The invites the public to hear the amazing story of Loreen Niewenhuis who walked around Lake Michigan in 2009.
Join us June 29 from 7 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. to meet the Michigander and author who will discuss her book, A 1,000-MILE WALK ON THE BEACH: One Woman's Trek of the Perimeter of Lake Michigan.
When Loreen Niewenhuis turned 45-years-old, she felt compelled to break out of her day-to-day routine and looked for a big challenge. She decided to walk all the way around her favorite place: Lake Michigan. “Instead of having a mid-life crisis,” Niewenhuis said, “I had a mid-life adventure!”
It took Niewenhuis 64 days of determined walking, which averaged 16 miles a day. In the end, she walked 1,000 miles. “I encircled the lake with my footsteps, and recorded it in my muscles and bones,” Niewenhuis says.
On her walk, she encountered rain, snow, gale-force winds and calm sunny days. She had to navigate obstacles ranging from limestone cliffs to deep rivers, steel refineries and nuclear and coal-fired power plants. The journey was filled with many challenges that she had to overcome.
Niewenhuis has been constantly drawn to the shores of Lake Michigan, the fifth largest lake in the world. In her book, she offers witness to both the natural beauty of much of Lake Michigan's lakeshore and a concern for the lake’s health as she explored the long and troubling pattern of ecological abuses and environmental challenges.
Through her trek, Niewenhuis discovered that Lake Michigan, like all great places, is not a uniform experience, but is different each day. Niewenhuis takes us along on the hike from the urban blight of South Chicago, to the popular state parks with grand dunes and sweeping vistas, to small towns and lakefront cottages, to the isolated wild stretches where few people go.
Niewenhuis explores how vital the Great Lakes water system is to the entire country as these five lakes contain 90% of the fresh surface water in the nation. Niewenhuis conveys a sense of the magnitude and diversity of the lake she loves, a place elemental to the four Midwestern states that form its shores. From a ground-level perspective, the book explores the natural and human history of Lake Michigan and raises important questions about preserving our wild places and protecting fragile ecosystems.
A 1,000-MILE WALK ON THE BEACH: One Woman's Trek of the Perimeter of Lake Michigan will offer inspiration to anyone interested in Great Lakes environmental issues (from invasive species to water quality to tourism) and to anyone interested in what it means to take a really long walk and look closely at oneself and one’s place.
The Brighton District Library is located at 100 Library Drive, Brighton, MI. For more information, visit our website at www.brightonlibrary.info or call 810-229-6571.