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Are you ready for the 2017 International Rally to be held in Escanaba, MI July 22-29? What? You haven’t registered nor reserved a campsite? Well, you may still make plans to attend, whether you have registered yet or not. Here’s how:
There are private and public campgrounds near Escanaba and you might be able to secure a site by calling around. A nice campground 15 miles south of Escanaba that I like is O B Fuller Park http://www.deltacountyparks.com/fuller-campground.html (906-786-1020).

There is a campground at the Island Resort & Casino, west of Escanaba http://www.islandresortandcasino.com/
hotel (800-682-6040). I plan to stay there in late May.

Boondocking in the Hiawatha National Forest might suit you. Contact the Rapid River office for advice (906-474-6442). You might browse campsites listed at www.recreation.gov or call 877-444-6777. Free campsites are at the Bay de Noc Grand Island trail head. This trail head is located east and north of Rapid River. I have often boondocked there. I usually prefer a pull-through. This is a first-come, first-served
shared horse camp.

OK, once you have secured your campsite, you will want to register for the International.  If you show up for the International without pre-registering, there is a $50 surcharge. Day Passes are also available for entry to all the events on that day.

Now, let’s get to the good stuff: FOOD! You already know a bit about a few foods that are unique to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan from reading our previous articles.
Squeaky Cheese: Most Northern Yoopers already know that this is called Juustoa or Juustoleipa or Leipajuusto. It is sometimes called bread cheese. This Finnish cheese is found around the UP, and can also be ordered from UP Foods by calling Dan or Carol Sarazin at 906-296-0725. See their website: www.upfoods.com . Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

UP Foods also sells Thimbleberry Jam - definitely a UP specialty. When Andrew Zimmern of the Travel Channel visited the UP, he filmed the campfire preparation of Juustoa. (It was served with Thimbleberry jam from UP Foods!)
You can make your own Juustoa by starting with two gallons of milk. (Tradition calls for the first milk from a cow who has recently calved.). Add sugar, cornstarch, salt and rennet in a specific sequence. Drain the whey. Bake, broil, flip it, broil.... oh, forget it and just buy it!

Finnish Pancake: Kropsua or Kropser or Pannukkau
You canr 4 eggs
1/4 - 1/2 cup of white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
1 1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup butter
Heat oven to 400 - 425 degrees. Melt butter in oven in a cake pan. Mix sugar, flour, salt and add beaten eggs and milk. Blend. Turn (hot) pan to make sure that the butter coats all sides. Then add batter and bake for 30 minutes. It will puff up when baking and flatten when cool. Cut into squares and serve - with syrup, jelly or honey.

Fish Fry: For this meal, you must go out. The UP has excellent fish fries! Whitefish, cod, perch or smelt may be on the menu. I recently joined a picnic attended by 288 Yoopers in Lake Havasu City, AZ. I asked several folks from Escanaba where they go for a fish fry. Here’s their advice:
In Escanaba, choose from the Freshwater Tavern (in the Terrace Bay Inn); Crispigna’s; House of Ludington; or Pacinos. In Wells, The Buck Inn. In Rapid River, The Swallow Inn; or Jack’s Restaurant (Swedish Rye rolls are served with the fish fry). South on M-35, The Ford River Pub & Grill.
Take your pick - and enjoY!

Category: 2017 Escanaba, MI