Ooh, la la. Michigan has its own Paris, complete with Eiffel Tower.
But the name and the replica of the world-famous landmark have nothing to do with France.
According to the reliable reference book Michigan Place Names by Walter Romig, the Mecosta County community was originally named Parish, by John Parish, the first white settler in the area north of Big Rapids.
The hunter and fisherman chose the spot on the Muskegon River in 1851 and founded the namesake village in 1865. But the following year when the post office opened the name on the postmark was Paris.
In 1980 local high school students built the 20-foot tall replica Eiffel Tower, which is perched in Paris Park near the river and old fish hatchery.
The 40-acre county park has 68 campsites and is adjacent to the White Pine Trail State Park, a 92-mile linear park for bicyclists, hikers, cross-country skiers and snowmobilers.
France may have the genuine Eiffel Tower, but can you camp and snowmobile in that Paris?
Area C on map
All stories and photos copyright Kath Usitalo unless noted otherwise