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'We're counting down the days'; The S.S. Badger has begun taking reservations for this season

Posted at 5:17 PM, Mar 26, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-27 01:29:34-04

MANITOWOC (NBC 26) — We are less than two months from when the S.S. badger normally begins its season. Here’s the latest update on one of the Lakeshore's best features.

  • The Lake Michigan Carferry has began accepting reservation for the S.S. Badger for as early as June 14th.
  • The Carferry says that still plan to begin the Badger's season in mid-May but are not certain due to construction.
  • Manitowoc Director of Tourism, Courtney Hansen says that this is the best time for Manitowoc to show off it's strengths.

Manitowoc Director of Tourism Courtney Hansen cannot wait for the Badger's return.
"We're counting down the days,” Hansen said. “It's a really great time for Manitowoc to show off and we definitely thrive during the sailing season months."

When that season begins is still unknown, but Lake Michigan Carferry says they've already started selling reservations for as early as June 14th.

The company says they are aiming for a mid-May return. Due to construction on the broken Ludington dock that shut the Badger down last season, they do not have a definite schedule yet.

"The entire city of Manitowoc is extremely excited,” said Hansen.

Especially Dan Diedrichs, owner of Pizza Garden. A restaurant just down the road from the Badger's dock.

"Very excited. Very excited to get it back here,” Diedrichs said. “There's a lot of talk about it."

The badger can bring up to 600 people per day and Dan says it is the best form of advertising for his restaurant, but also all of the other local businesses.

"Get them some good pizza and maybe a beer or two, and then send them back home so they can tell everybody about it,” said Diedrichs.

A grand return for the Badger for a community that misses their beloved steamship.

"Sometimes you don't know until it's gone, what it feels like,” Diedrichs said.

As the season approaches, Courtney tells me the ship still needs season workers. Interviews with be held on April 6th at the ship's ticket office.