Weekend of May 18-19-20, 2018
The Zoo-de-Mackinac is a weekend of huge parties with great bands, one of the most scenic bicycle rides in the country, a lot of sunshine, views of the mighty Mackinac Bridge, and one magical island.
This is Not a Race!
The Zoo-de-Mackinac is a collection of outdoor enthusiasts (4,000 in 2014-16) who want to enjoy a little physical exercise together in one of the most beautiful areas in the state of Michigan. The bike ride starts Saturday morning at Boyne Highlands Resort and spans 51 miles along Lake Michigan on a paved road with very little automobile traffic. Riders pedal through rolling countryside and trillium covered forests, along sandy beaches, and are surrounded by breathtaking views of Lake Michigan from 400' high bluffs. We stop approximately half way, at a unique place called the Legs Inn for a leisurely lunch and to swap stories. The ride continues on to Mackinaw City, where Star Line Ferry boats have been chartered for the ride over to Mackinac Island. Once on the magical island, check into your hotel and stroll into town to forget the aches and pains from the day's ride. As the evening wears on, the island comes alive with The Gatehouse, Pink Pony, and Horns hosting post ride parties with incredible live bands!
$60 through May 6, 2017. $75 from May 7, 2017 through May 20, 2017. Entry fee includes the pre-ride party Friday night at the Zoo Bar at Boyne Highlands, luggage transportation to Mackinaw City on Saturday, lunch at the Legs Inn on Saturday, finish line party in Mackinaw City, round trip ferry transportation to and from Mackinac Island on Star Line Ferry and post-ride parties on Saturday afternoon at The Crossings and evening parties on the island.
REGISTRATION - 8:00 pm to midnight in the Lobby below Zoo Bar
KICK-OFF PARTY - 8:00 pm to 1:30 am in the Zoo Bar
REGISTRATION: 7:30 - 10:30am in the lobby below The Zoo Bar
RIDE STARTS: 7:30 - 10:30am at Boyne Highlands in the Ski Area Parking Lot
LUNCH: 10:30 - 2:00pm at Legs Inn
POST RIDE PARTY: 12Noon to 5:00 pm at The Crossings in Mackinaw City
PARTIES ON MACKINAC ISLAND
Friday Detailed Information
FRIDAY EVENING CARB LOADING: The key to making this a great weekend is to get started on the right foot Friday night. All you have to do is stop on your way up for a world famous Potato Burger at a little bar called the Railside Bar and Grill (formerly the Elmira Inn) in Elmira, Michigan (on C-32 between Gaylord and US-131). A truly delightful lady named Ma had run the place for over 25 years and sold it a few years ago. She specially designed the Potato Burger so it will give you lots of energy for Saturday's ride! Let's set the record again for the most Potato Burgers ever sold in a day. Stop in, order a burger, and raise a beer for Ma, who passed away in the fall of 2010. And don't forget to get your name on the Potato Burger record list.
FRIDAY NIGHT REGISTRATION: Friday night and Saturday morning registration are the only opportunities you will have to pick up your registration packet that includes your wristband, course map, lunch ticket and Star Line Ferry ticket as well as any pre-ordered Zoo-de-Mackinac merchandise. Limited quantities of Zoo-de-Mackinac merchandise will be for sale at Friday and Saturday registration if you did not pre-order. Friday night registration is open from 8:00 pm to midnight and is located in the lobby below the Zoo Bar at Boyne Highlands. Registration is also open Saturday morning from 7:30am to 10:30 am at the same location.
If you don't have a ZOO-DE-MACKINAC wristband, you will not get into the Zoo Bar party Friday night, will not have lunch at the Legs Inn, will not get into the post-ride party at The Crossings, will not get on the Zoo-De-Mackinac chartered Star Line Ferries to or from Mackinac Island and Mackinaw City between 7:30pm and 2am on Saturday night, or in the three best bars on Mackinac Island Saturday night. Moreover, the biker that forgets his wristband will be subject to heaps of ridicule and abuse from other participants and staff all weekend long.
FRIDAY NIGHT PARTY: For those of you who like to do things like normal, rational people, it is strongly recommend that you eat a good meal Friday night with lots of carbohydrates, and get a good night sleep. For the rest of you, get ready for an all out Zoo Bar summertime bash. We've rented out the Zoo Bar and hired the Aaron Vaughn Band to ensure an evening that will be reminiscent of those wild Saturday afternoons the Zoo Bar provides us with all ski season long. Don't miss our ridiculously fun big wheel race for charity in the rooms adjacent to The Zoo Bar!
See our HARBOR SPRINGS/PETOSKEY ACCOMMODATIONS page to find hotels for Friday night!
Saturday Detailed Information
SATURDAY PRE-RIDE BREAKFAST: From 6:00 to 10:30am Boyne will offer an awesome pre-ride breakfast buffet in the main dining rooms for a nominal cost. It's specially formulated so you can ride 100 miles, even though you'll only need enough energy for 51 miles!
SATURDAY MORNING REGISTRATION: Saturday morning registration will be open from 7:30 to 10:30 am in the lobby below The Zoo Bar. YOU MUST PICK UP YOUR REGISTRATION PACKET BY 10:30 am ON SATURDAY!!!
THE RIDE: Again, this year, like the last few years, we are not going to have an organized group start. Instead you can start whenever you wish, which will spread everyone out over the course. If you've never ridden the course or are not in as good shape as you'd like to be, start early (7:30 - 9:00 am). If you're in good shape or hung over, sleep in and start later (but no later than 10:30 am). The bicycling portion of the trip is approximately 51 miles in length, which will take the average rider six to seven hours of riding time, not including stops. The first half of the ride is the most scenic. Lakeshore Drive borders Lake Michigan and is one of the most scenic and breathtaking roads in the Lower Peninsula. National Geographic Traveler Magazine listed it as one of the top 50 scenic drives in the country! The views of Lake Michigan are truly spectacular. The terrain is rolling with some good challenging hills, and only one real big killer hill. Anyone in semi-decent shape shouldn't have any problems going the distance. There is a restaurant in Cross Village called the Legs Inn where we will stop for lunch. George and Kathy Smolak will serve us a hearty lunch between 10:30 am and 2:00 pm (lunch is included in your entry fee). For those of you who aren't up to riding 51 miles this would be a good starting point. It is a 25-mile trip from Legs Inn to Mackinaw City. After leaving Cross Village, the terrain flattens out, and there is a beautiful sandy beach at Sturgeon Bay 32 miles into the trip, where you can stop and cool off if it's hot. Then it's down the homestretch, with a magnificent view of the Mighty Mackinac Bridge to the huge post-ride party for beer, food and a band at The Crossings in Mackinaw City from 1:00 pm to 6:00 pm. More details to come! Any cars following along will be required to take a different route for the first half of the ride to ease congestion and increase safety. The automobile route will be outlined on the course map given out Saturday morning. The police will be enforcing this for the safety of the riders!
Shorter Option: For those of you who aren't up to riding 51 miles, the "Zoo-de-Legs" and "Legs-de-Mack" options are 25 miles each. The "Zoo-De-Legs" is the first half of the ride. Riders who only wish to do 25 miles can bike the beautiful Tunnel of Trees portion of the ride and get a lift back to their car with help from Big Bear Adventures at 1:00pm & 2:30pm. "Legs-de-Mack" half of the ride from Cross Village to Mackinaw City. These shuttles must be reserved in advanced and sell out quickly so don't delay!
See Big Bear Adventure's website for SHUTTLE OPTIONS,details, pricing and schedule
LUGGAGE: If you would like us to take your luggage to Mackinaw City (included in your entry fee) please bring your small bag to the U-HAUL truck at the registration area on Saturday morning and we will drive it up. Bags will be at the Star Line dock in Mackinaw City or on Mackinac Island at approximately 3:30 pm. You are responsible for and will have the choice of picking up your bag at the Star Line Ferry dock in Mackinaw City or on Mackinac Island. We are not responsible for any lost, stolen or damaged luggage. Unclaimed luggage will be held by the Star Line Ferry Company.
THE FERRY TO THE ISLAND: When you have finished the ride, enjoyed the post-ride party at The Crossings, and are ready to head over to Mackinac Island, you will take the Star Line Mackinac Island Ferry. The round trip ticket (included in your entry fee) includes transportation and parking all weekend if you need it. When you get to Mackinaw City, you can take any of the Star Line regularly scheduled ferries. If you don't want to take your bike over to the Island, Star Line Ferry has offered us the use of a convenient warehouse, where you can lock your bike up inside, and leave it overnight. Star Line Ferry personnel in Mackinaw City will direct you to the warehouse. Star Line will charge a special $5.00 round trip rate for participants who want to take their bike to the island, which you can pay for at the dock.
See the special STAR LINE FERRY SCHEDULE for Zoo-de-Mack participants only
See our MACKINAC ISLAND/MACKINAW CITY ACCOMODATIONS page to find hotels for Saturday night!
SATURDAY NIGHT FESTIVITIES: The best bars on the Island are The Gatehouse, Horns, and The Pink Pony and they are the places to be on Saturday night! It took a lot of negotiating, but the managers of these bars were able to cut a deal with some awesome bands to play for the night. This is the biggest night of the year for island nightlife. Bigger than the boat races!!
Sunday Detailed Information
In the past, Sunday has found most of us lounging around the Chippewa Hotel deck, wishing we didn't have to go to work on Monday. There is a great 8 mile bike ride, roller blade, or run around the island (if you're up for it) as well as some great mountain biking trails to take advantage of. If the weather is good, it will be tough to leave, with most people staying around until early evening.
SUNDAY TRANSPORTATION: Since 1992, Big Bear Adventures, Inc. has been the official Zoo-De-Mack provider of transportation shuttles with buses and trolleys for you and your luggage, and trailers for your bikes. They offer a number of transportation options to get you and your bike to your car.
See Big Bear Adventures website for SHUTTLE OPTIONS, details, pricing & schedule.
HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT ZOO-DE-MACK? SEE OUR FAQs FOR ANSWERS TO FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS.
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