North America > United States of America > Midwest > Michigan > Central Michigan > Alma
- For other places with the same name, see Alma (disambiguation).
Alma is a city in Central Michigan, nicknamed "Scotland, USA," and is the largest population center of Gratiot County, with 9,275 residents.
It's small-town atmosphere is ideal for people who are looking for safe neighborhoods and easy driving, yet its active community organizations still provide a vibrant calendar of events for people who enjoy theater, music, and other forms of entertainment. Alma's historic downtown district is located on Business US-127. Alma is famous for its annual Scottish-themed Alma Highland Festival & Games, held on the campus of Alma College, a prestigious 4-year private liberal arts institution founded in 1886. Both the City of Alma and Alma College have embraced a Scottish heritage. Another historic landmark, Masonic Pathways Senior Living Services has been located in Alma since 1911, and is also home to the Michigan Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons. MidMichigan Health has a large presence in Alma, with its recently expanded Gratiot Medical Center.
Centrally located near the crossroads of US-127 and M-46, the city of Alma is easily accessible from all parts of the state of Michigan by car.
Alma is served by both Greyhound and Indian Trails bus lines with connections to the larger metropolitan areas of Lansing, Grand Rapids, Detroit, and Chicago. There is a local bus service known as Dial-A-Ride Transit (DART) that provides service throughout Alma and neighboring St. Louis.
The Great Lakes Central Railroad and Mid Michigan Railroad bisect Alma, used predominately for freight service. However, special passenger train tours have recently become a summer tourism attraction, transporting riders from as far south as Owosso, north to Mt. Pleasant or Cadillac and back. Often tours temporarily stop at Alma College, allowing riders to explore the Alma College campus and the downtown shopping district.
The Gratiot Community Airport, located 3 miles southwest of Alma, offers flight services to business, individual, and freight customers. The airport is capable of handling commercial aircraft and small jets. Three Point Aviation manages operations, including flight plans, aircraft maintenance, catering, and self-serve fueling.
The Fred Meijer Heartland Trail, a paved converted railroad line, connects Alma to the hamlets of Elwell and Riverdale to the west. It is expected that the trail will soon be completed between Riverdale and Edmore, which will make the trail one of the midwest's longest uninterrupted paved trails, reaching from Alma to Greenville. Area residents frequently utilize the trail for bicycling, jogging, walking, and inline skating.
Dial-A-Ride Transit (DART) provides transportation service throughout Alma and neighboring St. Louis. Alma's 2.6-mile Riverwalk follows the Pine River, connecting the northeast and southwest corners of the city, also linking to the extensive Fred Meijer Heartland Trail, making Alma an exceptionally walkable community.
- Alma College, 614 W. Superior St., toll-free: .
- Pine River.
- 1 St. Mary Church, 510 N. Prospect Ave. (Immediately south of Wright Park.), ☏ . Completed in 1970 by William Wesley Peters of Talesian Architects (Frank Lloyd Wright foundation); the church is a rounded building with sweeping conical towers. Enter off of Prospect Avenue if front doors are locked. Sunday and Daily Mass.
- Gratiot County Players, 217 E. Superior St., ☏ .
- Alma Cinemas, 3002 W. Monroe Rd., ☏ .
- 300 Bowl, 3000 W. Monroe, ☏ .
- Club Rox, 7900 N. Alger Rd., ☏ .
- YFC Student Center, 2550 N. Cheesman Rd., ☏ .
- Alma Public Library, 351 N. Court Ave., ☏ .
- 1 Alma Riverwalk.
- Fred Meijer Heartland Trail.
- Pine River Outfitters Canoe Livery, 1010 Michigan Ave., ☏ . Offers canoes and pontoons for hourly or daily rental. Launch at Horse Creek, or get transported to/picked up from other spots along the Pine River.
- The Book Shoppe, 316 N. State St., ☏ .
- Alma True Value Hardware, 102 W. Superior St., ☏ .
- Stacey's Men's Shop, 120 E. Superior St., ☏ .
- Huling's Hobby House, 208 E. Superior, ☏ .
- The Cobbler Shop, 115 E. Superior St., ☏ .
- Carolyn's Cake & Confectionary, 125 E. Superior St., ☏ .
- Alma's Bob Moore Flowers, 123 E. Superior St., ☏ .
- Tom Billig Flowers & Gifts, 107 E. Superior St., ☏ .
- Family Electronics, 111 E. Superior St., ☏ .
- Pizza Sam, 104 E. Superior St., ☏ .
- El Vaquero #2 Mexican Restaurant, 330 E. Center St., ☏ .
- Ponderosa Steakhouse, 7300 N. Alger Rd., ☏ .
- Big Boy, 7990 N. Alger Rd., ☏ .
- Main Cafe, 117 E. Superior St., ☏ .
- Petticoat Junction, 2400 W. Monroe Rd., ☏ .
- Shifter's Fine Dining, 3130 W. Monroe Rd., ☏ .
- Great Wall Chinese, 203 W. Superior St., ☏ .
- Stucchi's Ice Cream & Frozen Yogurt, 101 E. Superior St., ☏ . Also serves gourmet hot dogs, soups, chili and more.
- Bravehearts Pub, 218 E. Superior St., ☏ .
- Pine Knot Bar, 308 N. State St., ☏ .
- Alma Comfortable Inn, 3110 W. Monroe Rd, ☏ .
- Triangle Motel, 131 W. Lincoln Rd., ☏ .
- Alma Motel, 1575 Wright Ave., ☏ .
- Saravilla Bed & Breakfast, 633 N. State St., ☏ .
Alma is a good starting point to head to the "mitt" of Michigan - aka Northern Michigan. Here are a few other places that aren't necessarily in Northern Michigan to get you out and away from Alma:
- Mount Pleasant is 20 minute drive north from Alma. Mt. Pleasant is home to a Saginaw Chippewa Indian community, which throws a big pow-wow each year.
- Lansing, the state capital, is about an hour away via car. It's a college town, being home to Michigan State University, one off the biggest universities in the country.
- Holland, Michigan, not the Netherlands! It's about a two hour drive. Go during the spring, to see all of the beautiful tulips and enjoy the town's Dutch heritage.
- Muskegon is two hours away and has clean lovely beaches with bike trails to visit on Lake Michigan.
- Detroit is also two hours away, and one of the most famous American cities - home to the car industry, revitalization, soul music, and more.
|Routes through Alma|
|Mackinaw City ← St. Louis ←||N S||→ Ithaca → Lansing|
|Muskegon ← Howard City ←||W E||→ St. Louis → Saginaw|