2018 : Blue Ice Brings Summer-Like Tourism Boost to Mackinaw City

When:
February 25, 2021 all-day
2021-02-25T00:00:00-05:00
2021-02-26T00:00:00-05:00

 

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Hotels and restaurants along the Straits of Mackinac have seen an infusion of cold cash.

“My tips have gone from $30 or $50 a day to $200 or $300,” said Megan MacLeod, a waitress at the Dixie Saloon in Mackinaw City. “I had a table from Georgia, another from Minnesota. People are coming from everywhere. It’s fantastic.”

With crowds pouring into the tiny community, a popular summertime stop for families headed to Mackinac Island or the Upper Peninsula, a usually quiet winter season has transformed the place.

“Tourism has been crazy,” said Rick Caldwell, front desk manager at Hamilton Inn Select Beachfront. “We even had to open other hotels. People have come from as far as Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio.”

Most of the visitors saw images of the rare and uniquely beautiful blue ice posted on social media and have gone to check it out for themselves.

“We haven’t had blue ice in about seven years,” Caldwell said. “And this was even better than last time.”

For the full article, see Phoebe Wall Howard, “Blue ice brings summer-like tourism boost to Mackinaw City“, MLive, March 16, 2018.

Tanda Gmiter, “Blue ice piling up near Michigan’s Mackinac Bridge“, MLive, February 26, 2018.

Hilary Brueck, “Rare blue ice usually only seen in the Arctic has come to US shores — and photographers are capturing stunning images“, Business Insider, March 2, 2018.

Ice only turns blue when it’s so tightly packed that those air bubbles inside aren’t big enough to reflect and scatter light anymore. The bubbles are so crammed together, they don’t have as much room to let the light shine through.

Ice only turns blue when it's so tightly packed that those air bubbles inside aren't big enough to reflect and scatter light anymore. The bubbles are so crammed together, they don't have as much room to let the light shine through.
Burley took this photo from the Lake Huron side of the Mackinac Bridge on Sunday night, Feb. 25, 2018.