RAPID RIVER, Mich. (WJMN) – U.P. Wild Church held a prayer and blessing ceremony today to honor the monarch butterflies during their time of migration.

Monarch butterflies migrate twice a year, once from the north to the south, and the next from the south back to the north. The migration from north to south is happening now as the seasons change.

The U.P. Wild Church held a ceremony to pray for the butterflies as they begin their journey this season.

“We had a blessing of the Monarchs this afternoon, and we had a lot of people come out for that,” said Susan Jamison, a Monarch Project volunteer. “Unfortunately there weren’t too many monarchs flying around, but we have had three different groups of monarchs since August 31st have gathered here and have left, so the first two groups for two to three hundred monarchs, and a hundred plus left yesterday. So we are hoping that in the next week or so we’ll have more gathering and migrating from Peninsula Point.”

Monarch butterflies tend to stop at Peninsula Point in Rapid River on their migration journey. The area provides a nice resting place before they have to fly across Lake Michigan.

“Peninsula Point is actually a main area for monarchs,” said Jamison. “It was, people were in 1994, were going to the Forest Service wondering why are there so many monarch butterflies down at Peninsula Point. And so, people started looking into it, wild life unlimited funded a grant and so we had people that worked with that grant and found out that they, this was a prime spot for migrating. That they would funnel down the peninsula. They don’t like to fly over the water, so the southern most tip they would fly over to door county in migrating, so it’s one of the more famous spots for butterfly, for monarch migration.”

If you are interested in volunteering to help keep up with monarch butterflies, you can contact your local Forest Service. You can click here to find the Forest Service web page.

If you are interesting in learning more about the U.P. Wild Church, you can find their Facebook page here and their website here.