Introduction to Mount Pleasant, Michigan
The Michigan city of Mount Pleasant, county seat of Isabella County, is seated on the banks of the Chippewa River about 70 miles north of the state capital of Lansing. Serviced principally by U.S. Route 27 and Michigan State Highway 20, Mount Pleasant is home to the main campus of Central Michigan University. The eastern part of the city is on the Isabella Indian Reservation, site of the Soaring Eagle Casino.
Incorporated as a village in 1875 and later as a city in 1889, Mount Pleasant was the site of a major oil strike in the late 1920s which significantly changed the face of the city. Many oil companies established their headquarters in Mount Pleasant and drilling contractors also based their shops and storage facilities in the city, making Mount Pleasant the oil capital of Michigan. The origins of Central Michigan University trace back to 1892, when the Central Michigan Normal School was opened as a teacher-training facility. The school was renamed the Central State Teacher's College in 1927 before becoming the Central Michigan College of Education in 1941 and later the Central Michigan College in 1955. In 1959 the school changed names for the final time, becoming Central Michigan University.
Things to do in Mount Pleasant
Mount Pleasant's Native American heritage and rich history, together with the splendor of the area's natural attractions, give visitors a wide variety of things to see and enjoy. The Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe, a significant part of the Mount Pleasant community, is also a dynamic contributor to the area's wealth of attractions. The Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort is the largest gaming facility in the Midwest, with over 4,000 slot machines, well over 100 table games, and world class entertainment. The Tribe's proud cultural heritage is displayed in the Ziibiwing Cultural Center, which also includes a research center, meeting and conference facilities, cafe, and gift shop. The annual "Saginaw Chippewa Pow Wow" is an August festival which attracts dancers and drummers from all over the nation and which provides visitors the opportunity to sample traditional Native American food and experience many elements of Native culture.
Nature lovers won't want to pass up a trip to the Florence Maxwell Sanctuary, a 40-acre preserve ideal for bird watching. The Chippewa River is an ever-present venue offering fishing, canoeing, and many other outdoor activities. Golf enthusiasts can enjoy 13 courses within a 30-minute drive of the city, and more than 15 local parks provide an abundance of opportunities for picnicking, swimming, biking, hiking, sledding, cross country skiing, and more. The Mount Pleasant area also houses many great military memorials including the Michigan Vietnam State Memorial, constructed in 1990 by local Vietnam veterans and volunteers to honor all Michigan natives who sacrificed their lives by name and those listed as Missing in Action. Also located in Mount Pleasant are the W.W.I and W.W.II Memorials and the Korean Memorial.
Fans of college sports can enjoy an abundance of athletic competition right in town. The Central Michigan University Chippewas compete in NCAA's Division I as part of the Mid-American Conference. Fans of horse racing can watch thoroughbred and quarter horse action from May through September at the Mount Pleasant Meadows. For professional sports, there are a couple of Minor League Baseball teams not too far away. The nearby city of Midland, 30 minutes to the east, is home to the Great Lakes Loons, a Class-A affiliate of the Los Angeles Dodgers. A little further away in the state capital of Lansing are the Lansing Lugnuts, a Class-A affiliate of the Toronto Blue Jays. The Loons and Lugnuts both compete in the Midwest League.