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Ludington Sesquicentennial Ball, 6:00 p.m.

Celebrate Ludington’s 150th at Stearns Hotel; enjoy a dinner event with live music, historical plays, and dancing!

Location: Historic Stearns Hotel

6:00 pm Doors open

6:30 pm Program begins

The Mason County Historical Society is thrilled to announce its upcoming Sesquicentennial Ball, an evening of grandeur and entertainment, set to take place in the historic Stearns Motor Inn ballroom on Saturday, October 7. This event is a unique celebration of Ludington's rich history, but it also offers an unexpected twist as a short play, a "dramedy" titled "Ludington or Stearns? A City by Any Other Name," transports partygoers to the afterlife and an ethereal, astral plane.

In this 10-minute play, attendees will encounter the spirits of Justus Stearns, the visionary behind the 1903 Stearns Motel, and James Ludington, the namesake of the City of Ludington when it was chartered in 1873. Award-winning author and history professor, Mike Nagle, will portray Justus Stearns, the subject of Nagle's celebrated biography, "Justus S. Stearns: Michigan Pine King and Kentucky Coal Baron, 1845-1933." Playwright and actor Rick Plummer will bring the City's namesake, James Ludington, to life in a humorous look at these serious founding fathers of Ludington.

But that's not all; the evening also offers a delightful selection of signature drinks named in honor of Stearns and Ludington. Attendees can enjoy libations like the "Ludington Long-Island Tea" and the "Stearns Stinger." For those seeking a touch of local folklore, there's the chance to sip on a famously funny concoction inspired by the legendary axe-toting character, Ossawald Crumb, created by Stearns' son, R.L. Stearns.

To top off the evening's festivities, Dr. Rick Plummer, who plays the part of James Ludington in the play, will serve as the emcee, ensuring that the night unfolds seamlessly.

Adding to the allure of the evening, MCHS Board President James Jensen will present an engaging overview of the Stearns Hotel. For over 120 years, the Stearns Hotel has been an integral part of the history of the City of Ludington. As the City celebrates its sesquicentennial, appropriately at this historic hotel, James Jensen will offer the entertaining story of the hotel, the people who lived and worked there, and the many gatherings that have been held over the decades in its meeting rooms, ballroom, and lounges. Of course, the story would not be complete without a stop at the Ossawald Crumb Tap Room to listen to the music, dance, and perhaps enjoy one of Ossie's signature cocktails.

The Mason County Historical Society's Sesquicentennial Ball promises to be an unforgettable night of history, humor, and spirited fun. Don't miss this unique celebration of Ludington's heritage, where the past comes to life in a way you've never experienced before.

Tickets are $75 a person – Funds from this event go towards the preservation of Ludington and Mason County's History for future generations to enjoy!

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Behind-the-Scenes Tours

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