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This year’s sacrifice to the Ice God Ullr was a bit different than in the past. In previous years, islanders would build a papier mâché or wooden animal as a sacrifice to please Ullr. The theme this year was the perfect sacrifice for 2020 as a giant Covid germ ball lit up the night sky. “The Germ Burn,” put on by Billy Market and the Miller Boat Line crew, was a fitting goodbye to 2020 as we welcome change, health and (hopefully) ice in 2021.

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The “Burn the Germ” Covid ball was built in Miller Boat Lines’ workshop near the downtown dock. Here it is floating before the burn. -Photo by Billy Market

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A close up of the germ ball burning in the harbor. -Photo by Bobbi Dobos

A Few Thoughts for the New Year

The future is looking bright as we enter the New Year. Now that there are vaccines that combat Covid-19, there is hope that Put-in-Bay may be able to return to business as usual. We may still be wearing masks and social distancing as the projected herd immunity takes hold, but islanders, seasonal workers, visitors who are protected will certainly feel better about working at and going to the shops, attractions, bars and restaurants on the island when the new season starts.

In the meantime, keep those masks on and social distance. You don’t want to be that one last casualty just as the war against Covid is finally being won.

We want to acknowledge the hard work being done by those volunteers who stepped up to work on the problems posed by the rentals of hundreds of golf carts on the island. The group faces an uphill battle trying to get all the golf cart companies to get onboard with all the suggestions for changes. It may also be nearly impossible to get new legislation from the Village seeing as four out of six Council members can’t vote on golf cart legislation due to conflicts of interest.

Last season was probably the best weather season for visiting the island and boating that we’ve seen in years. Sadly, due to Covid, fewer people were in and around the islands to enjoy it. Let’s hope the weather is just as good as last season and that there are more people around to enjoy all the fun.

From what the water level in Lake Erie was looking like on January 1st, we’re going to go out on a limb and predict considerably lower levels this coming summer.

We’re especially looking forward this spring to the arrival of Miller Boat Line’s new ferry, the M/V Mary Ann Market. Once complete, the ferry will set sail from the shipyard in Superior, Wisconsin, on Lake Superior through the locks at Sault Ste. Marie, down Lake Huron and the St. Clair River into Lake St. Clair, then down the Detroit River and into Lake Erie.
Please stay safe as you cheer in the New Year!