Environment Picture

Outdoors: Michigan Wonders Quiz

How well do you know Michigan’s coolest and most popular attractions, offbeat quirks and interesting wonders? Test yourself with these odd Michigan facts.
1. We have numerous Paul Bunyan statues in Michigan, including ones in Ossineke and 40 miles north of there in Oscoda. Which ONE of the following is NOT TRUE about Paul Bunyan’s Michigan statues?
a. The Oscoda statue was quarantined from 1988-1990 because of peeling lead paint that had to be removed by specialized contractors at a cost of $25,000. Almost half that money was raised through sales of Bunyan-themed baked goods.
b. The first recorded story about Paul Bunyan was published in the Oscoda Press in 1906, which is why the Michigan Legislature named the town the “official home” of Paul Bunyan.
c. Someone shot the testicles off of Paul’s “Babe the Blue Ox” companion statue in Ossineke in the 1950s. They were never replaced.
d. A Bunyan statue that was built in the 1960s in Gaylord was made from Kaiser Automobile hoods and fenders.

2. More than 100 miles of underground tunnels snake below the City of Detroit. It’s part of a mining operation for what?
a. Gravel
b. Lithium
c. Salt
d. Limestone

3. Lake Michigan’s Sleeping Bear Dunes is regularly named one of the nation’s top natural wonders. The Ojibwe legend of Sleeping Bear holds that the great dunes are a mother bear mourning her two cubs who didn’t make it to shore while swimming across Lake Michigan. The cubs in the legend are what?
a. Two sinkholes—260 and 310 feet deep—immediately offshore
b. The Door and Garden peninsulas across the lake
c. North and South Manitou islands offshore from the dunes d. Fossilized bear cub remains, recovered at the base of the dunes and displayed at the dunes museum

4. Sanilac Petroglyphs Historic State Park boasts Michigan’s only known rock carvings attributable to Native American Indians. Dating back between 300 and 1,000 years, the carvings include all of the images below, with the exception of which ONE:
a. Birds
b. Bow-wielding men
c. A mythical underwater panther
d. A spineless wolverine

5. Among the historic but macabre attractions at The Henry Ford in Dearborn is the chair in which President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated. Other exhibits include all of the following except which ONE:
a. The Oscar Mayer Wienermobile
b. Scale model Ford Nucleon, which was to be powered by an in-car nuclear reactor
c. The Kitty Hawk plane, flown by the Wright Brothers in the first transcontinental crossing
d. The limousine in which President John F. Kennedy was assassinated

6. The Mighty Mackinac Bridge is a state icon and one of our most visible symbols, opening to traffic in 1957. Which TWO of the following statements about the bridge are NOT TRUE?
a. The bridge can sway up to 35 feet from side to side during heavy winds.
b. A young Matty Moroun filed an unsuccessful lawsuit to stop the bridge in 1955.
c. On its first year anniversary, beauty queens from every Michigan county crossed the bridge in white Oldsmobiles.
d. During the annual Labor Day Bridge Walk in 2003, then Gov. Jennifer Granholm angered some traditionalists by breaking tradition and riding a bicycle—not walking—across the span.

7. Michigan’s state stone is the Petoskey, only found in Michigan. Which TWO of the following statements are accurate?
a. Petoskeys are fossilized coral that lived in the warm shallow seas that covered Michigan 350 million years ago.
b. Petoskey stones were responsible for several skirmishes during the War of 1812, because the British appetite for Petoskey-studded ornaments and decorations made Northern Michigan a valuable territory.
c. Laws limiting the annual harvest of Petoskey stones passed by the Michigan Legislature in the 1930s were nullified as unconstitutional by the U.S. Court of Appeals.
d. Metaphysical qualities ascribed to the Petoskey include its ability to stimulate the third-eye chakra and heighten psychic awareness.

8. In the early 1800s, Congress gave Michigan its glorious Upper Peninsula, ticking off Wisconsin (eat it, Cheeseheads!). What did Michigan give up during the Congressional horse trading in exchange for the U.P.?
a. Toledo
b. Its exemption from a federal logging and trapping tax
c. Control of commerce on most of the Great Lakes waters d. The right to have a winning pro football franchise

9. The southern Michigan city of Colon is known internationally for what?

a. Its most unfortunate name
b. Its standing as the world’s largest manufacturer of magic supplies
c. The reputed healing properties of its well water
d. The world’s largest annual cross-stitch festival

10. The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor is one of the state’s fine higher education institutions. But in the early 1800s it was located in Detroit and had a different name. What was it?
a. The Leaders and the Best
b. Nothrastremadeaus
c. Runtilliouctious
d. Cathelepistemian

Answers: 1 – A; 2 – C (salt); 3 – C (the islands); 4 – D; 5 – C; 6 – B and D; 7 – A and D; 8 – A (Toledo); 9 – B (magic); 10 – D (Cathelepistemian. As the Chicago Tribune reported, “no one knows what it means”)
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