Battle Creek (Michigan)
Battle Creek is a city in Calhoun County, West Michigan. 2003 estimated population 53,827. 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.
Well known for its breakfast cereal industry (Kelloggs and Post both started here) and not much else. The city was prosperous for much of the twentieth century, but like many small Midwestern cities, manufacturing jobs have declined in number and wages have stagnated recently. 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.
Greyhound stops at the Intermodal station downtown.
Kellogg Regional Airport handles private air traffic, but commercial flights operate from the Kalamazoo/Battle Creek regional airport in Kalamazoo.
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.
The Hart-Doyle-Inoye Federal Center is in 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.
Part of the old Fort Custer army facility is now Fort Custer State Park, centered on Eagle Lake. The State Park offers camping, swimming, and boating.
Each year, around the July 4 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. Field of Flight info is at http://www.bcballoons.com/
The usual chain-type family restaurants are clustered near I-94 on the southern edge of town.
The Arcadia brewery is on Michigan Avenue downtown.
The Mccamly Plaza Hotel has several hundred rooms of above-average quality. Other motels are mostly located near the Interstate highway.