I promise you I was born and raised in Michigan, but how is it I've lived my entire 33 years without ever having heard the term "Thumbcoast"? Referring to the shoreline over on the east side of the state along Michigan's "Thumb" to Saginaw Bay, I understand how the term came about. However, I find it rather....unsettling. There's got to be a better alternative, right?

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For the last 7 years I've been living away from the Mitten in states like Nebraska and Missouri which, try using your hand as a map there-- it's impossible! Perhaps my absence is to blame for my lack of familiarity with the term "Thumbcoast" but when I read the word recently on the Pure Michigan website it just hit my ear wrong! The excerpt in question read,

Welcome to Michigan’s Thumbcoast! We invite you to explore 140 miles of shoreline...Port Austin, Harbor Beach, Port Sanilac, Lexington, Port Huron, Marysville, St. Clair, Marine City, and Clay / Algonac are ready to welcome you to this awesome place known as Michigan's Thumbcoast.

Don't get me wrong, it sounds very enticing! I don't have a problem with the area itself, just the verbiage used to describe it. East coast, west coast...Thumbcoast? No. If the state of Michigan had a comments box, I would suggest the following names to refer to Michigan's coastlines:

Third Coast

Bell's Brewery gets it! Their Third Coast American pale ale is, "Named after our favorite coastline and a tribute to the Great Lakes region..." Not only is it a great beer, it's a great name. This is my top choice.

Port Coast

With the Thumb being home to places like Port Austin, Port Hope, Port Sanilac, and Port Huron, it seems only logical to refer to it as the "Port Coast".

Best Coast

With no saltwater or threat of sharks, I think we can all agree that the Great Lakes are best lakes-- hence the name "best coast". Although, the indie band of the same name may beg to differ.


The name describes what it is: the coast of the Mid-west. I don't think anyone could say anything bad about this suggestion!

Thomas Edison's Port Huron Home

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