A list of easy ways to appreciate Michigan on its 181st birthday

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Today is a special day for Michiganders — it's the Great Lakes State's birthday! On this day in 1837, the state was officially admitted to the Union, making it the 26th state to join the good old U.S. of A.

Almost two centuries later, Michigan remains a place of both natural beauty and industrial might. We have a thriving manufacturing industry as well as some of the most stunning vistas in the country — nah, the world.



We could wax poetic all day about the prodigious nature of this state, but you need only to take a look at photos of our beaches, idyllic small towns, serene hiking trails, and that nebulous place we like to call "Up North" to understand why we feel so proud to call this state home.

OK, this is starting to sound like a Pure Michigan commercial.



Looking for ways to celebrate this exciting day? You could throw a Made-in-Michigan party using all locally made goods. Here's a how-to guide. Or you could look at these cool old state maps. Or you could consider our wealth of stunning, historic churches. Or you could ponder the legacy of the Ford Motor Company and its effect on the state.

There are also a lot of brand names that come from Michigan. You could add them to your grocery list — hey, it's just a suggestion!

You could also go to a party at Arbor Brewing Company, they're throwing shindigs at their Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti locations. The DNR Outdoor Adventure Center is also having a party a celebration.

Happy 181st birthday, Michigan! You look great!

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