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Hundreds Gather for Stone Skipping Competition on Mackinac Island

Promo Image: Hundreds Gather for Stone Skipping Competition on Mackinac Island

“A stone’s throw away," means a little more to some competitors on Mackinac Island.

Both amateurs and professionals took their best shot at the 49th Annual International Stone Skipping Competition.

Every Fourth of July the event brings hundreds to the sands of Windermere Beach.

9&10’s Aaron Parseghian takes you there for a closer look at this pastime, turned annual tournament.

“The atmosphere, the goofiness, the having fun, the beautiful views, this is just a lot of fun,” said Amateur Division Winner Quinn McNutt.

From little tikes, to Lieutenant Governors, to league champions. Hundreds on Mackinac Island are trying to see who can skip their stone the best.

The object of the competition is simple, pick up a few rocks you like, give them a toss, and then count the number of skips

Competitors are divided by amateur and professional. Most are skipping for fun, but some end up with trophies.

“Usually I’m just competing against my family and I won against them last year, but this year I won it all so that was kind of exciting,’ said McNutt.

The pros say there’s more to it than just simply throwing.

“Water is really iffy here, you have to throw in the waves sometime, you don’t get a whole lot of flat water, so there is a little bit of strategy,” explained Pro Division Winner Russ Byars.

A pastime now a budding sport.

“I started skipping stones when I was like 8 or 9 years old. It’s cool to see the sport just come alive, see more people come out here year after year,” said Guinness World Record Holder Maxwell Steiner

A sport that keeps people coming back.

“Its not unusual for me to come and watch. Skipping stones is really a pure Michigan thing. I remember doing that with my dad and my grandpa, it really harkens back to those days growing up and it’s just a really special thing to do with my son,” said Lt. Gov. Brian Calley.