Brewers and beer lovers are gathering at Ludington’s Rotary Park August 20 for the largest Suds on the Shore Craft Beer & Wine Festival yet. This year, the eighth annual Northern Michigan event is welcoming 55 participating breweries, wineries, cideries and meaderies from across the state and country for an afternoon with friends, family and the best drinks the area has to offer. (See the full list of who’s coming here.)

Suds on the Shore has maintained the quality of old beer festivals throughout its growth in the rapidly increasing popularity of the craft beer industry,” says Andy Thomas of Starving Artist Brewing Co. in Ludington. “Short lines and one-on-one time with brewers and fans are qualities seldom found these days. Cheers to the board, staff, sponsors, and volunteers for one of the best-run beer fests in the state!”

For $25 in advance or $30 at the door, attendees receive event entry, eight drink tokens and a souvenir glass for tasting one of the more than 100 samples available. Proceeds from the event go to United Way of Mason County who will distribute the money to local non-profit organizations working to help children and families to be financially stable and healthy.

We are so grateful for an incredible community that really puts their all into putting this event on,” says Brooke Siems with United Way of Mason County. “We have over 130 volunteers signed up and an amazing group of committee members that work hard all year.”

Suds on the Shore

Photo by Sue Brown Photography

Before heading over to Suds on the Shore, here are a few rules and tips from Brooke to help you plan for the afternoon. Here’s what to expect:

What will visitors experience? “Our festival offers a variety of beverages that our guests may not be able to buy in stores locally. This gives everyone the opportunity to spend a day outside trying out new flavors and tastes all while experiencing a sense of comradery in a fun and relaxing atmosphere.”

Tips for first-timers? “This is a rain or shine event, so if it looks like rain may be in the forecast bring an umbrella and a raincoat. All the vendors will be housed under enormous tents.”

  • Buy your tickets in advance at The Mitten Bar, Jamesport Brewery or PM Expeditions.
  • Bring your ID, no one under 21 will be permitted into the festival. That means no strollers, no children, no babies.
  • You are welcome to bring camp chairs and picnic blankets to sit back and relax in the large grassy open area.

Food vendors on-site? “This year we are happy to include Lakeside Wiener Wagon and BBQ as our exclusive food vendor. Lakeside Wiener Wagon & BBQ is a Ludington-based food truck that specializes in serving specialty hot dogs and smoked pulled pork. They serve hot dogs made at local, award-winning Sanders Meats in Custer, Michigan, on fresh buns made daily. Their dogs range from chili dogs made with homemade chili and shredded cheddar cheese to Mexican street corn inspired dogs with grilled corn, garlic mayo, Parmesan cheese and chili powder. Their pulled pork is smoked on their custom built smoker with local hardwoods and hand pulled, served with their house made BBQ sauce and topped off with their homemade coleslaw.”

Suds on the Shore runs from 1 to 7 p.m. at Ludington’s Rotary Park (formerly Ludington City Park). View a map and get directions here.

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Photo(s) by Sue Brown