Nestled along Northern Michigan's snow belt, Caberfae Peaks Ski & Golf Resort sends visitors careening down 34 different ski runs, offering a total of 485 feet of vertical drop. Its location near Lake Michigan helps the resort average more than 150 inches of annual snowfall per year. Beyond skiing and snowboarding, the frosty harvest enables the resort to offer other wintery activities.
Away from the slopes, visitors relax inside Blackmer Day Lodge, a cozy facility outfitted with cathedral ceilings, a two-story stone fireplace, and rustic exposed timber. Extended stays, meanwhile, unfold at Mackenzie Lodge, located right at the base of the slopes, where an outdoor heated pool and hot tub await to help guests relax or cook lobsters they brought with them in their suitcases. And, during months when a heated pool isn't necessary, Caberfae challenges golfers with a scenic nine-hole course peppered with wetlands, ravines, and fairways lined with 75-foot trees.
Pine River Paddlesports Center provides equipment and a private campground to give city dwellers and nature lovers a chance to breathe the fresh air of the Manistee National Forest. The Pine River campground charms tootsies with natural grass and soothes fussy eardrums with birdsong, burbling river water, and smooth-jazz-playing squirrels. A fire ring and an adjustable grill allow for a hot-dog roast in the evening and an egg fry in the morning. Perfect for sunlight-soaked family thrills, a host of activities—including a climbing wall and a Frisbee golf course—abut the placid campground.
Voted top public golf course in a Golf Digest reader's choice survey, Forest Dunes Golf Club's pristine 18-hole course, designed by Tom Weiskopf, spreads majestically across pine forests, birch groves, grasslands, and sand dunes. Spend a full day away from the tedium of work, chores, and meteorite attacks by navigating the lush landscapes of the par 72 course, steering a golf cart through multiterrain fairways and swinging your way through well-manicured grounds. Links lovers can practice their subtle strokes on the putting green and blast dimpled spheres at the practice range, perfecting swings and diffusing anger acquired after learning Pinocchio is a work of fiction. Although it's not included in this Groupon, golfers can grab a bite or slurp a drink in the clubhouse after a hard day of leisure.
Founded by Traverse City natives Sam Porter and Abby Walton Porter, Porterhouse Productions operates several festivals and special events in the northern Michigan region. The company has run the annual Microbrew & Music Festival, an Evening with Mario Batali, and other recreational events, from concerts to culinary events.
Black Bear Golf Club accommodates golfers of all levels with a lush, 19-hole spread. Golf outings equip green-wanderers with a golf cart to whisk them across the tree-lined course. Black Bear’s extra hole means a free par 3 warm-up shot that’s perfect for attempting Arnold Palmer’s famous victory prance. A choice of cold beer or a soft drink ensures carbonated comfort across the remaining 18 holes, which are set on a diverse terrain of rolling foliage and Scottish links–style holes. Linksters can choose an item from the Black Bear Grill's menu, and a large bucket of range balls warm up frosty games.
The Dirty Dog Dash challenges participants to take on 5 kilometers of rigorous outdoor obstacles, mountainous Michigan terrain, and friendly competition as a tribute to America’s servicemen and women. Gather a gaggle of Groupon-holding speedsters or fly solo to tackle the race’s endurance-testing hurdles, including fire pits, balance beams, barbed wire, sand hills, and muddy slopes. Mad dashers that cross the coveted finish line will be adorned with a Dirty Dog Dash commemorative T-shirt, a beer ticket (for those 21 and older), and refueling refreshments. Spectators and contestants alike can then enjoy a post-race party, which includes live music, beverages, and an awards ceremony that recognizes those with the fastest time in their category, as well as racers with the craziest costumes, which are enthusiastically encouraged but not required.