I'm a Michigan transplant. After spending almost a year here, I'm starting to feel like I'm finally starting to become somewhat of a real Michigander.

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Getty Images
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I can pronounce Dowagiac without hesitation

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Google Maps
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I know (most) of the flavors of Faygo

MLive/YouTube
MLive/YouTube
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And I can point to my hand to show my friends from back home where in the Mitten state I now live.

Big Joe Pesh
Big Joe Pesh
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But I learned a new thing today thanks to my fiance who is a native Michigander. Apparently, there's more than a bridge diving us as a state. There's also a word we all don't pronounce the same.

He told me recently while we were driving around, that when he went to college at Ferris, he had a roommate from the UP, who was very adamant about the pronunciation of one word, despite the fact that he had never heard that word pronounced the way he did on TV or Movies.

Phizzy
Phizzy
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What word are we all mispronouncing according to Yoopers?

It may not be a word you're saying a lot on a day-to-day basis unless you run a day spa. But, when you do say it, it matters:

Sauna

Enjoy the sauna
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Sure you may think it's universally pronounced saw-na, like you see in TVs and movies, but our yooper friends proudly pronounce it as "sow-na".

Sauna
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Which is the actual correct pronunciation?

Technically, the Yoopers are correct.

While you may find people giving you weird looks when you pronounce "sauna" with an o sound instead of its traditional a sound, you're pronouncing it like the Finnish do. It's an ancient word of theirs for a traditional bath.

You may not win over a lot of friends saying it this way, but you can feel that smug sense of satisfaction knowing you're saying it properly, unlike most of us "trolls" in the lower peninsula.

Don't Call Yourself A Yooper Unless You've Been To These Michigan Upper Peninsula Places

It can almost be looked at as a different state entirely, while encompassing everything beautiful about Michigan. There are some spots that are truly breathtaking, and if you've never planned a trip to the upper peninsula, make sure you're comfortable with long drives.

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