Take a deep breath of fresh air at a number of interactive outdoor experiences at Michigan Maritime Museum this summer, while traveling on historical boats along Lake Michigan and the Black River. Live experiences aboard ships and boats are a main feature of the museum and take place along the hustle and bustle of South Haven’s modern harbor waterfront. Climb aboard the majestic historic replica tall ship Friends Good Will, which offers tours, day sails, sunset sails and private charters. Recapture the late 1890s through the 1930s on the river launch Lindy Lou, when boats served a transportation along the Black River. Speed along the river on the USCG Motor Lifeboat 36460 built in 1941 – it starred in the Disney film The Finest Hours, representing the greatest rescue in Coast Guard history. And treat yourself to a cruise on the 1929 Chris Craft Cadet Merry Time offering chauffeured luxury on the water. Reservations are strongly encouraged for all on-water experiences.
This summer is the 100th birthday of Bernida, a Universal Rule R Class Sloop and a thoroughbred racing yacht. Celebrations will take place all season long. Learn about her history at the main museum building and come to Bernida’s Birthday Bash on August 7, when a private sail charter will be raffled off with the proceeds going to her care.
The museum also has an indoor center where permanent and changing exhibits set the stage for adventure for the whole family. Featuring boats of all ages and design, the museum has fascinating information about maritime history, boat building, and maritime skills.
In late 2020, the Museum purchased the historic Jensen Fishery property doubling the size of their campus and waterfront. This summer the Museum will open a new small craft exhibit in one of the historic Jensen buildings featuring a variety of the museum’s small craft collection and antique outboard motors.
Once the new Jensen Fishery property has been fully developed, there will be tons of new open space on the water to enjoy the beautiful harbor views. So far, the Museum has raised over half of the $8 million needed to complete the project which will include a new two-story Maritime Heritage Center, new open spaces, additional docks, and a two-story lookout tower building with Lake Michigan views. The scope of this project will have a huge impact on the current museum, but also the community and region. Stay tuned for much more exciting news to come in the near future at Michigan Maritime Museum!
For more information about boat rides, upcoming events, classes, lectures, and hours of operation, visit michiganmaritimemuseum.org, or call (269) 637-8078.
Featured image courtesy of: Michigan Maritime Museum