Step Into History

CALUMET TOWNSHIP – The Keweenaw National Historical Park and the Western Upper Peninsula Health Department are partnering with a program to get people physically active while getting educated about local history at the same time, according to Arnie Kinnunen.

Kinnunen, who is the health department prevention specialist, said the Step Into History program is funded by a National Park Foundation Active Trails grant applied for by KNHP.

“The idea is to host a series of outdoor activities with a focus in the Calumet area,” he said. “We have some activities in the Hancock area.”

The former Quincy Smelting Works site in Ripley is tentatively planned as one of the sites for the event, Kinnunen said.

The first event will be a snowshoe walk around Calumet Lake from 6 to 7 p.m. Feb. 20, Kinnunen said. The walk starts and ends at Siskiwit Park near Pine and Waterworks streets. There is some on-street parking available. Parking will also be available at the Habitat For Humanity ReStore on Pine Street.

The course for the walk at Calumet Lake is about a mile, Kinnunen said, but participants don’t have to be limited to that.

“If somebody wants to go more, they can,” he said.

There will be snowshoes available for those who don’t have their own, Kinnunen said.

“Call ahead so we can reserve something,” he said.

Kinnunen can be reached at 482-7382, ext. 189.

More than walking is planned for the event at Calumet Lake, Kinnunen said.

‘We’re going to have a bonfire afterwards,” he said.

For each event, Kinnunen said either he or Bridget Durocher will represent the Health Department. There will also be a representative of KNHP to explain the historical significance of each site.

On Feb. 27, Kinnunen said there will be a children’s snowshoe event at Agassiz Park in Calumet during the CopperDog 150 dog sled race. Events are tentatively planned for the entire year, Kinnunen said, and they will be announced as dates are set. Possible events include disc golfing, cross-country skiing, kayaking and geocaching.

There is no cost for any of the Step Into History events, Kinnunen and they are designed for everyone.

“It’s very much family oriented,” he said. “We want to get people moving. I think these are going to be great events for the community.”


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