Opportunity Zone Investment Prospectus

Spotlight on Antrim County

Invest in a perfectly poised Opportunity Zone in this northwest Michigan town, Mancelona. Equidistant from the thriving hubs of Traverse City and Petoskey, this OZ is the ideal place to build out. Take advantage of the crossroads community of Mancelona, at the intersections of Route 66, Route 88, and U.S. Route 131. When you bring your business to this community, arrive by private plane at the Mancelona Municipal Airport, take in the sweeping vistas and green grasses at the Lakes of the North Golf Course, and visit the Village of Mancelona’s walkable downtown.

Investment Opportunities

Investment Opportunities

One Scholl Road
This empty lot is located on the southwest corner of US 131 and Scholl Road. The property available for sale is anywhere from 5-26 acres. Given the flat grade and location, it would be an ideal site for apartments, equipment sales, storage facility or a hotel with a restaurant.
Antrim County Business Park
This is an undeveloped 54 acre Business Park. Add additional adjoining parcels (100+ acres available) for rail access, perfect for shipping and receiving. This Business Park is close to downtown Mancelona.
310 Palmer Park Road
A vacant industrial parcel, 3-13 acres available for purchase, located at 310 Palmer Park Road, right in the Village of Mancelona. It is across the street from a few restaurants and commercial businesses, and adjacent to Palmer Park.

Value Proposition

Investing in Antrim’s Opportunity Zone provide the following benefits:

  • Small town living with quick access to urban and tourist hotspots near Lake Michigan

  • Centrally located in northwest Michigan, directly in between Traverse City and Petoskey 

  • Intersection of multiple high-traffic routes, with quick access to Michigan Interstate-75

  • Immediate rail access with the Huron and Eastern Railway bisection of Mancelona Township

  • Four seasons of outdoor recreation, and a central town that is well known for its community activities and family appeal. 

Location at a Glance

Antrim County’s Opportunity Zone encompasses the majority of Mancelona township and stretches into the Townships of Star and Chestonia to the north. The eastern-most border lines up with Hayes Township in Otsego County. 

This Opportunity Zone—and Mancelona Township—is directly located between Traverse City and Petoskey, resulting in a perfectly situated rural location within quick reach to large urban centers.The Village of Mancelona, which is on the western edge of Mancelona Township, is at the confluence of three major highways—Route 66, Route 88, and U.S. Route 131—and the Huron and Eastern Railway goes directly through the central downtown area. 

Manufacturing, specifically metal fabrication, drives employment in this area. Accommodation and food service is another major economic driver—two of every five workers works in one of these two industries.  

Tourism is driven by Mancelona’s vast natural resources. Deadman’s Hill, just north of town, offers sweeping views of the Jordan River Valley and serves as a trail head for this section of the North Country Trail. Wildlife in this natural area, from birdwatching to beaver dams makes this a great place to hike in the summer and snowshoe in the winter.

With a population of nearly 5,000 residents in a county of 23,000, this opportunity zone tract is an ideal rural community with space to grow. 


About Opportunity Zones

Opportunity Zones is a federal incentive program created in 2017 to direct private, long-term capital investment in distressed and under-capitalized areas, stimulate economic development and encourage job creation. It is one of many tools available that increases the return on investment for investors, developers, community leaders, entrepreneurs and business interests.


Benefits to Investors


Tax Deferral

Any individual or corporation can defer taxes on their capital gains—profits from the sale of an asset (such as stock, land and/or a business) —until December 31, 2026 if they invest in an Opportunity Zone.

Step-Up Tax Reduction

If investments in Opportunity Zones are held for at least five or six years, tax liability on the original gain is reduced by 10%. Investors had until December 2019 to receive the full 15% capital gain tax reduction.

Tax-Free Growth

Investors can keep all appreciation on invested gains and permanent deferral of tax liability is given if investments are held in an Opportunity Zone for at least 10 years.

Graphic Courtesy of:

Qualified Opportunity Funds (QOFs)

  • Investments in Opportunity Zones are made through a qualified Opportunity Fund—an investment vehicle that is set up as either a partnership or corporation for investing in an eligible property or business that is located in a Qualified Opportunity Zone
  • Any tax paying individual or entity (e.g. investment banks, CDFIs, philanthropy, angel groups, REITs and more) can self-certify as a local, regional or national Fund and finance a broad array of projects (housing, startup-businesses, industrial real estate, etc.).
  • QOFs must hold at least 90% of assets located in an Opportunity Zone in qualified opportunity zone businesses and or properties.

Opportunity Zones in Michigan

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Regional Story


The area surrounding Mancelona was settled by farmers in the 19th century, and the Township of Mancelona was established in 1871. Shortly thereafter, the Grand Rapids and Indiana Railroad came to the region and expanded trading reach to the rest of northwest Michigan. Aside from farming, the abundance of maple trees made charcoal readily accessible, which helped new industries, such as crude iron, grow the region rapidly. By 1900 Mancelona-Antrim was the largest village in the county, with the Antrim Iron Company as an economic driver. 

Antrim Iron eventually closed down in 1945 due to the scarcity of trees and more advanced technologies, and farmers transitioned to growing potatoes which remains the predominant crop. 

Given its beautiful surroundings and central location, outdoor recreation has remained a major draw for tourists to the area. Recreational developments flank the Opportunity Zone, with the Lakes of the North Recreation Community in the east and Schuss Mountain Ski Resort to the west. 

Current Industry Drivers

Manufacturing, specifically metal fabrication, is the largest industry in the Antrim area. More than a fifth of the workforce is employed in this field. Tourist-related businesses, such as accommodation and food services, are a close second for economic influence, with nearly 18% of the workforce. This is reflective of the robust recreational offerings the region has to offer. 

Retail trade and social and health services are also major industry drivers, employing 11% and 7% of the workforce, respectively. 

Antrim County continues to build on its recreational offerings and offer all-weather outdoor entertainment for any season. It strives to be a natural getaway destination for those who are trying to escape the crowds of the more traditional resort-heavy towns on Lake Michigan.  

Employment Center/Hub

The Village of Mancelona, on the western-most edge of the Antrim Opportunity Zone, is the retail and employment center of the region. This is where the major manufacturing employers are located, as well as the downtown food and retail establishments. 

Outside of downtown Mancelona, employment and development extends along Route U.S. 131 which bisects the region from north-south.

Major Employer Profiles

Lanzen Fabricating Company
Lanzen Fabricating Company, a family-run parts manufacturer, was founded in 1960 by Joe Lanzen. They have grown steadily over the past fifty years and now operate out of three locations —Mancelona, Harbor Springs, and Romeo. Their primary market is related to defense and transportation parts fabrication.
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Snyder Industries
Snyder Industries is an internationally-recognized manufacturer of storage and transportation equipment. Their durable products are utilized for diverse industries, including agriculture, pharmaceuticals, mining, food and beverage, and construction.
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Antrim Machine Products
A precision manufacturer for the following industries: Aerospace, Defense, Medical, Automotive.
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FAHL Forest Products
A Northern Michigan forestry & logging company buying standing timber in Emmet, Antrim, and Charlevoix Counties.
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Antrim County's Infrastructure

Great Lakes Energy and Northern Power Electric provide the community’s electric needs, DTE Energy provides natural gas, and there are four different broadband providers for this region. 

Mancelona Area Water and Sewer underwent major upgrades in the past few decades and serves the Mancelona community with all of their water needs. 

Recent Public Works Projects

Recent Public Works Projects

Mancelona Sewer and Water Upgrades
Type: Sewer | Cost: $20,000,000
Major investment for this community's growth to upgrade city-wide sewer lines.
Antrim County Population
Poverty Rate
Median Earnings
Median Household Income
4-Year Graduation Rate from Mancelona Public Schools


The area of Mancelona has a high home ownership rate (83%) and over a quarter of the housing is considered seasonal, due to the area’s tourist-draw. Demand for housing is high, especially because of its proximity and comparative cost advantage to nearby urban centers. 

28.3 Minutes
Average Commute Time, One Way
Percentage of Workers who Live in the OZ & Work in Antrim County

Community Strengths

Organizations of Note

  • White Pine Stampede XC Ski Marathon—Michigan’s oldest and longest cross county, cross country ski race, this annual event features 10K, 20K, and 50K options.

  • Mancelona Bass Festival—This annual tradition has been running for 65 years, and features a carnival atmosphere, games, rides, prizes and pageants.   

  • Mancelona Rotary Club—Rotary is Service above Self. The Rotary Club of Mancelona is a service club dedicated to bettering our community and those like it around the world.

  • Starlight Campground—This family friendly RV campground is a great way to experience the Up North great outdoors. Consider staying to view the annual Perseids meteor shower.

Culture & Heritage


Downtown Mancelona is a walkable, close-knit community, with its main retail corridor around US-131 and the intersection of State Street. 

The Downtown Development Authority was established in 1995, and since then it has been working hard to add streetscape improvements, facade assistance, and overall vision for increasing the welcoming and attractiveness of the central business district. 

Arts & Culture

Mancelona draws crowds during its three renowned community events each year: The White Pine Stampede - a cross country skiing event in February - the Mancelona Bass Festival in June, and a hunting competition, the Buck Pole, in November. 

Dining & Shopping

The small-town feel of the Village of Mancelona does not preclude it from having a variety of shopping and dining opportunities. The Iron Skillet Café and the local Dairy Delite & Grill are great stops while in the area and visiting.  

Outdoor Rec 

This area is surrounded by skiing, golfing, hiking, biking, and water activities. Right outside of downtown Mancelona is the Jordan River Valley.  Deadman’s Hill offers great views of the valley as well as serving as a trail head to the many miles of hiking trails through the Jordan River Valley.  The trails are part of the North Country Trail.

The Shanty Creek/Schuss Mountain Resort has ski trails and golfing immediately to the west, 6 miles outside of downtown Mancelona. The Lakes of the North Golf Course in the western part of the Opportunity Zone, has 18 holes, and a sprawling 7,000 acres of golfing. 

The shores of Lake Michigan, and all it has to offer, are a mere 15 minutes away, as well as the seclusion of Wetzel Lake a few minutes from downtown. 

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