The Top of The Lake Snowmobile Museum, Naubinway, Michigan
Antique & Vintage Snowmobiles
"Where the history of snowmobiling comes to life."
Welcome to the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum! We are a non-profit, 501c3, antique, vintage and classic snowmobile museum in Naubinway, Michigan. We are located on the north side of US 2 in downtown Naubinway. Our museum, fundraisers and events provide one-of-a-kind experience for people of all ages, with 185+ displays to enjoy. We invite you to visit our museum, join us for our events and explore our wonderful town of Naubinway, Michigan in the beautiful Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Link to us: www.snowmobilemuseum.com and our Museum video: https://youtu.be/Qet4hZnwmoI
New Video - Diablo 50 Mile Ride
We have now joined the "facebook" crowd. You can keep udated on the very latest news there, thanks to Karen Jarema, Marilyn Vallier, Lori Vallier & Greg Busch. You'll find us under Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum. Join in on the posts!
Latest News Flash!
Sept 20, 2108 The Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum has been awarded a grant of $12,500 for Operational Support from the State of Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs (MCACA) and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA – ART WORKS). The grant was awarded through the MCACA peer review process and was one of 561 applications to compete for MCACA fiscal year 2019 funding.
The grant is for Operational Support for costs associated with the operation of the museum. It requires a 1:1 match and will help the museum to leverage the $12,500.00 of support from its annual income and the many donations received from supporters. In particular the museum has received grants from the Graymont Community Economic Development Fund and the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. It has also received significant donations from the Antique Snowmobile Club of America, The Midwest Vintage Snowmobile Shows, Inc., many snowmobile clubs, several recreational and snowmobile shows, the museum’s internal $1,000.00 Challenge and many museum members.
The grant funds will be applied to museum operating costs. Applicable costs include internal operations, marketing, travel to shows within the state of Michigan and cost of employees.
The MCACA peer review process allows for each grant applicant to be competitively considered by a panel of in-state and out-of-state arts and culture professionals. This ensures the taxpayers, who support this project through legislative appropriations, and all other visitors or residents in Michigan will have access to the highest quality arts and cultural experiences.
A complete list of grant awards around the state is available by contacting MCACA at (517) 241-4011, or by visiting the MCACA website at www.michigan.gov/arts.
The Museum's next big event will be the Snowmobile the Mighty Mac Bridge Crossing on Dec 15, 2018. Snowmobiles 25 years & older will be able to cross the Mackinac Bridge in St. Ignace, MI! Wheel kits, with at least 2" wheels, and no studs or cleats are required. Lunch will be provided at the Little Bear East Arena following the crossing. For more information, go to the Featured Events page on this website, call 906-477-6298 or email email@example.com. Registration will take place online with the St. Ignace Visitors Bureau.
The 26th Top of the Lake Show & Ride, Feb 16 & 17, 2018, featured the 50th year for the Plaisted Expedition and was a huge success! 165 machines went on the Friday morning ride and 60 went on the Night Ride & Bonfire. 170 machines were on display for the Show on Sat. and the Banquet/Drawings/Auction was well attended. See the Featured Events page for more details. We want to thank Walt Pederson's son and 2 daughters for coming to our show to be the speakers at the Banquet. Walt was the mechanic/chaplain on the trip to the North Pole and they had an outstanding presentation about the 1968 Plaisted Expedition!
On Dec 16, 2017 the Museum will be sponsoring the 2nd Snowmobile the Mighty Mac! To participate, you need to have a snowmobile 25 years or older with at least 2" wide wheels, and no studs or cleats. Contact the St. Ignace Visitor's Bureau to register and pay the $35 fee. The crossing begins at 11:00 am and lunch after the crossing will be at the Mackinac Grille in downtown St. Ignace. More information is also available by calling the Museum (906-477-6298).
On Sept 20, 2017 the Museum was notified that we have been awarded $11,250 for an Operational Support Grant funded by the MCACA (Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs) and NEA (National Endowment for the Arts)!
Mark the date - Dec 16. 2017 will be our 2nd annual Snowmobile the Mighty Mac Bridge Crossing! Here is the link to register with the St. Ignace Visitor's Bureau; https://visitorsbureau.regfox.com/antique-snowmobile-bridge-crossing. For more information, call the Museum, 906-477-6298.
On Sept 16, 2017 the 11th Annual Swap Meet & Auction will be going on behind the museum. We also will be dedicating the new Bud Knapp/John McGuirk Library! This will happen at noon, and Bud's wife, Gerri, her son Jerry, and John McGuirk will be here for the dedication. All are welcome to join us!
The museum now has 2 added attractions - a Tom Cat kiddie ride for the smaller children and an Arctic Thunder arcade game for the older children (of all ages!). Quarters needed.
On Feb 14, 2017, 12 antique, rear-engine snowmobiles took off from the Museum on a 100 mile ride. It took 3 days to travel from Naubinway to Curtis, then Curtis to Newberry and then Newberry back to Naubinway. This was the second year for this excursion and again was successful and fun! Don Hamilton made a youtube video of the journey that you really need to see - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dNCsjmO32_M&feature=youtu.be
"Snowmobile the Mighty Mac" was a great success! 39 snowmobiles made the crossing and ready to do it again next year. As an update, the date for the next crossing will be Dec 16, 2017. Watch the museum facebook page for info as it gets closer, and the St. Ignace Visitors Bureau will have registration online.
Our very first "Snowmobile the Mighty Mac" ride across the Mackinac Bridge will be held on Sat. Dec 17, 2016. Your sled must be at least 25 years or older, have a legal registration or the Historic Registration, a wheel kit with at least 2" wide wheels, and no cleats or studs on the track. Call the St. Ignace Events Committee for registration and more details - 906-643-6950. Join us for this new great Bucket List event!
25th Naubinway Snowmobile Show & Ride - Feb 17 & 18, 2017. Check out the Featured Events page for details. Featured sled - Large track vehicles. 26 mile ride is Friday at 11:00 and the show is Sat. If the Ice Bridge to Mackinac Island is good, come with us across the ice to the Island from St. Ignace at noon on Sunday.
Aug, 2016. We just received the banner inventory from Victory Sign & Graphics. We have the small ones, 11" x 19" and a large variety of the 22" x 60" large banners. You will need to contact us to find out what we have available. We also will be taking them to shows that we travel to.
Our first show of the season will be Sept. 9 & 10 - the St. Ignace Tractor/Snowmobile Show at the Little Bear Arena in St. Ignace, MI. Call the museum for more info. Bring your snowmobile for a fun, indoor show in a beautiful part of Michigan. Each sled you bring will give you a chance to win a Mackinac Bridge Tower Tour!
June, 2016 - The new Bombardier Addition has begun! Check out the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum facebook page for pictures of the progress. We now have 17 people who have donated to the $1000 Challenge, which will help us accomplish this! Thank you!!
Top of the Lake Museum was gifted 33 snowmobiles from the J.A. Bombardier Museum in Valcourt, Quebec - March 21, 2016! The snowmobiles have arrived and 11 are in the museum. An addition is being planned for this summer, to house all 33 machines, plus a few more. We hope to have it completed by Christmas, 2016
Here is the link for the TV 9&10 News coverage of the Bombardier Museum sleds that we just had delivered to our museum - March 23, 2016: http://www.9and10news.com/story/31551159/mackinac-county-snowmobile-museum-accepts-donated-sleds-planning-expansion
Check out our museum facebook page for pictures and information about the addition of the 33 snowmobiles donated by the J.A. Bombardier Museum plus lots of other information happening at the museum.
Here is the link for the TV 6 news from Marquette, MI about the delivery:http://uppermichiganssource.com/news/local/snow-many-donated-sleds
Here is the link for the latest TV, "906 Outdoors-Discovering", show from Marquette, MI on Feb 22, 2106. http://www.906outdoors.com/906outdoors/videos/S184.html
We just received this from one of our great supporters - Roger & Karen Jarema:
WELCOME TO THE $1000 CHALLENGE! (update: Jan, 2017 we have 19 Challenge donations!)
This is Karen & Roger Jarema. We are members of the museum. When we heard that Bombardier had chosen THIS museum for a gift of 33 collectible sleds, we were very proud. What an honor to be receiving these sleds, some of which are very unique! We decided that this is truly something that we need to help out with! The museum is in need of funding for an addition for the wonderful gift of snowmobiles that Bombardier has generously decided to give to the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum!
Roger & I discussed it and we have decided to donate $1000 to the museum. There are many reasons for this decision. We are so grateful to ALL of the volunteers that have given of their time, talents and money for the museum, the museum is a 501c3 (which means that our donation will be tax deductible), we will now be lifetime members of the museum, our name will be added to the donor wall, etc.
We understand that the museum is going to be soliciting grants to help with this addition, but that all takes time. The museum is looking to fundraise $50,000 for this new venture which needs to start NOW!
We are challenging every Antique/Vintage sled owner, snowmobile enthusiasts, museum lovers and preservationists to help with this challenge.
If 49 other people (or groups of people) follow in our footsteps, then the addition would start and hopefully be completed by this fall. As the saying goes…it takes a village. So guess what…we need everyone out there to contact the museum with ANY donation. It doesn’t matter how large or how small. If 10 people each donate $100…there it is…another $1000! 100 people donate $10…guess what…$1000 was reached again!
So this is it…the first $1000 is on the table…who will throw the next snowball with a donation? Are YOU up for the challenge? If so, please call Marilyn at the museum (906- 477-6298). Your pledge can be given by check, money order, credit card or cash. So PLEASE join in and LET’S MAKE THIS HAPPEN!!
For the full story – go to the museum’s website (http://www.snowmobilemuseum.com) and check out the “Latest News Flash”
Donation Request for Museum Expansion 2016:
The Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum has just received a signed contract for the gifting of 33 rare and unique snowmobiles from the J. Armand Bombardier Museum in Valcourt, Quebec to the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum. The J. Armand Bombardier Museum is making changes to their museum and with those changes gifting away several snowmobiles that are not of the Ski-Doo brand.
It is a distinct honor to the membership of the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum and the many others that support it to have the offer of the gifting of the 33 rare and unique snowmobiles. The continued support has directly contributed to the growth and public knowledge of the museum. Over the years since its opening it has grown from a small museum to the current new building opened in October of 2013. The museum is not only a snowmobile museum, but has become a local civic center supporting the meetings and activities of many local and regional organizations.
Significant costs are expected to transport the 33 rare and unique snowmobiles from Valcourt, Quebec, to Naubinway and display them. Volunteer staff members for the museum are finalizing details for the transport of the 33 rare and unique snowmobiles. The contract with the J. Armand Bombardier Museum states that the snowmobiles must be picked up by March 24 of 2016. Volunteer staff members have also developed plans for a 32’ x 76’ addition to the west end of the building to house the 33 rare and unique snowmobiles. The addition will be cold storage at this time and heated and finished out with a library and working storage room at a later date.
The Board of Directors of the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum have approved the receipt of the 33 rare and unique snowmobiles and the addition to the building. The transport of the 33 rare and unique snowmobiles is expected to cost approximately $5,000.00 and the cold storage addition is expected to cost approximately $40,000.00. If enough funds are received the addition can be finalized out sooner.
With these most exciting happenings in mind the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum is therefore making an outreach to the membership and other interested parties to make contributions to the museum to assist in meeting the costs of the transport of the 33 rare and unique snowmobiles from Valcourt, Quebec as well as the construction of the 32’ x 76’ addition to house them. Please feel free to use the attached form for your donation towards this most momentous moment in the growth of the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum.
Building Fundraiser Form - 501c3 Not-For-Profit Corporation
The Museum Board is seeking matching funding for an addition, 32’ x 76’, to the existing building on US 2 in Naubinway. The Museum is fundraising for $50,000 needed, with three ways to contribute. A business or person who donates $100 - $1000, your name will appear on our Donor Wall. You will also receive a tax-deductible receipt. $1000 donors will also receive either lifetime gold membership or a free banner ad on the museum website for five years.
Return Fundraiser form to: Top of the Lake Museum
P.O Box 2
Naubinway, MI 49762
The fundraising contribution will be used to expand the existing building in Naubinway, and to continue the growth of the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum.
Other____ $100____ $500_____ $1000_______
Amount $________ Check____ Cash____ Credit Card____ (Please call with card info)
24th Annual Top of the Lake Show & Ride, Feb. 19 & 20, 2016, Naubinway, MI. Featured sled - Alouette. Rides - Friday at 10:30 am, Night Ride at 6:30 from the museum. Show Sat., banquet & auction & raffle drawings, at the Engadine Garfield Twp Hall. See Events page for more info.
Sign up by Jan 22 to get a voucher for a free button for the Soo I-500, Memories at the Mile Show, which will be Feb 6, 2016. Join us in a lap around the mile oval track just before the start of the Soo I-500 Race!
Look for the Museum booth at the indoor Novi, MI Snowmobile Show, the weekend of Nov. 6-8, 2015!
The November issue of SnowGoer magazine has an article about the Museum in their section about "The Ultimate Michigan U.P. Ride Guide" (page 51).
TV 6 out of Marquette, MI came to do an interview with Charlie about the Waywego snowmobile. It was aired on Oct. 16, 2015. Here is the link: http://uppermichiganssource.com/news/local/up-snowmobile-museum-contains-over-130-unique-sleds
The next show for the museum will be the St. Ignace Tractor/Snowmobile Show. Last year was our first year and we are excited about inviting everyone to bring what you have for our second year. It will be held in St. Ignace, MI the weekend of Sept 11 & 12, 2015 at the Little Bear Arena, downtown St. Ignace, MI. We will have snowmobiles inside the arena and the 900+ tractors will be parked outside in the parking lot. It's quite the sight. We would like to get registrations ahead of time. Please contact the museum at 906-477-6298 and we will get the form to you. There is no charge to display.
The Museum will have a booth at the Vintage National Snowmobile Show in Midland, MI the weekend of Aug 7 & 8, 2015. Be sure to stop by and say hi!
TV 9 & 10 News, Cadillac, MI was here to do a story about the museum and it aired on Jan 28, 2015. http://www.9and10news.com/story/27962005/sightseeing-in-northern-michigan-top-of-the-lake-snowmobile-museum
The Feb. 2015 issue of American Snowmobiler magazine has a great article about our 2014 Show Ride. Mike Carr went on the ride and wrote the article. Check it out!
Oct 19, 2014. It's our first anniversary in the new building!. My, how time flies....And we have loved every minute of it! If you were a year ago, you need to come again and see how much more we have in here now. On Oct. 21, the Budweiser Drag Sled is leaving us and being replaced with the Arctic Cat Boss Cat III. We have added 2 more annual shows to our schedule (the St. Ignace Tractor Show, 2nd weekend in Sept, and the Soo I-500 Vintage, Memories at the Mile Show, the 1st Sat. in Feb). made lots of new friends and changed our hours so that we are open every day of the week (except for Thanksgiving Day, Christmas, and Easter). Our attendance continues to grow every month, our gift shop continues to expand and we were able to get the stone work done on the building and the front part of the driveway paved this summer. We would not be where we are today with out the awesome support of everyone out there who has helped in any way they can! We wholeheartedly Thank You!!
Sept 19, 2015 will be our Swap Meet and Auction. If it's time to clean out the garage, keep us in mind! The Swap Meet will be from 8am till 2pm. The Auction will begin at 2:15 and all recreational vehicles or items are welcome. It will all take place at our new museum site on US 2 in downtown Naubinway. You can list your auction items on www.postulaauctions.com. You can find more information on our Featured Events page. This is a fundraiser to help us pay our winter heating bill.
May 13, 2014 - We have received our first payment from the AmazonSmile Program. If you place an order under AmazonSmile and click on the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum as your charity, .05% of your order will come to us. Here is the link: http://smile.amazon.com/ch/61-1513668. We appreciate all donations!
A New Show for us - Top of the Lake Show, Sept. 5 & 6, 2014 in St. Ignace, MI. This show will be in conjunction with the St. Ignace Tractor Show held the same weekend. Our snowmobile show will be held in the enclosed Little Bear Arena East, in downtown St. Ignace. Displayers are asked to arrive between 3pm and 8pm on Thursday, Sept 4 to avoid the traffic conjestion on Friday am. This will be a fun show, with fun trophies awarded on Sat. at 3pm and the cost to display and for admission is free. Any donations will go toward the Museum Show Fund. Call the museum, 906-477-6298 or email, firstname.lastname@example.org, for the registration form and more information. 900+ tractors crossed the Mackinac Bridge for this show last year. Come and help us make this an even greater event. Next year's show will be the weekend of Sept 11 & 12, 2015. Pre-register at the Museum.
The MSA magazine had a great article in their Jan, 2014 issue about our Grand Opening coming up, on Feb 14, 2014! We also had an article in the Jan, 2014 issue of Lake Superior Magazine. Check them out!
I-500 Show update. We all had a great time at the Soo I-500 and 45 machines made the vintage lap around the track just before the race began. Lou Hunt led the pack with his 1973 Polaris Starfire, which was the sled that he raced in the I-500 in 1973! He also won the People's Choice trophy at our show (the only trophy we handed out this year). We hope more can join us next year. We're also thinking about doing a short ride on Friday, the day before the race and show. Let us know what you think.
The Museum is now in charge of the Antique & Vintage Snowmobile Show which will take place on Feb 7, 2015 at the Soo I-500 Race in Sault Ste. Marie, MI. Anyone attending this show will be able to take their sled on one lap around the race track just before the beginning of the annual I-500 race! This is a very unique and special treat.Contact us at the museum for the registration form and information.
Oct 19, 2013 - The new, bigger and better, Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum is now OPEN and ready for business! Our hours will remain the same for now, but we are still working on some things, so there is almost always someone here before and after those hours. Or give us a call (906-291-0628) and we will do our best to open up for you. We want to show off the great selection of snowmobiles that 46 owners have put in here on loan. Our new address is W11660 US2, Naubinway, MI 49762.
June, 2013 - The new building is making great progress!! You can follow along with the pictures posted on the New Building/Photos page on the website, or on the Museum page on facebook. The donations of equipment, labor, food, & moral support have been amazing! You can go to the New Building page to find out what our needs are, and a list of donors. Together we can get this done. We thank you!
"Wild Bill's Run" DVD available at the museum in Aug, 2013: This is the strange but true story of Wild Bill Cooper. Part Arctic adventure and part crime caper, WILD BILL’S RUN is an unforgettable ride with a true American folk hero. In the winter of 1972, Wild Bill Cooper led a ragtag crew of mechanics, ranchers and photographers on a grueling expedition across the polar ice. During some of the darkest days of the Cold War, their goal was to snowmobile 5,000 miles from Minnesota to Moscow. They didn’t quite make it.
May 10, 2013 - Groundbreaking Ceremony ! The Groundbreaking was on Friday, May 10 at 2:00 pm at the new museum site on US 2 in downtown Naubinway, MI. Here is the link for the 9 & 10 News video of the Groundbreaking: http://www.9and10news.com/story/22221410/ground-breaking-ceremony-marks-new-chapter-for-upper-peninsula-snowmobile-museum. You can also find pictures of the event on the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum facebook page. Also you will find a photo gallery of the building's progress on this website, under the New Building page.
On March 14, 2013 the State Savings Bank of Manistique, MI approved our loan for the new building! With your donations and donated labor pledged for the project, we are able to borrow $200,000, which is the minimum needed to get the building up and open. With this amount, we will be keeping the payment almost the same as what we have been paying for the last 4 years. We will continue to need your support to keep the museum growing. We have lots of ideas! Stay tuned to this website and facebook for updates as the project progresses. We still have snow, but it will eventually go and then we will begin!
On Feb. 2, 2013 Charlie, from the Museum, took the 1969 Timberwolf on the Vintage Lap around the track at the Soo I-500 in Sault Ste. Marie, MI. The Timberwolf was made in the Sault, and was the 'Pace Sled' for the 1970 I-500 race. It was donated to the Museum this spring by David Blair and restored by 5 Museum members. It is now in the Museum. It is something to see!
On Dec. 7, 2012 the Museum was awarded a $35,000 grant through MCACA (Michigan Council of Arts and Cultural Affairs) for the new building! Many thanks to MCACA and Laura Marohnic, with MI-SBTDC, for her hard work on this grant. The new building project is one step closer!
The January, 2013 issue of SnowGoer Magazine has an article about the 13 Best Snowmobile Museums in North America, and Top of the Lake Museum was rated #1 and has a fantastic article about the museum! Thanks to Chris Riley and David Wells for their great work.
Feb. 2012 - The Museum has received a framed print of a Special Tribute from 6 State Legislators and also signed by the Governor of Michigan. We are honored to be noticed by the Legislators and Governor. It is on display at the Museum.
We currently hold two major Upper Michigan antique & vintage snowmobile events annually that is suitable for the entire family: The Annual Top of the Lake Swap Meet the second Sat. in Sept. (Sept. 17, 2016) and the Antique & Vintage Snowmobile Show and Ride, the 3rd weekend in Feb.(19th & 20th, 2016)
Why Donate?To continue reaching our goals, which include getting into a building on US 2, we depend on the help of people like you. Whether its a yearly membership, visiting the museum, taking part in a fun activity, buying raffle tickets, or making a donation.
WANTED: New Members!
If you would like to become a supporting member of the Museum, or already are a member and need to renew your membership, call the Museum and Marilyn will set you up. The cost is $50 per year. A membership includes free admission for 2 to the Museum and all museum events, 2 newsletters a year and the pride in helping to save a memorable part of snowmobiling history.
|Online Vintage and Antique Snowmobile Museum Store
Check out our antique snowmobile museum store and browse our clothing, hats, Top of the Lake items, light switch covers, patches, books, children's handcrafted snowmobile rockers, and more! We will continue to add new snowmobile related items in the future, so check back often. All purchases are made securely online through PayPal or call the museum with your credit card order.
As of July 29, 2010 we are the owners of approximately 1 acre of property on the north side of US 2, downtown Naubinway! Someone volunteered his labor and equipment to clear the land and a local logger donated his equipment and labor to chip the trees. We had someone excavate the land for us. The Groundbreaking was held on May 10, 2013 and we moved into our new building on Oct. 19, 2013. If you would like to be a part of this great venture, please contact the Museum! We are open to all ideas and information.
With all of the donations we have received of memorabilia, money and snowmobiles, we realize this has become a project of love and memories made by so many people. It is definitely not "our" museum but "your" museum. As you can guess, it has taken a lot of hard work and help to build and establish a bigger and better museum. We want to make you a big part of this project. We have donation boards made to list donors and contributors, whether for a business, snowmobile club, individual donor, or donation of equipment and/or labor. We call it our Donor Wall.
Online Antique Snowmobile Related Videos & Information
We also have the videos, Old Iron I, II, III, IV & V & VI by Memo-Vision Video Productions, for sale. Video II has a segment on the Museum featured along with several other great features, which last almost 2 hours and Video IV has a segment about the Vintage National Show, July 14, 2012. Due out in Sept. 2014 is Old Iron VI, which will feature the new Top of the Lake Museum.
|Thank you for visiting! We look forward to seeing you at the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum and Michigan's Upper Peninsula!|