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We all know the legend of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, how a mother and her cubs fleeing a forest fire swam across Lake Michigan—but the cubs never made it, forming North and South Manitou islands while the mama bear waited on shore, eventually becoming a part of the dunes. But there’s much more to the story of Sleeping Bear Dunes. In this video, Sleeping Bear Dunes Visitors Bureau, with the help of the Empire Area Museum, a former National Park Service historian and a former park ranger, tells us about the Anishinaabe people who camped along the shores and the French explorers and fur trappers who came next. Historical film reels and photos show us the early years of tourism and an uncanny image of a grove of trees that look exactly like a sleeping bear. Hit play to see for yourself.

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