'Love Ludington' features sand angel world record attempt

Sand Angel World Record

LUDINGTON, MICH. - Ludington was so successful at breaking a Guinness World Record for the world's longest ice cream dessert last June that it is going for another world record this summer -- this time involving sand angels and donating to an important cause.

It will be a signature event for the city's June 10 "Love Ludington" weekend, along with the opening of the Port of Ludington Maritime Museum.

Ludington holds its annual "Love Ludington" weekend June 10 and 11 to officially kick off summer, featuring the "Be Someone's Angel" Guinness World Record Attempt for the Most Sand Angels June 10 at 1 p.m. at Stearns Park Beach, followed by the grand opening of the Port of Ludington Maritime Museum at 5 p.m. at 217 S. Lakeshore Dr.

The weekend also will feature favorite annual events like the 37th Annual Ludington Lakestride and the Pirates of the Caribbean Shoreline Cruise on the S.S. Badger.

"We officially launch summer in Ludington with this festive 'Love Ludington' weekend chock-full of fun, family-friendly activities – and the sand angel contest and new maritime museum are really going to be special," said Kathy Maclean, executive director of the Ludington Area Convention & Visitors Bureau. "Visitors and residents alike can experience what makes Ludington unique while celebrating the arrival of summer."

"Be Someone's Angel" Presented by Spectrum Health Foundation Ludington Hospital with West Shore Bank.

Visitors can come to Stearns Park Beach in downtown Ludington Saturday, June 10 to join this Guinness World Record attempt to create the most sand angels simultaneously – a record set in Pembrokeshire in Wales in 2015 with 352 angels. Event planners anticipate up to 5,000 participants.

While a free event, a $20 donation per participant is suggested that will create a special fund at the Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital Cancer Service Center to help area cancer patients with medical expenses. Title sponsor West Shore Bank has already pledged $25,000 to open the fund.

Participants should arrive at noon, and the world record attempt will take place at 1 p.m.

An official Guinness World Record judge will be on site to verify in real time if the event breaks the current record. Individuals and groups are welcome, and participants are advised to register online in advance.

The Love Ludington weekend also will feature favorite annual traditions, including: 

Port of Ludington Maritime Museum Grand Opening
Located in the former U.S. Coast Guard Station restored to its 1934 exterior (and also a landmark on the National Register of Historic Places), this "museum within a museum" will entertain, enlighten, and instruct through a variety of diverse, family-friendly, interactive exhibits providing a captivating look at the Ludington area's rich maritime heritage. Visitors will experience piloting the Pere Marquette 22 car ferry into Ludington's harbor, learn the unique light signals of Lake Michigan's many lighthouses, and see authentic artifacts used at Ludington's harbor and by its Coast Guardsmen and car ferry sailors.

The museum opens for the first time to the public Saturday, June 10 at 5 p.m. with a grand opening event, featuring a simulated U.S. Coast Guard air and sea rescue, ribbon-cutting ceremony, free docent-led tours of the museum, and trumpet fanfare as the S.S. Badger enters the harbor. The museum is open for tours that evening until 8 p.m. Following the June 10 opening event, the museum will be open year-round 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week. (Check the website for admission fees and membership information.) ludingtonmaritimemuseum.org

37th Annual Ludington Lakestride
This 37-year race series provides runners a beautiful running race near Lake Michigan, with options for a 5K, 10K and half marathon, as well as a one-mile fun run. The free fun run departs Friday, June 9 at 6 p.m. from the west end of Ludington Avenue, and no pre-registration is necessary. The 5K, 10K and half marathon races begin at 8 a.m. Saturday, June 10 at 612 N. Lakeshore Dr. (by Nader's Motel and Suites) and finish at Stearns Park Beach on Lake Michigan. 

The half marathon passes through Ludington State Park featuring a run down a sand dune plus return route with views of the dunes and Lake Michigan. Registration fees vary, and participants can register online at runsignup.com. Packet pick-up and late registration is available Friday June 9, 5 to 8 p.m. at Lakestride Race Central at the center of Stearns Park Beach, and Saturday June 10, 7 to 8 a.m.

Pirates of the Caribbean Shoreline Cruise on the S.S. Badger
Passengers can wear pirate costumes and speak in pirate lingo on this always-popular Lake Michigan cruise Saturday, June 10 from 9 to 11 p.m. along Ludington's shoreline aboard America's last coal-fired steamship (boarding begins at 8:30 p.m.).

In addition to the two-hour cruise, the $39 ticket includes a Badger Party Buffet with desserts and soft drinks, and live music by "Two Dudes in Flip Flops" featuring guitar, steel pan and vocals. A cash bar is available with drink specials. Children 5 and under are free. An advance ticket purchase is recommended since this shoreline cruise sells out, and tickets can be purchased online at ssbadger.com/shop/book-now, by phone at 800-841-4243, or at the ticket office.

"Ludington is the place to be June 10-11 – a perfect time to visit when the weather is warming up but before the full crowds of summer," said Maclean. "We encourage travelers to kick off their summer season with a trip to Ludington."

Courtesy: Blue Blaze PR for the Ludington Area CVB

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