Ludington Prepares For Busiest Night Of The Year

The biggest party on the lakeshore may be found in Ludington on Tuesday where they are hosting their ball drop at the corner of Ludington and James Street for the 11th year.

It’s windy and it’s snowing but it’s also Michigan. Ludington is going to put up with this weather and they are not going to let it slow down more than 10,000 people hitting the main square in town.

“The feeling, the vibe that everyone has, it’s second to none,” says Jennifer Tooman, communications manager for Downtown Ludington, “There’s so many people and the crowd is huge and everybody’s screaming and smiling and having a great time.”

It’s an event that brings all of downtown together. Not only will the streets be closed down but the stores and shops that line them will stay open super late and provide warming centers for those that need a little reprieve from the cold weather.

“It’s really exciting,” says Cheryl Freeman, co-owner of All Occasions Events and Floral, “It’s our third year to do the warming center and allow people to come in from the cold and warm up get a little free hot chocolate and such.”

“I think it’s just a really good example of small-town America coming together to do a great thing,” says Brad Reed, co-owner of Todd and Brad Reed Photography.

Of course not everyone is going inside just to warm up. Some people will be heading inside to drink and for some bars, this is the biggest day of the year.

“It’s just one of those days I think everyone’s excited,” says Kelly Savich, manager of Barley & Rye, “It’s the new year. There’s new energy. It’s just a great vibe and everyone likes to gather around and do the ball drop.”

Anytime tonight in Ludington, if you have a few too many drinks you can get a free ride from the mass transit system and possibly have your car towed home for free as well.

“In the 11 years we’ve had the ball drop, there haven’t been any alcohol related accidents that evening,” says Tooman, “Which is always our goal, to keep everyone safe.”

If you don’t want your car towed home for you, you can leave it downtown. The city says they are not ticketing people who choose to leave their car and get a safe ride home.