Dianna Stampfler, Promote Michigan
Since 1997, Dianna Stampfler has been presenting lively and upbeat programs about the area’s historic lighthouses, ghost towns, islands and other unique destinations and activities in her home state of Michigan. Dianna is a professional speaker, with a degree in communications from Western Michigan University and 23 years experience in radio broadcasting and public speaking. An established freelance writer, Dianna is a regular contributor to Michigan Blue Magazine and Grand Rapids Family Magazine, and has also been published in Michigan Living, Michigan Travel Ideas, Lake Michigan Circle Tour & Lighthouse Guide, Country Lines, Taster’s Guild International and Grand Rapids Magazine. Over the years, she has held memberships in the Great Lake Lighthouse Keepers Association and Historical Society of Michigan.
DETAILS: These programs, tailored at 30-90 minutes each, are ideal for museums, libraries, schools, historical societies, churches, life-long learning programs & senior centers and women’s groups.
PRESENTATION COST: $250 per program
EXPENSE REIMBURSEMENT: 50 cents per mile, round trip from Plainwell, Mich.
*Additional expenses, such as a meal per diem and/or accommodations, may be required for destinations more than 150 miles from Plainwell or for those starting before 9am or after 8pm.
EQUIPMENT REQUIREMENT: LCD projector (Presentations are presented on Microsoft PowerPoint)
Ladies of the Lights (Audience Favorite): They were women before their time, taking on the romantic, yet dangerous and physically demanding job of tending to the beacons that protected the shoreline. In all, some 40 women have been identified who excelled in this profession over the years — dating back as early as the 1840s and as recent as present day. Nearly 70 images of keepers, their families and their lights make up this presentation. The program includes readings from newspapers and autobiographies, as well as handouts including the list of featured ladies and additional reading references for attendees.
Michigan’s Ghostly Beacons (Audience Favorite): What is it about lighthouses that attract ghostly spirits? Maybe it’s simply a passion that will not go away. Lighthouse keepers were known to be extremely dedicated to their profession and it seems that many were never able to give it up — even after death. Nearly two dozen lights in Michigan are rumored to be haunted. From the smell of cigar smoke at Seul Choix Point Light to the mysterious housekeeping at White River Light Station and the antics at Waugoshance Shoal, these stories will entertain all ages.
Michigan Tidbits & Trivia: Where will you find the World’s Largest Weathervane? What famous actor hails from Manistee County? In what Michigan city is Jiffy Mix made? How old is the State of Michigan? The answers to these — and dozens of other — questions will be revealed during this interactive program: “Michigan: Tidbits & Trivia.” This family program promises to be entertaining, as well as educational.
Bridge to Michigan’s Past: There are more than a dozen covered bridges throughout the state of Michigan, three within just a short drive of each other. Originally covered to protect the wooden floors from the elements, today they are one of the most photographed structures in the state. While some of these bridges remain open to automobile traffic, some limit their access to those traveling via foot or bicycle. Of course, you can’t talk Michigan bridges without referencing the most famous: The Mackinac Bridge and the Blue Water Bridge. Other uniquely significant bridges around the state will also be showcased.
Michigan Ghost Towns: Hundreds of 'ghost towns' dot Michigan's landscape throughout both the Lower and Upper Peninsulas. Some even still appear on state highway maps. Originally centered in logging, farming, and mining areas, these towns often faded into history when the natural resources were depleted. Only a handful remain standing, silent and abandoned, as a reminder of what once was. Settle in for an historic tour through Michigan’s past as you visit the ghost towns of the Great Lakes State.
Islands of Michigan: It’s no wonder that the Great Lakes State is graced with hundreds of islands, just waiting to be explored. From the rustic Isle Royale and Les Cheneaux Islands, to the North and South Manitou Islands (which once housed established communities) to the most noted Beaver Island (home of Michigan’s only King) High Island (former home to the House of David), Drummond Island and Mackinac Islands (where automobiles are not allowed), these islands are gems in Michigan’s history.
Michigan’s Historic One Room Schoolhouses: Nearly lost to time to consolidation of districts, Michigan’s thousands of one room schools once dotted the landscape every few miles. Fortunately, many have been preserved and have found a new place in historical villages. Some have been converted into homes, antique shops, art galleries and museums. A small number are still in use. Take an educational and photographic trip back in time and see those that have been lost -- and found.
Michigan’s Winter Playground: Michigan is a giant snow-filled playground when Mother Nature rolls out the winter carpet. Miles of trails available for snowmobiling and cross country skiing, dozens of slopes for downhill skiing and acres of wooded areas for snowshoeing are just waiting to be explored. There’s also plenty of opportunity for more extreme activities such as luging, rafting, ice sailing, camping and dogsledding. Those looking for less actual activity will enjoy one of many winter food offerings, including the Gourmet Glide, Zhivago Night, Mountaintop Dinners and Elk Viewing Carriage Rides. Don’t forget about the festivals such as Tip Up Town, Suds-n-Snow, Toast the Passion, Motown Winter Blast and the Women’s Winter Tour. Learn about all the exciting things just waiting to be experienced in Michigan during the winter season
TO BOOK A PROGRAM, CONTACT:
Dianna Stampfler, Promote Michigan