2004-12-11 / Letters

Families Enjoy Island Park, Trail

To the Editor:

This summer, about 170 members of the Murray family got together on Mackinac Island for the family reunion we hold here every five years. One of the highlights of our reunion was the day we spent up at Great Turtle Park.

For those of us who have been visiting Mackinac every year, it is so great to see the way this area has been transformed from an undiscovered spot in the middle of the island into a great recreational resource for everyone to use. Our family had such a great time playing kickball, climbing on the jungle gyms, swinging on the swings, playing in the sand, enjoying a great picnic under the trees, and generally appreciating the wonderful early August weather.

We want to extend our thanks to the Mackinac Island Recreational Department for taking the initiative to create the Great Turtle Park, and to the Mackinac Island State Park for providing the land. And we would also like to say a special thanks to MIRD for creating “Lorettas Trail,” which encircles the Park.

Loretta Dennany was my grandmother and the matriarch of the Murray/Dennany family for many years. Most everyone who lives on the Island knew Loretta. Her house at the foot of Mission Hill was a gathering place for friends and family for decades, and her front porch is a reminder that, for all the tourists who visit, Mackinac is still a small town, and the people who live here love nothing more than to get together and visit. She was so full of life, full of passion for her family and the noble causes that she embraced, and full of love for Mackinac. If there ever was a strong advocate for the good works of MIRD, it was Loretta.

Our family has spent many years at Mackinac, enjoying the beautiful trails that wind through the Island. We realize that it is very rare to have a trail named after an individual, and we just want to say thank you. Thank you to Barb Fisher, Brenda Bunker, Leanne Brodeur, Melinda Porter, Phil Porter, Rollie McCready, and Lori Strom, who, without their vision and drive, Great Turtle Park would never have happened. Thank you MIRD, for naming the trail after Loretta. Thank you to the countless number of volunteers who worked so hard to clear the trail. And thank you for giving us Great Turtle Park.

Elizabeth Fox

Nashville, Tennessee

Return to top