Many of us have moved away for some amount of time. Our work, families, or education take us out of our hometowns—sometimes for a couple of years, other times much longer. You start to notice little things you took for granted during each trip home. In my case, visiting friends & family all around Genesee County made me realize the 5 things I missed the most — and glad I’m back to enjoy them again.

#1 YaYa’s Flame Broiled Chicken. This is a Flint area original. There’s nothing else like it anywhere in the US. (They have two franchise locations in the Tampa Bay, FL area, but it’s not the same.) YaYa’s Caesar Salad, homemade Caesar Dressing and flavors are unmatched. This was a lunch-time staple when I lived in Grand Blanc and worked in Burton. YaYa’s menu is, to-this-day, still fresh & healthy… unless you splurge on the Mac & Cheese and ask for two extra sides of dressing. (*raises hand* Guilty!)

#2 Traffic. Weird thing to miss right?! In Flint, we like to complain about how long it takes us to make it down Miller Road or the summer weekend Up North “bottle-neck” traffic on I-75 at I-69. In reality — It’s not so bad at all. Simply, poor planning on our part! We could use I-475 or side streets?! Giant cities around the country have 45 minute commutes, if not longer(!), one way to work — for just a few miles! I’ll never complain about traffic again (road conditions & construction… that’s another story).

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#3 Quick Weekend Trips Up North. The feeling we all get on Memorial Day Weekend: The snow is gone for sure. Let’s relieve the “cabin fever pressure valve.” Growing up in Otisville, I couldn’t wait for weekends in Tawas and Oscoda with family. So much time on the lakes, grilling and riding bikes until dark. Now, my family spends more time in Traverse City in the summer (free place to stay with family). Nothing beats a short drive to “get away from it all” and quick trip back without the hassle of an airport!

#4 Flint-Style Coney Island. This should be obvious to most Flintstones—other cities use actual chili on their hot dogs. That’s insane. You don’t put soup on a bun!! Plus, if you aren’t eating a Koegel’s all-beef hot dog, who knows what you’re eating. Whether it’s a coney at Angelo’s or the White Horse in Downtown Flint, extra mustard & light onion for me, please!

#5 Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland in Frankenmuth. There’s nothing like Bronner’s anywhere in the US. Nothing! As a kid, and to this day, putting up the tree, decorating inside & out and leaving it up until the end of January has been a family favorite. It’s Michigan — it’s dark a LOT— why not keep it festive?! Plus, driving through Crossroads Village and Downtown Frankenmuth to see all the lights…you can’t match that level of peace & holiday enjoyment in a warm climate. (Pro-Tip: Stop at Kern’s Sausages and the Fudge Kitchen -- thank me later.)

See our exclusive pics of Flint's Capitol Theater!

Behind-the-Scenes and Backstage at Flint's Capitol Theatre, Pt. 1

Take an exclusive look behind-the-scenes and Flint, Michigan's historic Capitol Theatre. Dressing rooms, control rooms, catwalks, and more.

Behind-the-Scenes and Backstage at Flint's Capitol Theatre, Pt. 2

Take an exclusive look behind-the-scenes and Flint, Michigan's historic Capitol Theatre. Dressing rooms, control rooms, catwalks, and more.

Behind-the-Scenes and Backstage at Flint's Capitol Theatre, Pt. 3

Take an exclusive look behind-the-scenes and Flint, Michigan's historic Capitol Theatre. Dressing rooms, control rooms, catwalks, and more.

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