Based on the success of last year’s event, the Mackinac Bridge Authority (MBA) will again start the 2019 Annual Bridge Walk from both St. Ignace and Mackinaw City, eliminating the need for busing and offering additional options for participants.
A video, posted on the MBA website at www.mackinacbridge.org/walk, explains the bridge walk schedule and the choices people will have whether they start from the north or south end of the bridge.
“Despite initial concerns people expressed about the big changes prior to the walk last year, after the event we heard so many supportive comments about the new arrangements,” said Kim Nowack, interim Executive Secretary of the MBA. “Overall the event went so smoothly that it made sense to continue those changes for this year’s walk.”
Walkers essentially have three main options, outlined in the video:
- Starting from either end of the bridge and walking toward the center, turning around at the midpoint and returning to the city they started from, where their transportation is located. The turnaround points will move toward the ends of the bridge beginning at 10 a.m., but walkers can walk at least a portion of the bridge if they start by 11:30 a.m.
- Walking the entire length of the bridge starting from either end. Those who choose this option must reach the midpoint before 10 a.m. or they will be turned back. Anyone who walks the entire bridge must arrange their own transportation back to the side they started once the bridge reopens to public traffic at noon.
- Crossing the bridge, starting from either end, and then turning around and walking back to the side they started from. In this option, walkers will need to cross the midpoint on their return trip by 10 a.m. or they will be turned back and need to find their own transportation back across the bridge after it reopens at noon.
The bridge will again be closed to public traffic during the 2019 walk, from 6:30 a.m. to noon on Labor Day, Sept. 2, based on recommendations from the Michigan State Police and U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Emergency vehicles will still be permitted to cross the bridge, but no public vehicles will be allowed until the walk concludes and participants are off the bridge.
As in 2018, because walkers can start from either end of the bridge when they arrive, there will be no buses transporting participants across the bridge.