I grew up in Owosso (north east of Lansing), and coming to Lansing was always such a treat when I was younger. To a little girl who was a shopper in training, restaurant critic in training, and also an events coordinator in training, coming to Lansing was kind of magical. The big city held so many fun adventures.

Getting dressed up for shopping would mean that we would be shopping downtown Lansing at Knapps, and then that would be followed by a stop at the Peanut Shop for warm Spanish Peanuts. Downtown East Lansing meant shopping at Jacobsons and a nice fancy lunch in their restaurant.

If it was your birthday, the best way to spend it was on the Alley Cat and Mister Mayor TV show that was shot by Channel 6.  Alley Cat, her friend the dog Pansy and Mister Mayor played by the wonderful Howard Lancour. If you were there celebrating your birthday you would get to leave with a HUGE Slow Poke sucker.  For the Moms, it was the TV show Copper Kettle with Martha Dixon as the host. That was also filmed in front of a live audience at the TV 6 studios. Fun fact: I still use Martha Dixon's recipe for fudge and make it every Christmas....it is delicious.

Growing up you always found the best events were held at the Lansing Civic Center.  When the Circus would come to town, which was by train if I remember correctly, they would parade down to the Civic Center. It was amazing to see all the animals and circus folk putting on that magnificent parade. I seem to remember hearing about an elephant that broke free of the parade and went rogue. Poor thing ended up being shot.

On a brighter note, many of us have fond memories of watching the Rocky Horror Picture Show at the Spartan Tri-plex. It was on every every weekend. "Damn it Janet!" (If you saw the movie, you know what that is).

Winters used to be so much fun. We would spend our days skiing down the Lansing Ski Slope. It was such a sad day when that closed and was replaced by condos. YES, Lansing had a ski hill, and I guess I am still a bit sad that it was closed down. We also had outdoor ice skating; I used to skate at the rink on Washington Street.

Even though I didn't grow up in Lansing, I was lucky that Owosso was only a short drive away from Lansing and all that it had to offer.