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Emanuel Discusses His Plan to Bicycle Around Lake Michigan After He Leaves Office

This morning at the ribbon-cutting for a streetscape project in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood, Mayor Rahm Emanuel confirmed a tip I’d heard earlier this week, that after he leaves office on May 20 he will depart on a bicycle trip around the perimeter of Lake Michigan.

“The next morning after not being mayor, I’m starting at Montrose,” Emanuel said, referring to a beach next to the Lakefront Trail, not far from his home in the Ravenswood community. He said he’ll be riding about 70 miles a day with an old friend who was his roommate when Emanuel went to go to work for President Bill Clinton in Little Rock, Arkansas.

“I want you to know I love you all, but when I’m up in the [Upper Peninsula of Michigan] I won’t be thinking about you,” Emanuel told the crowd. “I’ve really have always wanted to bike the entire lake, but I was shocked, I should have researched this before I came up with it. It’s a thousand miles. I should have found something that’s about 500.”

Emanuel and his friend bike regularly on city streets, the mayor said. “We both had this dream. I’ve never found the time [to do the trip] with all the other things that are my responsibilities, so that’s what I’m going to do. So I look forward to it.”

After the presser, Emanuel told me he plans to ride his lightweight Parlee road bike. “I bought it as my midlife crisis bike when I turned 50,” he said.

Will he be staying in B and B’s or camping? “I’m 59 man. I need a shower the next morning.”

I’ve ridden the entire perimeter of Lake Michigan myself, over the course of a few different bike-and-transit excursions. I recommended to Emanuel that he stop at Legs Inn, a cliffside Polish restaurant in a remote location 25 miles north of Petoskey, Michigan, near the top of the Lower Peninsula. The eatery is known for being decorated with bizarre folk art carvings, and it has a mind-blowing view of the sunset over the lake.

Emanuel accomplished quite a bit for Chicago bicycling during his eight years in office, so here’s wishing him a safe and enjoyable journey, free of flat tires.

JOHN GREENFIELD MAY 10, 2019 STREETSBLOG CHICAGO FULL ARTICLE HERE

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THRILLIST FOOD & DRINK: THE BEST SMALL-TOWN RESTAURANT IN EVERY STATE

Along with providing enough fodder for three full Springsteen/Mellencamp collaboration albums (make it happen, boys!), America’s small towns are home to some serious culinary action. Like a championship track team from the ‘70s or a native who went on to become a featured actor on a now-canceled sitcom, they are often the pride of the town for generations, and often exist as the very thing that puts a village on a map. 

The restaurants on this list represent the absolute best small-town restaurants in the country, ranging from fine dining experiences in historic farmhouses to roadside diners, BBQ pits, and seaside shacks. Some are part of vibrant small communities far from cities (no, we’re not talking suburbs). Others are outposts doing business seemingly at the end of the world, stretching the concept of “town” all the way down to one resident. They’re all destination-worthy. And who knows -- maybe you’ll fall in love with the towns themselves over a gigantic plate of something unforgettable. 

MICHIGAN: Legs Inn

Cross Village
Population: 294

Look, it's unlikely that you've ever sat down and dreamed of hanging out in a Polish hobbit house whose owners are weirdly obsessed with stove legs. But that very, very specific fantasy scenario is what you get in this little upper-lower Michigan oddity, a stone/log building overlooking the glorious Lake Michigan whose roof is lined with stove legs like some sort of folk-art rampart. Inside, you'll find the best Polish food north of Hamtramck, with massive platters of sausages and pierogies served in the indoor beer hall or on the garden veranda, and hunter's stew bringing warmth on cold nights (the massive array of Polish vodka helps there, too). And since you'll never want to leave, the place has cabins near the beach, meaning you have no excuse to not eat and drink to your heart's content. Weird, yes. But once you enter, you'll never look at the legs of your appliances again. -- AK (Published On 02/16/2018)

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LEGS INN named one of "Michigan's 31 Most Iconic & Classic Restaurants" by Thrillist.com

LEGS INN named one of "Michigan's 31 Most Iconic & Classic Restaurants" by Thrillist.com

"Nestled along an absolutely stunning piece of Lake Michigan shoreline, this restaurant was built in 1921 by its original owner, a retired Polish auto worker who fell in love with the forests and quiet of Northern Michigan and its Ottawa and Chippewa cultures. The building is pieced together, and includes a curio shop, living quarters, tavern, balcony, dining room, and four great stone fireplaces. All this ambience stuff is fine and dandy, but what we really go here for is the kielbasa and pierogi. On the damn lake."

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