Where are pets permitted on South Bass Island (Put-in-Bay)?

Hotels
– Bay Lodging (888.742.7929)

Campgrounds
– South Bass Island State Park (866.644.6727)

Vacation Rentals
– Birds Nest Resort (419.285.6119)
– Bormans Cottages (419.341.9640)
– Dave’s Rentals (419.285.2812)
– Put-in-Bay Cabins (440.967.3395)
– Saunder’s Cottages (419.285.3917
– The Wee Anchor (419.285.5055)

Parks
– DeRivera Park
– Oak Point Park
– South Bass Island State Park

Attractions
– Perry’s Family Fun Center (designated areas)
– Perry’s Memorial & Visitor Center Grounds (outside)
– Saunder’s Resort Golf Course

Restaurants
– Boardwalk Main Deck
– Frosty’s Backyard
– Joe’s Bar (patio only)
– The Goat (back patio only)
– Reel Bar (patio only)

Ferry
– Miller Ferry

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What are the prices for the ferries that take you to the Lake Erie islands?

Goodtime I Lake Erie Island Cruises

Goodtime I Lake Erie Island Cruises docked at Kelleys Island.

Goodtime Lake Erie Island Cruises
Jackson Street Pier, 109 W. Shoreline Dr., Sandusky
Daytime Island Hopping Cruise:
Enjoy a relaxing day on Lake Erie aboard the Goodtime I. Visit Kelleys Island and Put-in-Bay. Live narration and a full-service snack and cocktail bar. ADA accessible. *Schedule subject to change, please call ahead.
Schedule: May 24-25; May 31 and Jun 1; Tues-Sat Jun 14-Aug 23; Aug 30-31. Boarding begins at 9 am; boat departs Sandusky at 9:30 am.
Rates: Adult (13-59 yrs): $27.54, Senior (60 yrs and older): $24.48, Child (5-12 yrs): $16.32, Child (5 yrs and under): Free. Reservations recommended. Group rates available for 20 or more.

The Jet Express is the only catamaran ferry on Lake Erie.

The Jet Express is the only catamaran ferry on Lake Erie.

Jet Express from Port Clinton to Put-in-Bay on South Bass Island
3 N. Monroe St., Port Clinton
Passenger-only ferry service from downtown Port Clinton to downtown Put-in-Bay aboard hydro jet catamarans.
Crossing time: 22 minutes.
Schedule: May 2-4, 9-11, 16-18 and Sept 19-Oct 26 Fri-Sun only; May 22-Sept 14 daily. Please check website for detailed schedule.
Round-trip rates: Adult: $33, Child (6-12 yrs): $6, Child (5 yrs and under): Free, Bicycle: $9. Prices subject to a temporary fuel surcharge.

Jet Express from Sandusky to Kelleys Island
101 W. Shoreline Dr., Sandusky
Passenger-only ferry service from downtown Sandusky to Kelleys Island aboard hydro jet catamarans. Free parking.
Schedule: May 23-26; May 30-Sept 1; Sept 5-7; Sept 12-14.
Round-trip rates: Adult: $33, Child (6-12 yrs): $9.50, Child (5 yrs and under): Free, Bicycle: $9. Group rates for 15 or more and season passes available. The Jet Express is also available for private charters. Prices subject to a temporary fuel surcharge.

Jet Express from Sandusky to Put-in-Bay on South Bass Island
101 W. Shoreline Dr., Sandusky
Passenger-only ferry service from downtown Sandusky to downtown Put-in-Bay (with a quick stop at Kelleys Island) aboard hydro jet catamarans. Free parking.
Schedule: May 23-26; May 30-Sept 1; Sept 5-7; Sept 12-14.
Round-trip rates: Adults: $39.50, Child (6-12 yrs): $11.50, Child (5 yrs and under): Free, Bicycle: $9, Group rates for 15 or more and season passes available. The Jet Express is also available for private charters. Prices subject to a temporary fuel surcharge.

Jet Express Inter-Island
Passenger-only ferry service between Kelleys Island and Put-in-Bay on South Bass Island.
Schedule: May 23-26; May 30-Sept 1; Sept 5-7; Sept 12-14.
Round-trip rates: Adult: $23, Child (6-12 yrs): $6, Child (5 yrs and under): Free, Bicycle: $9. Group rates for 15 or more and season passes available. The Jet Express is also available for private charters. Prices subject to a temporary fuel surcharge.

Jet Express Port Clinton Island Hopping
3 N. Monroe St., Port Clinton
Passenger-only ferry service from Port Clinton to Kelleys Island and Put-in-Bay (South Bass Island) aboard hydro jet catamarans.
Schedule: May 23-26 and Sept 5-14 Fri-Sun only; May 30-Sept 1. Please check website for detailed schedule.
Round-trip rates: Adult: $47.50, Child (6-12 yrs): $9.50, Child (5 yrs and under): Free, Bicycle: $9. Group rates and season passes available. Prices subject to a temporary fuel surcharge.

Jet Express Sandusky Island Hopping
101 W. Shoreline Dr., Sandusky
Passenger-only ferry service from downtown Sandusky stopping at Kelleys Island and on to Put-in-Bay (South Bass Island) aboard hydro jet catamarans.
Schedule: May 23-26; May 30-Sept 1; Sept 5-7; Sept 12-14.
Round-trip rates: Adult: $47.50, Child (6-12 yrs): $13.50, Child (5 yrs and under): Free, Bicycle: $9, Group rates for 15 or more and season passes available. The Jet Express is also available for private charters. Prices subject to a temporary fuel surcharge.

Kelleys Island Ferry Boat Line.

Kelleys Island Ferry Boat Line.

Kelleys Island Ferry Boat Line
510 W. Main St., Marblehead
The only passenger/vehicle ferry service between Kelleys Island and Marblehead runs daily year-round, weather permitting. There is a parking fee at the Marblehead dock
Schedule: Regular service available Apr-Dec, weather permitting. During peak season, ferries run every half-hour and offer late night service on weekends. Please call or check website for details.
Round-trip rates: Adult: $19, Senior (62 yrs and older): $16, Child (5-11 yrs): $12, Child (4 yrs and under): Free,
Automobile: $30, Motorcycles: $16, Bicycle: $6. Group rates available. Can accommodate tour busses, RVs, trucks, and tractor trailers for additional fee.

Middle Bass Ferry.

Middle Bass Ferry.

Middle Bass Ferry
341 Bayview Ave., Put-in-Bay
Ferry between South Bass and Middle Bass islands. Check out the Sun-Thurs special package and points of interest on Middle Bass. Dock is located at The Boardwalk on South Bass Island and the township dock on Middle Bass Island.
Schedule: Please check website for detailed schedule.
Rates: Please check website for rates.

Miller Ferries to Middle Bass Island
5174 E. Water St. (SR 53 N), Port Clinton
Offers daily passenger and auto transportation from Catawba. Reservations are not required for passengers. Vehicle reservations are required and may be made up to two weeks in advance, but must be made by 4 pm the prior day. No same day, round-trip vehicles on Sat, Sun, and holidays. Crossing time: 40-45 minutes depending on weather conditions. Can accommodate RVs, trailers, boats and tour buses for an additional fee. Free parking.
Schedule: Year-round service; weather permitting. Please call or check website for detailed schedule.
Round-trip rates: Adult: $19, Child (6-11 yrs): $6, Child (6 yrs and under): Free, Automobile: $43 (rate does not include passengers), Bicycle: $6, Group rates available.

Miller Boat Line.

Miller Boat Line.

Miller Ferries to Put-in-Bay on South Bass Island
5174 E. Water St. (SR 53 N), Port Clinton
Offers daily passenger and auto transportation from Catawba (SR 53 N). Departing every half-hour during peak times. Offering auto transportation. No vehicle reservations accepted; first-come, first-serve basis. No same day, round-trip vehicles on Sun or holidays. Vehicles leaving Put-in-Bay must be in line by 4 pm daily, 3 pm on Sun and holidays. Crossing time: 18 minutes depending on weather conditions. Shuttle bus and taxi available from the Miller dock on South Bass Island to downtown Put-in-Bay for a fee. Golf cart/bicycle rentals nearby. Can accommodate RVs, trailers, boats, and tour buses for an additional fee. Free parking.
Schedule: Year-round service; weather permitting. Please call or check website for detailed schedule.
Round-trip rates: Adult: $14, Child (6-11 yrs): $3, Child (6 yrs and under): Free,  Automobile: $30 (rate does not include passengers): Bicycle: $4, Group rates available.

Pelee Island Transportation Company
Jackson Street Pier, 109 W. Shoreline Dr.,  Sandusky
Passport required to enter Canada. Offers auto and passenger transportation from Jackson Street Pier in downtown Sandusky to Pelee Island. Must arrange overnight accommodations as ferry does not return in same day. Advance reservations required. Crossing time: 2 hrs to Pelee Island and 4 hrs to mainland.
Schedule: Please check website for schedule. Schedule subject to change, please call ahead.
One-way rates: Adult: $13.75 to Pelee Island, $21.25 to mainland (Kingsville or Leamington, ON)
Senior (65 yrs and older): $11.25 to Pelee Island, $17.50 to mainland (Kingsville or Leamington, ON)
Child (6-12 yrs): $6.75 to Pelee Island, $10.50 to mainland (Kingsville or Leamington, ON)
Child (5 yrs and under): Free
Bicycle (excluding rider): $6.50 to Pelee Island, $10.25 to mainland (Kingsville or Leamington, ON)
Motorcycle (excluding rider): $14.50 to Pelee Island, $22.75 to mainland (Kingsville or Leamington, ON)
Standard Vehicle: $30 to Pelee Island, $46.50 to mainland (Kingsville or Leamington, ON). Call for oversized vehicle rates; know length and height of vehicle at time of calling.

What’s new this year in Ohio’s Lake Erie Shores & Islands?

Spring is a time of reawakening and rebirth, making it the perfect season to rediscover Ohio’s Lake Erie Shores & Islands and fall in love. The region located between Toledo and Cleveland boasts stunning scenery, a burgeoning culinary scene, some of the world’s best amusements, and a rich history.

When spring is in the air, ferries begin regular trips to the fabulous Lake Erie islands – Kelleys Island, Middle Bass Island, and South Bass Island’s village of Put-in-Bay.  Charter captains start their search for Lake Erie’s sweet spots, where catches of perch, bass, and walleye are abundant. Pleasure boaters return their boats to the crisp water to tour shoreline communities. Visitors tour lighthouses, monuments, and museums. Birdwatchers ascend on the many natural areas that lay claim to one of the most spectacular spring songbird migrations in the country.

 

A number of exciting new amusements, exhibits, and dining options are popping up with fresh reasons to visit or re-visit this coastal destination. See what you won’t want to miss this spring and summer.

Lake Erie Love 

So much to Love!

Ohio’s Lake Erie Shores & Islands offers so much to love; we just can’t stop singing about it. Either can up-and-coming Nashville country artist Walker Hayes. Hayes visited the region last summer to film an all new advertising campaign for the destination including a television commercial and full-length music video. Walker’s single, “Lake Erie Love,” is a feel good tune about having the time of your life right here on Ohio’s north coast. Since 2010 Walker Hayes has had two hit singles on the US Country Top 100 charts; we’re hoping this is his third. The “Lake Erie Love” single is available for download on iTunes and the video can be viewed at SHORESandISLANDS.com.

 

Pipe Scream, Lake Erie Eagles, and SlingShot bring more family fun to Cedar Point!

The best amusement park in the world, 16 years running, plans new family rides, changes to the park’s Camp Snoopy area, and a two-year renovation project for Hotel Breakers. New for the 2014 season are Pipe Scream – combining the best of a roller coaster and a flat ride in one, and Lake Erie Eagles – a classic flying scooters ride where riders can alter their flight experience by raising and lowering their own carriages. Both rides will be located on the Gemini Midway. Another new, separately priced attraction will also debut near the Gemini coaster. SlingShot is billed as one of the most exciting vertical thrill rides around, launching riders in an open-air two-person capsule nearly 360 feet into the sky at speeds of up to 62 mph. SlingShot will open later in the season. Other new additions to the park include Starbucks, Auntie Anne’s, Cinnabon, a Coca-Cola Freestyle station, Yogurt Plus, and the new sports bar Chickie’s and Pete’s. The beginning of a two-year Hotel Breakers renovation project is already underway, featuring upgrades to both the exterior and interior of the historic hotel.

 

Stay Where you Play!

Cedar Point recently announced an expansion to its popular Lighthouse Point resort which will feature 52 new deluxe cabins which can accommodate up to 10 people. Each of these new cabins features two full bathrooms, four flat panel televisions, a dorm-size refrigerator, microwave, coffeemaker, outdoor charcoal grill, and picnic table, along with free wireless internet access. A new registration building will help guests get to their cabins and RV sites even faster. Lighthouse Point is conveniently located along the west bank of the Cedar Point Peninsula and consists of 64 cozy cottages, 40 quaint cabins and 97 luxury RV campsites in addition to the 52 new cabins. Guests who stay at any Cedar Point resort enjoy perks such as discounted park tickets and early entry. 

 

New Hampton Inn & Suites at Ohio Turnpike

The Leonard Longer family is opening their fourth area hotel in 2014, a Hampton Inn & Suites located next to the current Hampton Inn in Milan, Ohio near the Ohio Turnpike. Longer has no plans to close the existing Hampton Inn, but may reflag the property under another brand. The $8 million dollar, 4-story, 52,000 square foot inn will feature 70 rooms – a third of those rooms will be twice the size of a standard hotel room. The brand-new hotel will also feature a meeting room, indoor pool, Jacuzzi, and fitness room, as well as an outdoor grilling deck accessible from the pool area.

 

Magnuson Hotel Coming to Sandusky

The former Best Budget Inn, part of the SanduskyHotels.com family, has undergone extensive renovations inside and out and will open this spring as a Magnuson Hotel. The economical, family-friendly hotel is just minutes from Cedar Point and island ferries, and features an outdoor swimming pool.

 

More Good Times on Lake Erie

Goodtime Island Cruises offers new ways to get on the water in 2014. In addition to their popular island-hopping cruises and Friday night party cruise, Goodtime I is offering Monday lunch cruises on Sandusky Bay as well as Tuesday and Thursday evening sunset cruises. A number of special event cruises round out the offerings. 

 

Paper Moon Vineyards producing “Honeymoon” Mead with Local Honey

Vermilion’s Paper Moon Vineyards is now bottling and selling mead, made with honey from local producer, Stein’s Honey in Collins, Ohio. It is called Honeymoon, acknowledging both the honey in the product and the name of the winery. Mead is traditionally an alcoholic beverage made by fermenting a solution of honey and water. This new offering was recently awarded a bronze medal at the Florida State Fair Wine Competition!

 

Liberty Aviation Museum Continues Expansion

This young museum (just over a year old) has big plans for 2014, including an additional hanger and the launch of its very own PT boat. The hanger is being added for protecting visiting aircraft, additional storage, and where work can be completed on the Ford Tri Motor plane being constructed by the Tri Motor Heritage Foundation. When this group of volunteers finishes their work, plans are for the plane to be available for public rides. If all goes as planned, also available for public rides will be PT 728. This “Patrol Torpedo” boat, same type of boat John F. Kennedy captained in WW II, has been in the process of restoration for the past year. Once launched, the PT 728 will be available for public rides, an opportunity that exists nowhere else in the country. The vintage B-17 bomber “Yankee Lady” will make several visits to the museum this season as well, offering public rides. The military history theme of the museum is kept intact with the Tin Goose Diner, a restored 50’s era diner where a cook dressed in period attire sometimes offers up large breakfast portions on tin trays like were used in the military of the past. 

 

Sandusky, Ohio is the New Race City, USA

Sandusky’s ThorSport Racing team accomplished a unique feat in 2013 – the first non-North Carolina race team to win a racing championship. ThorSport has been racing since 1996 with its headquarters in Sandusky. This past season ThorSport won not one, but two championships – driver Matt Crafton won the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and driver Frank Kimmel won the ARCA championship. The team’s third driver, Johnny Sauter (NASCAR Trucks) finished fourth in the series but won the team’s first Daytona 500 race at the beginning of the season. Groups can tour the state-of-the-art, 100,000 square-foot facility and a team shop is open to the public. The team’s goal for 2014 is back-to-back championships. It’s never been done.

 

Avallone’s Dining Empire

Chef Cesare Avallone and his wife, Andrea, continue to expand on their downtown Sandusky dining empire. Already owners of four successful restaurants, Zinc Brasserie, Crush Wine Bar, KitchenBar, and Dockside Café, the Avallone’s have relocated and expanded their flagship restaurant and opened a new dining option. Zinc’s new location at 215 E. Water St. is significantly larger than the original restaurant which allows for more seating. The new location also allowed for the introduction of their fifth culinary venture, Hearth Tavern. Hearth Tavern features hand-crafted wood-fired pizzas and an extensive craft beer list.

 

Kudos to Ghostly Manor

Congratulations to the Criscione family and Ghostly Manor Thrill Center for two recent designations. Ghostly Manor was included on Forbes.com’s list of “10 Great Haunted Attractions” and their Lake Eerie Fearfest was rated #3 on Haunted Attraction Magazine’s “Must See Haunts of 2013.” Now that’s something to scream about!

 

The Blind Perch

The Blind Perch Speakeasy Pump & Grill is a newly opened (October 2013) fine-dining, casual, gastro-pub, grounded in fresh locally farm-grown meats, Lake Erie fish, and Ohio produce. The restaurant serves a variety of specialty cocktails along with the chef’s award-winning Pork Cheek Confit and its namesake Perch.

 

Ups and Downs

The Merry-Go-Round Museum debuts a new exhibit in 2014. “Ups and Downs” is an exhibition to connect carousels and family recreation from the early 1900s to present. Featuring antique merry-go-round animals, this display examines how carving factories would create different animals like several menagerie elk, created by various carousel manufacturers. A jumping giraffe will take the stage during the exhibit, as will a wolf, lion, and tiger. The Toast of Ohio Wine Heritage Festival, a major museum fundraiser, will take place in July this year and, for the first time, on the museum grounds. In addition to several Ohio wineries offering tastings and glasses, music, food, and art will be available at the event.

 

The Boys are Back in Town!

Danny Boy’s, a well-liked Cleveland-area Italian Eatery, has returned to Sandusky after a short absence. Popular for its pizza, large portions, and Rat Pack theme, the restaurant returned at the close of 2013. There are four other Danny Boy’s locations around Cleveland.

 

Vermilion one of Ohio’s Best Hometowns

Congratulations to the entire community of Vermilion, featured in Ohio Magazine as one of Ohio’s Best Hometowns. The annual issues (five different towns are featured on regional covers) select the state’s best hometowns. Vermilion was selected by the magazine’s editors because it “embodies lakeshore living and a thriving sense of community.” Vermilion is noted as a great hometown because of its excellent schools, natural beauty and charm, the Vermilion in Bloom program, and its resident’s dedication to volunteerism, among other reasons. We couldn’t agree more!

 

Additional Growth at Erie-Ottawa International Airport

“International” is the key word in this Port Clinton-based airport’s name as it has now officially welcomed its first international flight.  The origination of the flight was Pelee Island, Canada, and although this is a relatively short distance, it still marks a new era for the airport and its ability to offer customs entry and other services associated with flights across the U.S. border.  The airport is now the home to Griffing Flying Service. This airline formerly based in Sandusky will provide charter air services, flight instruction and other offerings to the public. The airport is increasing its capacity with the addition of seven private hangers. It also will be increasing the number of special events such as fly-in socials available to pilots as well as local residents.

 

Milan Museum’s Renowned Glass Exhibit

The Milan Museum (formerly Milan Historical Museum) is excited to promote the renovation of its acclaimed art glass collection, completed in 2013.  The renovation includes pieces from Tiffany, Lalique, Steuben and Dominic Labino.  See the new multimedia display of how art glass is created and experience a collection unparalleled in our area. The Milan Museum also introduces a new $20 family admission, good for two adults and two children 17 and under.

 

More Upscale Dining in Vermilion

41 North will soon open in the former Martino’s International Café building – Martino’s recently relocated three doors to the east. 41 North is an upscale steak and seafood house, featuring locally sourced and sustainable ingredients by Chef William Skinner. 41 North provides a large dining room as well as private bar area and outdoor patio.

 

Sandusky Dining Scene is Exploding

Another dining option has come to downtown Sandusky for 2014. Amarone Italian Restaurant relocated from its Huron, Ohio location to the former Markley’s restaurant building at 160 Wayne St. Amarone’s popular authentic Italian menu is available at the new location along with an expanded menu of appetizer options. The new restaurant is also open for lunch and includes a full bar. 

 

New Cocktail Joint in Sandusky

Locally owned and operated, Volstead Bar takes patrons back to the fascinating days of the Roaring Twenties by artfully crafting classic cocktails in a pleasant, laid back atmosphere.  Housed in what was once the old Dorn Winery and later the Green Door brothel, the Green Door Building is shrouded in Sandusky lore and has seen an array of tenants throughout the years.  Combining these intriguing historical remnants with the speakeasy practices of the aforementioned years, Volstead Bar harkens back to the days of Old Sandusky amidst the New Sandusky renaissance.

 

The Olive Scene

A new specialty shop for foodies has arrived in downtown Vermilion. The Olive Scene is an extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar tasting emporium, which offers over 40 different types of olive oils and balsamic vinegars, all ready for tasting. The olive oils are pressed to enhance both flavor and nutrition. The white and dark balsamic vinegars come directly from Modena, Italy, the birthplace of balsamic vinegar.  Rounding out the experience is a selection of specialty foods, cruets, handmade pottery, and other items that compliment an olive oil lifestyle. Stop in and see just how good healthy can taste.

 

Put-in-Bay’s Newest Old Bar

Reel Bar, which is located in the historical Put-in-Bay building formerly known as Tony’s, features great burgers, unique sandwiches, Lake Erie fish, fresh salads, 16 draft beers and fresh squeezed cocktails. The bar is under new management and has been completely remodeled to offer a comfortable setting which honors its island roots. The intimacy of the stage makes performers accessible to the audience, creating a great entertainment experience. Reel Food, Reel Music, Reel Bar.

 

Chill Out at Snow Fest

Sawmill Creek Resort introduced a new way to embrace the winter chill. The resort, located on frozen Lake Erie, is offering Snow Fest – daily ice skating, snowshoeing, and cross country skiing. Skating takes place on a frozen pond adjacent to Mulligan’s Pub, which is convenient for when you’re ready to warm up with a hot bowl of chili or steamy hot chocolate. Skate and snowshoe rental is available, with trails throughout the expansive property and golf course.  Cross country trails are available but you must provide your own skis. Follow Sawmill Creek on Facebook for info on daily activities, as they are weather permitting.

“Don’t Give Up The Ship” – Battle of Lake Erie Bicentennial

Wind, water and history converge as an international flotilla of tall ships sails into Lake Erie’s western basin this August. Get an up close look at these ships in ports including Catawba Island, Kelleys Island, Middle Bass Island, Port Clinton and Put-in-Bay. These communities will host festivals featuring tall ship tours, day sails, musical entertainment, historical re-enactors and more.
Battle of Lake Erie Bicentennial
The events culminate with a full-scale re-enactment of the Battle of Lake Erie at the actual battle site near Put-in-Bay.

The following are just a few events planned for the Battle of Lake Erie Bicentennial Celebration. Click here to view a full list of events.

May 25, 2013
Salute to the Troops: Honoring War of 1812 Casualties
Perry’s Victory Visitor Center Lawn, Put-in-Bay
419.285.2184, 11:30 am
The National Park Service honors our nation’s service men and women with music, games and inspiring speakers on the back lawn of Perry’s Victory Visitor Center.

August 29-September 2, 2013
Tall Ships Challenge® Great Lakes 2013
Various locations in Ohio and Canada
419.285.2832
Celebrating the 200th anniversary of the major military events of the War of 1812 that took place in the Great Lakes. Tall Ships will dock in the communities of Catawba Island, Port Clinton, Kelleys Island, Middle Bass Island, Put-in-Bay, and in several Canadian ports including Leamington, Kingsville, Amhurstburg, and Windsor. There will be a Tall Ship Bicentennial Parade on Sept 1 and a re-enactment of the Battle of Lake Erie featuring the Tall Ships on Sept 2.

August 30-September 1, 2013
Reenactment Village at Put-in-Bay
DeRivera Park, Downtown Put-in-Bay
419.285.2832, 9 am-5 pm
Featuring historical demonstrations, education, and crafts as well as food and craft vendors.

September 2, 2013
Battle of Lake Erie-Battle Reenactment
Put-in-Bay
440.349.3210, 12-2 pm
Experience history first hand in one of the largest celebrations ever to take place on Lake Erie. Join the crew or join the fleet. Take part in the battle as a tall ship crew member or as part of the fleet aboard your own vessel.

What’s New in 2013 in Ohio’s Lake Erie Shores & Islands?

This new addition to Cedar Point will be the longest wing roller coaster and boast the longest drop of any wing roller coaster on the planet.

This new addition to Cedar Point will be the longest wing roller coaster and boast the longest drop of any wing roller coaster on the planet.

GateKeeper Flies over Cedar Point! Cedar Point will introduce a winged roller coaster, GateKeeper, forever changing the landscape of the Cedar Point Peninsula. When it opens in May, GateKeeper will be the longest winged roller coaster and boast the longest drop of any winged coaster in the world. The track will dramatically fly above the main entrance of the park, passing over arriving guests with rolling flyover maneuvers. The $30 million investment will surely help Cedar Point maintain its status as “roller coaster capital of the world!” Cedar Point has also announced an investment of $45-$60 million over the next three years for upgrades to the resort’s hotel properties.

Don’t Give Up the Ship! Events are well underway, building up to the Battle of Lake Erie Bicentennial Celebration. The 200th Anniversary Commemoration takes place Labor Day Weekend, August 30 – September 10, 2013 and will include such highlights as more than a dozen tall ships, Navy ships (both American and Canadian), a celebration parade featuring The Ohio State University Marching Band, and a re-enactment of the battle. Considered by historians as the turning point in the War of 1812, the Battle of Lake Erie saw Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry and his crew defeat the British Royal Navy to secure U.S. control of the Great Lakes. His victory message to the general inspired our young nation: “We have met the enemy and they are ours.”  Visitors will be able to tour tall ships, enlist as crew members in the re-enactment, or be part of the Bicentennial fleet or militia.

Commemorations of the Bicentennial also include the issuing of the Perry’s Victory Ohio quarter dollar by the U.S. Mint in April and the Battle of Lake Erie U.S. postage Forever® stamp in September.

BRIG NIAGARA IN HARBOR FULL SAIL - COPYWRITE JOHN E. REES.

Brig Niagara in Harbor Full Sail – Copyright John E. Rees.

Ohio’s vital role in the War of 1812 is also commemorated in a new exhibit at the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center. ‘The War of 1812 on the Ohio Frontier’ runs from February 13 – October 7, 2013 and includes artifacts and manuscripts from both public and private collections to offer insights into the war’s battles on the Ohio frontier.

More Indoor Waterpark Fun! Maui Sands Resort, which reopened its hotel rooms in 2012 under new ownership, will reopen its indoor waterpark in the spring. The Hawaiian-themed property boasts a 45,000 square foot waterpark amongst a tropical garden setting with state-of-the-art water attractions, slides, and activity pools. Attractions include Liquid Lava, MakaMaka Treehouse, Kai River, Coconut Cove, and Pineapple Bay. A variety of rooms and suites are available within the hotel, and group packages are offered.

Embark on a Magical Quest! A new live-action game attraction has arrived at Great Wolf Lodge. MagiQuest blends video game technology with a three-dimensional adventure. With magic wand in-hand, families can explore an enchanted kingdom and join in the ultimate adventure as they enchant objects, befriend a pixie, learn from an ancient wizard, and outwit a dragon. The experience takes place on all four stories of the resort as players follow clues to unlock mysteries – their magic wands creating music, activating animatronics, and opening treasure chests. The resort’s new MagiQuest store features magic wands for game play along with medieval-themed costumes and accessories to enhance the experience.

Bounce & Play! Ghostly Manor Thrill Center has expanded its family-friendly fun attractions for 2013. A new edition to the complex has allowed for a large selection of bounce houses and an extensive play area. The additions are designed for guests age 12 and under, and join the already popular Skateworld, Wizard’s Journey 3D Blacklight Mini Golf, XD-3D Theatre, and Ghostly Manor haunted house. There is no charge for the play area and a combo pass for the bounce houses will be available with other on-site attractions.

The Jet Express is the only catamaran ferry on Lake Erie.

The Jet Express is the only catamaran ferry on Lake Erie.

Island Anniversaries! Jet Express passenger ferries to Put-in-Bay and Kelleys Island celebrates 25 seasons of fun. Jet Express has been providing the fastest way to the islands since 1989, providing exhilarating rides from Port Clinton and Sandusky. Jet Express also offers special excursion cruises and is available for private parties. Heineman’s Winery, Ohio’s oldest family-owned winery and Put-in-Bay’s oldest business is celebrating 125 years in business. The sixth generation of the Heineman family is excited to welcome visitors to taste their island wines and tour the neighboring Crystal Cave, the worlds’ largest geode. The Booga Shack at Caddy Shack Square on Kelleys Island is celebrating 20 years of the “Booga Invasion.” An island original since 1993, Booga Wear helps wearers uncover their inner “Booga” with the theme “Relax, it is your Right as a Human Being!”

Lakesiders to Splash! For the 2013 summer season, Lakeside Chautauqua plans to transform the east waterfront area into a recreational water play destination where children can experience a broader aquatic adventure using their imagination. The play area will feature a newly constructed, zero depth entry, children’s pool, and a state-of-the-art splash pad. Water-erupting turtles, frogs, and numerous other spray features will be staged throughout the 75-foot children’s splash pad. In addition, a patio area will be added east of the splash pad for parents to watch the children enjoy their water adventure.

Art Glass Redefined at the Milan Museum! The Milan Museum will unveil the year-long renovation of its acclaimed art glass collection.  Opening this June, the renovation includes pieces from Tiffany, Lalique, Steuben and Dominic Labino.  See the new multimedia display of how art glass is created and experience a collection unparalleled in our area.

Grab the Brass Ring! The Merry-Go-Round Museum celebrates the grand re-opening of “Grab the Brass Ring” for the 2013 season. The exhibit will feature new carousel animals as well the 1988 stamp horse and the fabulous Muller military stander (also known as the Ghost Horse) on loan from Cedar Point amusement park through early May.

Kalahari Resort Upgrades! Kalahari Resort has committed to a multi-million dollar renovation and development of various on-site amenities in 2013. The resort, home to America’s largest indoor waterpark and the Midwest’s largest resort convention center, has already delivered with the opening of Longneck’s bar and grill inside the convention center. Waterpark eatery Café Mirage has also recently expanded and new guest room amenities and improvements are expected.

Fall Bird Migration Celebrated with “World’s Friendliest Birding Event!The Midwest Birding Symposium is returning to Lakeside, Ohio September 19-22, 2013. This event which will attract more than 1,000 birders to the Lake Erie shore, is held every other year in the Midwest and includes programs by North America’s leading bird watchers and naturalists, an opportunity for birders to network with fellow enthusiasts, a vendor area, and guided bird walks at the area’s best birding spots.

Great Group Entertainment at the State! The Sandusky State Theatre has several new and a few returning “dinner and a show” options in 2013, perfect for motorcoach groups or date night. Plan on seeing Finnegan’s Farewell, Easter Celebration of Life and Resurrection, Always…Patsy Cline, Bob Goss and his Silver Sizzles Revue, Zombie Prom, Miracle on 34th Street, and more!

Catch Some Air! Take a thrilling ride on east Sandusky Bay with Air1 Airboats. Captain Tony Muscioni takes passengers on a 30-40 minute tour of the east bay, between the Cedar Point causeway and chaussee. View beautiful scenery, wildlife, Cedar Point, and the backside of many beautiful homes.

Scheele Preserve Grows! The Cleveland Museum of Natural History is adding an additional 10 acres of land to its Scheele Preserve on the north east side of Kelleys Island, including 330-feet of Lake Erie shoreline. The newly acquired property contains a mix of habitats including coastal forest, forested swamp, dunes, and shoreline. The preserve is now open to the public seven days a week, allowing for spectacular views of rare wildlife and migratory birds.

Biking Opportunities! Erie County’s only recognized off-road bike path, the Lake Shore Electric Railway Trail, will get some sprucing up in 2013. The existing path through the woods in Huron will be paved and expanded to allow ample room for bikers and pedestrians. The path, which runs parallel to U.S. 6 stretches 1.5 miles. A half-mile looping path is also planned for Sandusky’s Lion’s Park. The new trail will eventually link to the Sandusky Bay Pathway and is an added enhancement to the park that added a splash pad, basketball courts, new playground equipment, and restrooms in 2012.

Other Openings! Kitchenbar has joined the restaurant family of Chef Cesare Avallone (he already operates Zinc Brasserie, Crush Winebar, and Dockside Café). Kitchenbar features an Asian-fusion menu along with the same award-winning wine list as the adjacent Crush. Chef Avallone also plans a pizza oven restaurant in downtown Sandusky for later in 2013.  Ciao Bella Ristorante Italiano is slated to open in spring in Port Clinton’s Harbor Light Landing. Great Lakes Fibers sells hand-painted alpaca yarn, artisan scarves, shawls, socks, rugs, and much more. Watch the alpacas and llamas graze and see the studio where their fiber is transformed into wearable art. Classes will be offered soon.

For more information contact:

Jill L. Bauer, Public Relations Coordinator
jill@shoresandislands.com, @JillBauerLESI

Joan Van Offeren, Executive Director LES&I-East
joan@shoresandislands.com

Larry Fletcher, Executive Director LES&I-West
larry@shoresandislands.com

Middle Bass Island, Ohio

One of the three Bass Islands, named for the abundance of smallmouth bass in Lake Erie’s western basin, this 750-acre island is home to about 30 year-round residents – although that number tops 1,000 between May and October. Originally named “Island of Flowers” by the French, Middle Bass Island is a naturalist’s paradise with outstanding bird watching opportunities especially at the Keuhnle Wildlife Area. Middle Bass Island State Park includes a 180-slip marina, new harbor master facility and visitors center, and primitive campground. There are a small number of shops and restaurants available. Visit their Facebook page for up-to-date information!

Put-in-Bay on South Bass Island

The Victorian era village of Put-in-Bay on South Bass Island has been attracting visitors for nearly 150 years. Hundreds of thousands travel here annually to enjoy family fun activities, outdoor recreation and a large variety of special events.
Many start out with a narrated tour on the Island Tour Train. For those wishing to go at their own pace there are golf carts, scooters, and bicycles to rent. Families will find plenty to keep the kids entertained including a butterfly house, miniature golf, gem mining, cave tours, arcades, a carousel, and go-kart racing.

History enthusiasts won’t want to miss Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial. The National Park Service manages this site that includes a visitors center and frequent interpretive programs offered by park rangers. Many other historical offerings document island history and heritage.

Outdoor recreational activities include charter fishing, boat/personal watercraft rentals, a nine-hole golf course, kayaking, and parasailing. There are numerous shopping spots and art galleries on the island along with a wide selection of restaurants and pubs to please every taste and budget. There are even two wineries and a microbrewery.

Of course, Put-in-Bay is also known for its exciting and varied music scene and more than a dozen establishments offer daily entertainment.

A range of lodging opportunities are available; see lodging charts for options. Many properties specialize in accommodating large groups for family reunions, company meetings, weddings and other events.