Michigan has developed an amazing history over the years. We have pretty strong ties to the past throughout our cities, with some great architecture in towns big and small. Get off the highway sometime and drive the old 'state routes' to your destination. They run through small towns that barely show up on a map, but at some point were important centers of commerce, housing, or a place where a family took root and others joined them to battle the wilderness and scratch out a living.
Jackson isn't the smallest town out there, but it isn't a huge destination for a lot of people. But they have two amazing pieces of Michigan's architectural history in the City, not to mention some great old houses near the downtown. The Michigan Theater downtown was opened in 1930 and anchored the downtown until 1978. After years of neglect and decline, a non-profit group stepped up in the nineties to bring the building back to its former glory. Movies, concerts, theater, and even the Rocky Horror Picture show are on the marquee now, bringing a new generation of Jackson-ite back to the downtown. Check the schedule online and head over for a show.
But really, seeing a movie or a play isn't the most unique night out, right? Especially if you are on a date. You need something memorable. So follow up a night at Michigan Theater with a trip south of downtown to the Sparks County Park. There you will find The Cascades. Which, like any great civic institution, were one man's vision of something great for the City. Since 1932, the Cascades have wowed visitors. For lack of a better description, they are man made waterfalls. Which may not sound like much, but in the 30's, they were likely viewed as a wonder of the modern world. And through community support and long term management by the County, they are still wondrous. It really is a one-of-a-kind end to any evening.
For pure uniqueness, Jackson certainly has things to offer that make it a place to visit. That is really what Michigan tourism is all about. Go off the beaten path a little bit and find something really cool to tell your friends about. And they will come and the cycle will start anew for a new generation of Michigan explorers.