North Country Trail Association


The North Country Trail community is gathering for 2024 Celebration from August 21-25 in St. Ignace, Michigan to learn new skills, become inspired, and of course, hike!

Register Now


The North Country Trail Association works with one or a few local Chapters to host Celebration in a different location each year. This is a multi-day event that offers opportunities to explore the North Country National Scenic Trail in unique locations. Celebration allows you to network with trail enthusiasts from North Dakota to Vermont and beyond, attend skills workshops and volunteer training, and participate in engaging evening presentations. Together, let’s celebrate everything that makes our Trail Community special.


It’s important to note that everything listed on this schedule may not be available at the time you register. You will see what is available during your registration process.

There may be hikes or workshops added to accommodate more guests. Any additions or changes will be reflected here ASAP. If you have already registered and selected hikes but want to change them or see what has been added: First, open the confirmation email you received from GTR Event Technology after registering for the event. Scroll toward the bottom and you should see a blue link that reads “change/edit your registration.” Selecting this will allow you back into your registration to make changes. You will only be able to view and select hikes with open spots.


View this PDF version of 2024 Celebration Frequently Asked Questions. Please double check this before traveling to the event, in case of additions or changes. Any updates will be reflected here ASAP.

Travel + Lodging

There are a variety of accommodations in the area, including the following recommendations. (You are not limited to these options.)

  • Straits State Park
  • Baymont Inn & Suites
    • Receive a 20% discount on your stay when you call the local number at 906-643-8411 and reference group code NCTA.
  • Holiday Inn Express
    • As of July 1, 20 rooms have been set aside for Celebration attendees to book and stay in between August 20-25. Book by calling 906-643-0200 then selecting Option 2. Mention group code NCT for a discounted rate.
  • Bayside Inn Motel (newly renovated!)
    • Select Book Now and enter the promo code NCTA to receive 20% off your stay.
  • Colonial House Inn (bed and breakfast)
Keynote Speaker

Stacy Bare is a husband and father, and loves playing outside, whether its biking, hiking, paddling, or skiing. He would really like to surf. He is currently the Executive Director of Friends of Grand Rapids Parks in Michigan. He served in the Army, was stationed in Germany, and spent time in Bosnia, Iraq, Angola, and Abkhazia. Two of those four countries he served in as an Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) tech. He has climbed in Angola, led the first recorded expedition to ski the tallest mountain in Iraq, and has skied in Kyrgyzstan, Japan, and Afghanistan. He has made some films, won some awards, done some research on the power of the outdoors, figure skated in elementary school, and written for a few outdoorsy publications. He is now most committed to ensuring everyone in Grand Rapids has access to the transformative power of nature through increasing the relevancy of parks, building more trails, planting more trees, and improving the health of urban forests. He has a Bachelors in Philosophy from the University of Mississippi, and a Masters in City Planning / Urban Design from the University of Pennsylvania.

Local Attractions

Did you know that St. Ignace and Mackinaw City are official NCTA Trail Towns?

  • Soo Locks in Sault Ste. Marie
  • “Narnia Trail” east of Cedarville by Bush Bay
  • Horseshoe Bay Wilderness / Foley Creek
  • Headlands International Dark Sky Park
  • Mackinaw Historical Society Heritage Village
  • Fort Michilimackinac
  • Castle Rock
  • The Mystery Spot
  • The Deer Ranch
  • Garlyn Zoo
  • Oswalds Bear Ranch
  • Iroquois Point Lighthouse
  • Whitefish Point Lighthouse / Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum
  • Mill Creek State Park
  • Gros Cap Trail at St. Ignace USFS Ranger Station
  • St. Ignace Historical Walking Tour
  • Round Island Preserve near Brimley
  • Go swimming or relax on the beach at the dunes on US-2
  • Valley Camp Museum Ship
  • Icebreaker Mackinaw Maritime Museum
  • Mackinac Island Scavenger Hunt. Visit the island and get pictures of the following. Unique perspectives get more points! Post the photos to Facebook or Instagram, and tag @northcountrytrail, #northcountrytrail, and #nctacelebration.
    • Arch Rock
    • A person dressed as a 1812 British Soldier
    • Skull Cave
    • The Crack in the Island
    • Fort Holms
    • Sugar Loaf
    • Lookout Point
    • Bark Chapel
    • The Horse Drawn Hearse in the Surrey Hill Carriage Museum
    • The “Somewhere In Time” Gazebo Creative

2024 Sponsors

Athletic Brewing
Bay Pharmacy
Buckhorn of Trout Lake
Castle Rock
Cedars of Mackinac
Central Savings Bank
Chippewa County Historical Society
Fernelius Hyundai
First National Bank of St. Ignace
Frank’s Place
Gold Mine Jewelry
Kiwanis Club of St. Ignace
Mackinac Properties Real Estate
Mackinac Straits Health System
Marc’s Double Oven
Northern Confections
Original Murdick’s Fudge
Pickford Building Center
Sault Printing Company, Inc.
Super 8, St. Ignace
Superior Coffee Roasting Company
Tahquamenon Falls Brewery & Pub
U.P. State Credit Union

If you’d like to consider sponsorship, please view the NCTA Sponsor Deck to browse the levels and opportunities.


Header photo by Mary Mudge