A FACELIFT? A makeover?
No, those terms don’t adequately describe what’s just begun at the Holiday Inn in Marquette.
How about “total body transformation”? (See rendering of the new hotel above, the current one below)
“Every surface inside and out will be redone,” says architect Barry Polzin. “We’ll be taking it down to the bones.”
Yep, the quaint but tired 1960s look of our Holiday Inn will soon be gone. The project will be done in phases so that the hotel can still accommodate guests during construction, and should take about a year to complete.
New walls, new flooring, new windows, new doors, new bathroom fixtures, new lighting fixtures, new furniture. The guest rooms will be slightly expanded, and the total rooms–currently 191–will be slightly reduced.
“It’ll be a modern, absolutely beautiful hotel,” says GM Tim Larson.
It’s happening not a moment too soon, what with the new hotels, Staybridge Suites and My Place, elbowing their way onto Marquette’s hospitality scene. Plus the Hampton Inn on the lake still looks fresh and new, and the Landmark Inn has been updating its rooms over the last couple of years.
Holiday Inn is a brand known all around the world, but most tourists and traveling business people prefer their chain hotels to be updated and modern. The Holiday Inn was built in 1967 and, while there’s been some expansion and relatively small changes over the last few decades, it still looks…….old.
This change will be different. Much different.
YOU MIGHT WANT to cross SkyWest Airlines off your Christmas card list this year.
In view of the fact that more and more passengers are flying into and out of Sawyer Airport, and the passenger loads have been high, SkyWest, the regional carrier for Delta, has decided to…….cancel the early morning flight to Detroit, and the late arrival flight from Detroit.
The change starts October 1st and continues until March 1st.
Makes a lot of sense.
“We don’t really understand it,” says Lynn Dalton, a travel consultant at Holiday Travel. “It seems like most of the flights have been full. We’re just doing our best to reschedule everybody.”
Duane Duray, Sawyer’s airport manager, says the official reason for the change is “fleet adjustment.” Meaning, we suppose, the plane will be assigned elsewhere. Or not. It’s all kind of murky.
The good news? Duray says SkyWest has hinted that they might add another flight come December, though that’s by no means certain. “That’s the plan but it could be changed,” says Duray. “It could be changed next week.”
Just what airline passengers want to hear.
In the meantime, SkyWest is switching its afternoon flight to Minneapolis to the morning, instead–7:40 am.
Whatever. Duran insists that the airport management has a good relationship with SkyWest. They talk and they listen.
That’s good to hear. Now if the airline just had a good relationship with its irate, confused passengers, everything would be hunky-dory.
JOHNNY DOGS, THE famed Munising diner that’s so pleasing to our palate but murder on our belt size, will be moving in the next few months.
But just three blocks away, to Superior Street downtown. Into a vacated, former Chinese restaurant.
John Flanders and his crew have already started the demolition and renovation. He’s hoping to open there in December, or by January at the latest.
It’ll be a bigger venue, totally enclosed, with an outside deck. Same foods–gourmet hot dogs, sandwiches, the obscenely delicious and fattening “piggy fries”, along with 100 other menu items. And maybe, Flanders hopes, they might even serve a special Johnny Dogs brew.
Why the move? Well, he’s had a contentious relationship with his current landlord. And the opening of German restaurant this summer right next door to Johnny Dogs didn’t please him, either.
It was time for the move.
And what about rumors that he wants to expand to Marquette? Yep, he still does, but he hasn’t found quite the right location yet. He says he was talking about opening up a restaurant at Marquette Mountain if ownership of the mountain changed, but it appears that the deal to purchase the ski hill has fallen through, at least for now.
So Marquette fans will have to continue to take that 40 mile journey to Munising if they want to satisfy their craving for “piggy fries.”
GOOD NEWS FOR Marquette’s hockey players.
Superior Hockey, the little hockey shop at Lakeview Arena, has moved into a bigger space in the arena. It’s not so little anymore.
Double the space, triple the inventory, with more coming in every week.
The new shop was formerly office space but walls were busted out over the last couple of months to allow for the transformation. It opened last weekend.
Still seems strange that in a sports-loving town, we don’t have more sports equipment stores. Perani’s Hockey World closed down, so did MC Sports and Dunham’s Sports. Doesn’t make sense.
Seems like somebody could step into the vacuum here and make a little a money.
WE’RE HEARING RUMBLINGS of a possible merger–or at least a collaboration–between two competing youth soccer leagues in Marquette.
It’s about time.
Superiorland Soccer Association and Power Soccer Academy have been coexisting uneasily for several years now. SSA’s Travel Team (150 players) and PSA(100 players) have been competing for the same boys and girls.
“We’ve had some productive meetings,” says Randy Byma, the director of the SSA Travel Team. “I’m hoping we can work things out. We shouldn’t be competing against each other. We should be working together.”
A couple of key differences between the groups: 1) PSA’s fees are much higher–$1000 or so a year per player while SSA is closer to $400. 2) PSA is a for-profit league, but most important, it has a fully certified professional coach in Sasa Kostic, who’s coached and played in Europe and South America, as well as the U.S.
SSA’s coaches, on the other hand, are parents. Volunteers.
Could SSA’s players get better, more intensive coaching under Kostic? Probably, although you certainly don’t want to diminish the skills and the enthusiasm of SSA’s volunteer coaches.
Kostic and Byma have had two meetings so far. Byma says what’s most important to him is getting the fees down to an acceptable level, something well under $1000.
It seems doable.
Next, according to Byma, is a meeting between him and Norm Power, the founder of PSA.
One more thing. And this is exciting. Kostic says there is a local investor who’s interested in building an indoor soccer (and other sports) facility in the Marquette area. It’s a matter of finding the right location, and making the numbers work.
If it gets built, it would be a huge step forward for youth soccer here because, well…it’s kinda tough playing the game five months a year under a blanket of snow with temperatures in the teens.
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