Straight from a local’s noggin, these nuggets of knowledge might help you curate a new experience the next time you’re in Traverse City. First timer? In that case, be sure to hit up Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Cherry Republic and downtown Front Street. But if you’re here for round two, three or 12 (!!), read on, you serial traveler, you! 

One of the perils of being a “foodie town” is that the restaurant scene can sometimes change quite often. Even in a small resort community like Traverse City, it can seem like there’s a new eatery opening (or sometimes, closing) every week. It’s exciting, but also unsettling – especially for returning vacationers who want to know what happened to last year’s favorite bistro. 

Spring in northern Michigan may be slow to arrive this year, but that doesn't stop us from thinking about the colorful times ahead of us at the Sleeping Bear Dunes. The first signs of the season appear at the park when the snow melts and the dominant colors fall into an earthy palette. Think beige, taupe, brown and steely blue. The landscape itself hasn’t yet awoken, but Lake Michigan’s views sparkle regardless.

We’re standing in the middle of a closed street, at times jumping up and down a bit, shifting our weight from side to side, and holding our crossed arms to our chests to warm up on this brisk late May morning. We’re checking and re-checking our watches, adjusting earphones and iPhones, chatting with one another, or maybe just staring straight ahead, alone in our thoughts as we wait for the final countdown to the race start. The excitement and nervous-tension is palpable.

Travel writer Kim Schneider's book, “100 Things to do in Traverse City Before you Die” is being launched this week in local bookstores, kicking off with a Saturday (3-6 p.m.) launch party at Brilliant Books. Since the book highlights the Traverse City region we had a few questions for Kim.