Battle Creek is a city in Calhoun County, West Central Michigan, with a population of 51,000 (2019). It is well known for its breakfast cereal industry (Kelloggs and Post both started here) and the Battle Creek Sanitarium which was a high-end health spa started by W.K. Kellogg that was very popular with well-to-dos of the time. It is also known as the home of Sojurner Truth, famous for her work for women's rights and African American freedoms.
The city was prosperous for much of the 20th century, but like many small Midwestern cities, manufacturing jobs have declined in number and wages have stagnated. Kellogg Cereal, which supported the now-closed Cereal City attraction, has been especially hard-hit.
The city is located next to Fort Custer, a large National Guard base. Part of the old Fort Custer army base is now a State Park.
The city annexed several nearby areas in the 1980s and 90s, and now has an area of 43 square miles, much of it sparsely-populated.
- Calhoun County Visitors Bureau, 34 W Jackson St.
Greyhound stops at the Intermodal station downtown.
- 1 Battle Creek Transportation Center. Amtrak has several trains per day to Chicago (all westbound trains), Ann Arbor/Detroit (eastbound Wolverine Service), and Lansing/Port Huron (eastbound Blue Water Service).
- 2 Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International Airport (AZO IATA). Offers flights with Delta and United.
- 3 [dead link] W. K. Kellogg Airport (BTL IATA). A general aviation airport.
Battle Creek is the home of the Kellogg Company and Post Foods (division of Kraft Foods), famous for cereal and breakfast foods. The factories are located on the east side of town, but no tours are offered.
- 1 Hart-Doyle-Inoye Federal Center, 74 North Washington Ave. The former Battle Creek Sanitarium building and its twin-towers dominate the city skyline. The building itself has a fascinating history, but current security guidelines mean that non-employees cannot enter the facilities.
- 2 Sojurner Truth monument. Sojurner Truth, famous for her work in both women's rights and African American freedoms, was from Battle Creek and a large statue of her likeness can be see coming into town from the expressway, surrounded with various information placards.
- 3 First United Methodist Church of Battle Creek. One of Martin Luther King, Jr's last speeches was given here. A plaque commemorates the altar from which the speech was given.
- 4 Binder Park Zoo, 7400 Division Drive, ☏ , [email protected].
- 5 Kellogg Community College. Has a permanent art collection distributed throughout the campus.
- 6 Leila Arboretum.
- 7 Kingman Museum, 175 Limit St, ☏ , [email protected]. A natural history museum. Has a advanced planetarium.
- Kimball House Museum, 196 Capital Ave.
- 1 Firekeepers Casino (just West of Town off Interstate 94 at exit 104), ☏ . It has many slots and tables games, restaurants, bars, and a stage which attracts many high-profile performers.
- 2 Fort Custer State Recreation Area, 5163 Fort Custer Dr, Augusta, ☏ (park), toll-free: (camping reservations). Part of the old Fort Custer army facility, centered on Eagle Lake. The State Park offers camping, swimming, and boating.
- 3 W.K. Kellogg Auditorium.
- Field of Flight: 4 July annually. Each year, around the Independence Day holiday, the Field of Flight takes place at Kellogg airport. This includes an air show (often including the USAF Thunderbirds), a carnival midway, and the famous hot air balloon launch.
- CerealFest (The World's Longest Breakfast Table): mid-June. takes place every summer in downtown Battle Creek, featuring parades, entertainment and free cereal. (date needs fixing)
- Festival of Lights: late November – early January. takes place every throughout Battle Creek with most buildings sporting Christmas lights, and light-up displays of the 12 Days of Christmas with a Kellogg's twist. (date needs fixing)
- Lakeview Square Mall, 5775 Beckley Road. Small shopping mall with the typical store names in and around it.
- 1 [dead link] Festival Square Market. Hosts a farmers market.
The usual chain-type family restaurants are clustered near I-94 on the southern edge of town.
- Clara's, 44 McCamly Street South (By the River downtown), ☏ . A great local restaurant.
- Arcadia brewery, Michigan Avenue.
motels are mostly located near the Interstate highway.
- 1 Holiday Inn Battle Creek, 12812 Harper Village Drive, ☏ .
- 2 Mccamly Plaza Hotel, 50 Capital Avenue Southwest, ☏ . Several hundred rooms of above-average quality.
- Gull Lake is a half-hour NW of the city.
- Marshall is a pretty little town east of Battle Creek, the Dark Horse Brewery there has excellent micro-brew beer in a casual atmosphere. Marshall also has many fine Victorian houses and a pedestrian-friendly downtown.
|Routes through Battle Creek|
|Chicago ← Kalamazoo ←||W E||→ East Lansing → Port Huron|
|Chicago ← Kalamazoo ←||W E||→ Jackson → Detroit|
|Michigan City ← Kalamazoo ←||W E||→ Marshall → Ann Arbor|
|Grand Rapids ← Jct W E ←||N S||→ END|