famous "Babes & Berets", Genora Johnson actress who demanded fair working conditions during the renowned GM Sit Down Strike.  Yet, everything revolves around the churches, and that's where our story starts during this fascinating tour. 

October 9, 2014 – Historic Detroit Buildings – In-depth tours of the Fisher Building, Guardian Building, Cadillac Building and Penobscot Building with lunch at a historic hotel.

October 14, 2014 – Fall Color Tour – Enjoy our colorful autumn cider mill tour and freshly made delicious donuts at this unique mill.  Then we'll visit a historical site, buzz up to Birch Run for a 2-hour shopping trip and then onto the Flint  Institute of Arts for an hour stop to view a portion of the permanent  collection. A delicious lunch, cider, donuts and ice cream are included.  

November 14-16, 2014 – Deer Widows Retreat: Shop, Dance & Dine – Holiday Lights Galore in Petoskey & Harbor Springs.  Great way to experience up north in a custom-tailored tour like no other.  Friday: Lots of great demo's in unique spaces – antiquing tables; glass blowing; pottery and a very cool store.  Meal provided on the way to the mitten's northeast.  Check into hotel with a wine to welcome winter.  Then off to a bookstore for a very fun commentary of great books recommended just for us complimented with cheese and of course, wine.  Then line, belly & international dancing.  Prizes awarded.  Saturday is all about seeing the Holiday lights in Petoskey.  Stores have deep discounts. Dinner on your own but with the group.  Indulge your inner astronomer for a once-in-a-lifetime star show with exceptionally starry skies and hear our guide tell us all about the night skies. Sunday will see us enjoying a wine tasting at an all time sensational winery, a demo at a studio, and lunch. $50.00 Deposit requried to hold your spot with full payment due by October 17, 2014.
$250/person (based on double occupancy)

December 2, 2014 – Christmas With The Amish – Experience an “old-fashioned” Christmas – Amish Style by invitation only by a private family.  Enjoy mouthwatering home cooked Amish meal in a private, Amish home with oil lights, demonstrations and see horse and buggies on the road, enroute to their various destinations. Be prepared to purchase bread, jams and much more.  Activities will include: Amish cheese-making demo, Beeswax candle-making demo, Amish Christmas traditions explained, Amish preacher giving a traditional sermon, Amish Christmas brunch as they would serve and celebrate with family and friends, Quilts displayed in home, Visit an Amish Schoolhouse, An Amish department store with variety of traditional and up-to-date merchandise, Buggy/sleigh rides (This cost not included in the trip fee and is on your own.) 

December 5, 2014 – Kellogg House Holiday – Guided tour of the beautifully decorated W. K. Kellogg Manor House ending with hot spiced tea and cookies. There will be 32 artists and vendors selling one-of-a-kind gifts for your holiday shopping pleasure! 

December 12, 2014 – Greenfield Village Holiday Nights – Step into a Christmas card from the past.  It’s America’s premier holiday celebration, complete with candlelit paths, live entertainment, costumed presenters, horse-drawn wagon and Model T Rides, delightful holiday shops, Santa and live reindeer, ice skating, caroling, spectacular fireworks and more.  NOTE: This tour involves a lot of walking. Must have payment by November 19 in order to purchase advance tickets.  

December 18, 2014 – Holiday Lights in Southeastern MI – We'll start with a filling meal along the way in order for the sky to darken. Then we'll take in the Christmas Lights in metro Detroit – we'll see blue lit trees, nativities, amazing displays on buildings, a holiday lobby and plenty of other places designed to delight. Naturally, we'll make a couple of shopping stops in very unusual stores.  Hour & half stop at MGM Casino.

Check frequently. New tours are being added!