RV Adventures with Bug Smacker

Aune-Osborn Campground

Let the parade of Ships begin!

Aune-Osborn Campground is the best place in Michigan that we have found to watch the ships on the Great Lakes go by. It is amazing how close you are to the ships as they pass by you on their way to and from the locks just up the river.

It has been quite some time since we were last up here. We have been recommending this place to anyone we know going to the U.P. but had forgotten ourselves just how incredible the place is. Just like most of the places we are stopping at on this trip up to the Upper Pennusila, we just don’t have enough time to stay and enjoy it all.

Aune-Osborn Campground

Aune-Osborn Campground

Aune-Osborn Campground

Aune-Osborn Campground

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Straits State Park

Mackinac BridgeWhen you make a reservation at a park you can sometimes be in for quite a surprise when you arrive and see what the campsite actually looks like. This was the case when we arrived at the Straits State Park. It was much nicer than we had expected. The site description and photos gave us the impression that we may have some issues with the size and orientation of the spot we reserved. We assumed it was a close-quarters situation with us directly facing our neighbors.

When we arrived, we were quite pleased to find a large, level, 50 amp campsite. Not at all what we had expected. The park was kept clean. At the Straights State Park, there are upper and lower campground areas. The upper has larger sites while the lower is closer to the water and Mackinac Bridge viewing.

For a dollar, you can catch a trolly ride into St. Ignace. In town, you can grab a bite to eat, do some shopping or just find a spot to watch the ferries cross back and forth from the island. If you have never been to Mackinac Island you will want to make sure you make the time to do this as well. It is a trip by itself.

Straits State Park Straits State Park Straits State Park Straits State Park Straits State Park


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Bay City State Park

Currently, we are back at the Bay City State Park to spend some time with the grandkids before our trip up north.  The kids just love the Spray By The Bay, which is the park’s splash pad. There is also a nice playground as well as the beach on the shore of Saginaw Bay. We all had a blast!

splash pad splash pad


Bay City State Park Bay City State Park

Here I am posing next to the infamous Big Booty Tree. The kids thought this was just hilarious.

Big Booty Tree

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Churchgrove Park

our campsiteI know it has been a month since my last post. I know here in Michigan, that’s pretty much an entire summer…LOL

We are back in Churchgrove Park. This has now become our go-to place here in Michigan. We love the place, the community, the people, the shops and the restaurants. We have now been here a month and it really doesn’t seem like we need to even move yet.

This time of year is Michigan home-grown sweet corn time. That means that it is time for Mexican Street Corn (Elote) from Pablos. If you have never tried the stuff, you are missing out.

While we are on the subject of food, my wife needed to test out her new kitchen so she whipped up this delicious Blueberry Pie. I am glad to see that the kitchen works. That will come in handy if we ever need to eat when we can’t find a chef nearby.

Poblanos Blueberry Pie

There was no lack of entertainment for us to enjoy. Each Friday night the town-sponsored Friday Fun Nights. Local musicians would come into town to play on the street corners.

Sunday nights brought us Concerts in the Park. This featured cover bands like the Sinatra Experience, Beach Party Boys, Tribute to Neil Diamond, Bee Gees Stayin’ Alive Tribute, Country Legends and Hotel California – Tribute to the Eagles.

Magic BusLast weekend was the Summer Music Fest. During the day it featured Polka music but at night they cranked it up a notch. Our favorite local band is called the Magic Bus and we were lucky enough to catch their show here in Frankenmuth. Their warmup band was called the  Hubcaps and they weren’t too bad either.

On the day we planned on packing up to leave we got new neighbors. The Hi-Lo Camper Club moved into the campground.

You know that feeling when some talks so close to your face that you can feel each breath pound against your cheeks. These people set up their camp so close to our RV that my awning will cover his rig if I put it out. Funny thing is that this campground has no designated campsites, so he could park virtually anywhere else. As Stephanie Tanner from the TV sitcom Full House  used to say “How Rude, How Very Rude!”

The Old Neighbors.

old neighbors

The Hi-Lo Club.

upclose new neighbors


Finally, I want to say how great it was seeing my good friend Elden Bender again. Seems as if these summers pass us by way too quickly. How time flies. Safe travels to you and Bev. See you next year.

Elden Bender

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Outdoor Adventures – Saginaw Bay Resort

Let me throw some words at you to help describe our stay at Saginaw Bay Resort this time.

  • full-hookups
  • stinky
  • hayride
  • noisy
  • burnt eggs
  • cramped
  • playground
  • peeping tom
  • mud
  • putt putt
  • slow wifi
  • business closed
  • new friends

Terri and I arrived at the park in 2 vehicles. We immediately starting searching for a full hookup site. There was only one full hookup site available so we promptly grabbed it.

campgroundWe had not been here in years, so we had forgotten how difficult it is finding these sites. Most people return to this park several times a year and make arrangements with the other guests to grab them upon their return.

This place has not changed very much since our last trip here. We really didn’t see any improvements. The campground still had the very stinky water, tight campsites (in fact our neighbor was only inches from our slideout), over clorinated pool, slow wifi, and muddy roads. Let me tell you when it rains here some of the campsites and roads become virtually unusable. For the amount of money, this place brings in you would think they could make some kind of effort to improve the place.

To top it off most of our favorite places to eat in the area are gone or not worth visiting anymore. The Pinney Market has a new name and no longer has the fried chicken, Tonys Taco was closed, Granton Inn was closed, even the breakfast at the campground was burnt. Worst of all H & H Bakery was absolutely horrible now.

I was really looking forward to pizza and pasta night at H & H and found it to be nothing like it was the last time I was there. Wednesdays used to have a loaded buffet with a nice salad bar and several pizzas to choose from. The place would be packed with people. Now they have only one pizza to choose from and only a couple of tables of people who don’t even like the pizza they brought out.

hh-bakery-buffet customers

On a positive note, if you enjoy the sound of barking dogs, then this is the place for you. Our neighbors had two of them. One of the dogs even had a cone over its head that turned it into a Barking Megaphone! The owners must have gone deaf from all this racket because they didn’t even attempt to control these critters. I think that is what gets to me the most.

To switch gears a bit, there was one evening where a woman came running out of the shower rooms screaming. Evidently, she noticed a cellphone above the shower door while she and her daughter were in there taking a shower. She grabbed it from a young boy. 4 police cars showed up for this event.

The best part of this trip was meeting Karlos and his wife Vicki. These are a couple of very nice people and we enjoyed spending time with them. You need to check out the Antenna System he has incorporated into his RV. It is quite impressive. Hope to catch up with these guys again sometime soon.


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