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The past ten months have gone by like the blink of an eye. When I began working for the Door County Visitor's Bureau as their Motorcycle Blogger I knew that it wouldn't seem like a "job" at all; and it hasn't! How could combining two of my favorite things , Door County and motorcycles, and blogging about them seem like work? I have loved every minute of the past year riding to my favorite places, and discovering new out of the way spots that Jane and I will undoubtedly visit over and over again. I looked at these places with a new set of eyes. I wondered how I could possibly share my love of this beautiful county with those of you who have a passion to ride. What I learned is that it really isn't hard at all. It comes down to one thing: live your life with intention, follow your heart and take in the beauty of our county as if it is the last place you'll ever be! I have shared many places with you during the past several months and this will be my last blog. I have lived in Door County for 24 years and have discovered numerous places that I would love each of you to visit. However, if your time is limited and you plan on cruising through the county, come along with me as I offer my Door County "Top 5". I hope you get a chance to visit the following places as I consider them unique, each in their own way. So, in no particular order here are my "Top Five".... 1. Wisconsin Motorcycle Memorial. The Memorial is located on 4758 Mathey Road five miles north of Sturgeon Bay. I have written about this Memorial on several occasions and it is worth seeing many times over. It is a must see for bikers who share the love of the open road. The arched entrance leads you to the "Walkway of Remembrance", a path paved with tribute stones. The walkway is made up of over 1,000 9"x12" tribute stones commemorating those who have passed. What a wonderful, peaceful place to come together with your thoughts. 2. Newport State Park. Newport State Park is the place to go if you desire a location "off the beaten path" . The park is a hidden gem because it has the least amount of visitors yet boasts some of the most tranquil views and hiking trails in northern Door County. The hiking lends itself to any ability level and takes you to a "hidden" lake that many people don't know about: Europe Lake. For those of you who are really adventurous, remote camping is available in the park. Carrying your gear on your back (motor vehicles are prohibited) and no available water or electricity make this a spot for true campers! Newport State Park is located north of Ellison Bay on Door County's Lake Michigan side. 3. Cave Point County Park. Cave Point is the first county park that we discovered when we moved here so many years ago. It was a cold winter night and I was needing a ride to relieve the stress of a long day. When I got to Cave Point it was dark and all I could hear was the crashing of waves and the reflection of a full moon over the water. It was breathtaking. Fast forward a few days later and when I went to the park during the day it was just as wonderful. With its underwater caves and wave-worn cliffs, Cave Point is one of the most photographed places in Door County. It is a popular venue for graduation pictures, family photo shoots and weddings. 4. Peninsula State Park. Located in northern Door County, Peninsula State Park is a beautiful park which boasts miles of Door County shoreline. It has a little bit of everything and is one of the most visited parks in the Midwest. The park is full of camping sites, hiking trails, cross country ski trails, beaches, nature centers, lookout points, lookout towers, an outdoor theater (American Folklore Theater), and the Eagle Bluff Lighthouse,....something for everyone! Peninsula Golf Course, which is one of the best public courses in the county, is part of the park, as well. With over 1,000,000 annual visitors it is no wonder that Peninsula State Park is one of the most popular parks in the Midwest. 5. Ellison Bluff County Park. If you want the most spectacular view in Door County, for me, Ellison Bluff is it. This is the epitome of a hidden gem! The park is a bit off the beaten path, but well worth the ride. Just before you enter Ellison Bay on Hwy 42, there will be a sign for the park. Of all the places I have travelled, this view is the most beautiful and, in every sense of the word, amazing! Truth be told, there are a few amazing spots that I have found and purposely not mentioned. Some I have truly ventured off the "beaten path" to find, and they remain my own little piece of Door County. I hope you find a few of your own and come to know the real reason so many of us call this county home. This is where we live, this is our home, this is Door County!
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