About Charlevoix's Mushroom Houses:
Designed and built by Charlevoix native and legend Earl Young, the Mushroom Houses are 28 of the most fascinating stone structures ever built. An avid nature lover, Young constructed each house from the stones and boulders that line the miles of shoreline in Northern Michigan.
Charlevoix Main Street (CMS) sat down with Edith Pair (EP) for a Q&A.
CMS: Why did you want to be a small business owner?
, owner of Mushroom House Tours
, started strictly with walking tours in 2009, but soon realized that she needed to be able to use transportation so customers could view ALL 28 houses. So in 2015, she purchased the first 6 seat GEM car and the tours sprung to life. The GEM tours became a success virtually overnight! You can find her based out of Elements Gallery at 211 Bridge Street or book your tour online here.
: I have always dreamed of owning my own business since I was a kid. It’s wonderful feeling to be a part of the community and know that I am doing a small part of keeping Charlevoix thriving to its fullest potential.
CMS: Why did you choose to open a business downtown Charlevoix?
: I grew up in Charlevoix and absolutely love it....I feel so proud to be a part of it and I wouldn't live anywhere else in the world.
CMS: Tell me a little bit about your business.
EP: When I owned a gallery below the Weathervane, people would constantly ask about the Mushroom Houses. Finally a woman just offered to pay me to take her to them and it was an “A-Ha” moment. From that point on...I started full steam ahead and never looked back!
CMS: What do you enjoy most about living and working in the Charlevoix area?
EP: From and artistic view, Charlevoix is a stunning place to live with absolutely everything you could want as far as nature, beauty and things to do....to me....it’s perfection.....even in February!
CMS: What is something unique about your store/business?
EP: We offer a service that is unlike anything in the area. We are so lucky to have the Mushroom Houses only here and so it’s a one-of-a-kind experience!
CMS: How would you describe downtown Charlevoix?
EP: Downtown Charlevoix is like a scene from a Thomas Kincade painting... the epitome of quaint living and it literally puts a smile on my face thinking about it.
CMS: How has Main Street helped your business?
: Main Street is an invaluable asset in getting our business name out there and making it the most it can be. I couldn’t imagine my tours succeeding like it does without them. They are absolutely top notch in customer service and helping us with anything and everything at anytime......true heroes in my eyes!
CMS: What’s your favorite thing about your business?
EP: My favorite thing about my business is all the different and wonderful people I meet from all over the country and even the world. I stay in touch with many of my tour patrons to this day and we become fast friends by the end of the tour.....it’s pure joy!
CMS: What’s your favorite Charlevoix event?
EP: My favorite Charlevoix events are of course the art shows and Apple Fest. They are so well maintained and with the most beautiful background... it brings in so many people and just makes you feel so content with our community. I love hearing people marvel at how lucky we are to live here.
CMS: Is there anything else you would like to add?
EP: I often wonder what it would be like if I lived somewhere else and that nowhere in the world would ever give me the comfort and joy that Charlevoix does. It warms my heart to see so many Charlevoix graduates that own and operate businesses in town and I love that generations continue to thrive and grow in this little piece of paradise!
What customers are saying:
"I have done several tours with Edith with both family and friends. Each one was so enjoyable and every time I learned something new." -Leanne Ackert
"I went and it was an incredible experience. I've lived here most of my life and I was amazed at how much I didn't know about Earl Young and his houses. Edith is very informative. Fun tour. Would go again." -Darsi Spencley Lee