Of all the small towns and villages in West Michigan that I’ve photographed this summer, Caledonia is the most dominated by grain elevators. I’ve always loved the look of feed mills and grain elevators. (The former tend to mix different grains for feeding animals locally, while the latter are meant for bulk shipping of grain, though they sometimes do both.) So there’s a lot of images with the Caledonia Farmers Elevator Co. as one of the features.
Caledonia is small, with a population of a bit over 1500. The elevator company is the biggest physical presence in the historic business district. There are also some lovely traditional buildings. Local businesses include a recently started pub, an older “family tavern,” a café, and a spirit shop selling items related to local teams. Caledonia is proud of its high school athletes. It has new looking school campuses. Notice the pennants on the utility pole with images of local athletes.
In addition to shops, there is a modest-looking Masons lodge in town, serving the wider Kent area. I’ve only been inside one Masons lodge, the one in Alexandria, Voirginia, that is also a monument to George Washington. It’s grandiose and has a tower that offers a nice view of the greater Washington, D.C. area. I’m curious what smaller local ones like this look like inside.
I got some good reflections images in local shop windows, some showing off the Caledonia Farmers Elevator Co. facilities.
The town has a few classic Midwestern style buildings with the rectangular front faces. I’ve played up the colors a bit, as usual, using strong saturation and soft focus to give the images a bit of a Polaroid feel. The second one is a place that sells local sportswear.
Here are a few more images that offer a bit of the feel of the village, featuring the Elevator Co. facility in the background.
Finally, leaving the historic business district, driving home, I saw the local American Legion Post. I was not surprised to see one. They are a feature of many small towns in the area. This one stood out for having a tank sitting in front of it. The business sign with the prominent flag decorating it balanced the tank in the foreground left and legion post in the middle in the background.
Enjoy the early fall weather–which, in West Michigan, means, stay dry, stay cool, or stay warm, depending on the day or even time of day. COVID19 is still wreaking havoc in Michigan, more in the northern part of the state than the south. With schools and businesses back to more normal behavior, we may also get a return of flu, which mercifully was absent last year. So take good care of yourself and others.