Play: Strap on your snowshoes and head for Avalanche Mountain Preserve. You'll find 300-plus acres of sugar snow-sprinkled woods, a four-season disc golf course, the sweetest sledding hill we know, plus an old-fashioned outdoor ice rink. Borrow discs at the Boyne Area Chamber of Commerce (231-582-6222, boynechamber.com); rent skates at the rink's warming hut.
Stay: After you sip a nightcap in the Wolverine Dilworth Inn's darkly distinguished Library Bar and Grill, don one for your long winter's nap in one of the historic hotel's Victorian-style rooms ($89+, 231-582-7388, wolverinedilworthinn.com). Condo suites and stellar sunsets over Lake Charlevoix are standard at Water Street Inn ($139+, 800-456-4313, boynewaterstreetinn.com).
Eat: The grilled Inflector Gadget – Genoa salami, smoked ham, capicolla, provolone, tomato, lettuce, pepperoncinis, onion and hoagie dressing on rustic Italian bread – is the Godfather of sandwich heaven, aka Lake Street Market (231-582-4450, lakestreetmarket.com).Inside the red railroad car-turned-restaurant, Lester's (231-582-4500), you can cozy up to a fire, scarf a railroad tie-sized slab of finger lickin'-fabulous ribs and imbibe around the world – more than 200 beers are imported here from exotic locales like Sri Lanka, Poland, Ireland and, uh … Milwaukee.
Insider Tip: February kicks off Boyne's "Buy Into Boyne" campaign – for every $20 you spend at participating downtown shops, you get the chance to win $5,000 cash and other prizes, to be awarded at Boyne's famous annual Mushroom Festival in May. Until then, Fun Guy, trade your receipts for entries at the chamber of commerce and get ready to get rich.
Lynda Twardowski is travel editor at Traverse, Northern Michigan's Magazine. [email protected]
Note: This article was originally published in February 2008.