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TRAVERSE CITY, Mich — Michigan has made a name for itself as one of the premier craft brew states in the country, and considers itself the “Great Beer State”® with more than 200 breweries throughout two peninsulas, according to the Michigan Brewers Guild. What better way to partake of these fine beverages than from the deck of the Schooner Manitou, while sailing in the fresh waters of Grand Traverse Bay (and northern Lake Michigan, weather permitting).

tall ship manitou

The Traverse Tall Ship Company is offering a 4-Day Michigan Craft Beer Cruise (Sept. 15-19) with chef and craft beer aficionado Amy Sherman, who will serve as host and tasting guide—serving up hors d’oeuvres, followed by specifically designed food pairings with dinner. The cost is $769 per person and includes overnight accommodations aboard the tall ship, meals, beer education and plenty of time for relaxing.

After graduating from Aquinas College, Amy Sherman found her true calling in the kitchen. A 20-year restaurant veteran, she’s held every job possible, from ravioli runner, prep chef, book keeper, waitress, to manager, sous chef and pastry chef.  She has taught cooking classes throughout West Michigan, runs a catering company called Two Chicks and an Oven, and with her husband runs the local food company, Farmlink. As the host of the Great American Brew Trail, she drank her way across Michigan, one pint at a time. She currently hosts a podcast called “Behind the Mitten” with MLive’s John Gonzalez and was recently added to the Mlive “Best Of…” Team. She also leads culinary adventures here in the states and Europe.  Her main job, however, is being mom to three ruffians in Grand Rapids.

As one of the largest sailing ships on the Great Lakes, the Manitou is a replica of an 1800s “coasting” cargo schooner. A traditional two-masted, gaff rigged, topsail schooner, Manitou measures 114 feet in length with more than 3000 square feet of sail.

There is plenty of space for sitting and moving around the decks while under sail. While aboard the Manitou, passengers are free to leave the sailing to the experienced crew or lend a hand and learn the arts of the sailor. An excursion aboard the Manitou allows you to remove yourself from the trappings of modern life: no TV, phone (cell phones are discouraged), internet, email and definitely, no itinerary.

Trips are limited to 22 individuals, with accommodations provided in 11 double-bunk cabins. Fare includes lodging, all meals and sailing activities.

To make reservations for the 4-Day Michigan Craft Beer Cruise, call toll free 800-678-0383 or order tickets online. Gift certificates are also available. For additional information about the Manitou, including its corporate charters, log on to www.TallShipSailing.com.

Traverse Tall Ship Company is located at 13258 S.W. Bay Shore Drive (M22) in Traverse City and shares a dock with the fleet from the Maritime Heritage Alliance, creating a unique nautical experience for the area.

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