Petoskey, Michigan: Underwater Crucifix of Gerald Schapinski

Schapinski accidentally shot himself in 1962. His tombstone crucifix -- 11 feet tall -- broke, was bought by a scuba club as a marine memorial, and submerged just offshore in Lake Michigan. Visible to landlubbers only one day a year, when a hole is cut in the ice.
Address:
101 E. Lake St., Petoskey, MI
Directions:
Park at the Petoskey City Marina, and walk out onto the ice near the clock tower at Bayfront Park.
Hours:
One day only, in early March.
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Skin Diver Church.

Skin Divers' Church

A hole is chopped in the ice each year for one day at the beginning of March to allow Skin Diver Church pilgrims a view the submerged sanctuary. A white-marble crucifix was set up 65 feet down in Little Traverse Bay Aug. 12, 1962, by a local divers club, to honor diver Charles Raymond, who drowned in Torch Lake.

In 1985 the Michigan Skin Diving Council moved the crucifix to a more public 22 feet of water. The memorial now remembers all who lost their lives beneath the waves, in bodies of water everywhere.

[Cheryl, 03/17/2008]

During non-frozen months, adventurous visitors can take a boat out to a buoy floating above the crucifix, east of Petoskey Marina, and try to peer down.

Skin Diver's Church

Skin Diver's Church (I believe that's what it's called) . It is a small shrine on the bottom of Little Traverse Bay...but I don't know how many have actually seen it.

[Jodie Walker, 07/30/2000]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Archangel GrottoArchangel Grotto, Petoskey, MI - 8 mi.
Legs Inn - Upside-down Stove LegsLegs Inn - Upside-down Stove Legs, Cross Village, MI - 19 mi.
Giant Crucifix and Nun Doll MuseumGiant Crucifix and Nun Doll Museum, Indian River, MI - 16 mi.
In the region:
Man Killing Clam!, Cheboygan, MI - 24 mi.

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April 22, 2019

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