Tag Archives: International Bridge

Beer steins & running shoes: It’s a Sault Ste. Marie Saturday

I have a confession to make. I have never thought of myself as athletic.

What does my confession have to do with someone flinging a beer keg? Easy. I have never thought of myself as athletic…until I discovered that on Sept. 26 in Sault Ste. Marie, competitive sports involve running a half marathon, sprinting over a bridge, walking a 5K, holding a beer stein for a lengthy period, pulling a fire truck, and flinging a beer keg. I am confident I can master at least one of these competitions.

On Sept. 26, two great events occur on the same day in our fair city. Sault International Festival of Races dominates the morning hours, while Oktoberfest takes the reigns in the afternoon and evening.

Truth be told, I am in awe of those who have run the Half Marathon and the 6.6 mile Bridge Run over the past five years since the event was launched. It grows each year in popularity which makes perfect sense, considering it has to be the most scenic race in all of Michigan. During your morning run, cross the International Bridge and sneak a bird’s-eye glimpse of the Soo Locks below.

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And for those who aren’t runners, there’s even a 5K Run/Walk. It doesn’t cross the bridge but it does take a scenic path through Downtown Sault Ste. Marie.

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Since Oktoberfest happenings don’t begin until the afternoon, you over-achievers can participate in all events, including the Keg Toss, Fire Truck Pull, Tug of War, and more.

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You can even sign up for the Samuel Adams Beer Stein Challenge at the Alpha Bar, where you’ll have to hold a beer stein in front of you in a test of both endurance (how long can you hold it?) and discipline (how long can you go without drinking it?) at this first-time event. Lacking a photo, I invite you to check out the following video from Cincinnati and start conditioning your arm TODAY to get ready for the Soo event.

The Alpha isn’t the only business offering special events during Oktoberfest. And, like any good festival, there are awesomely-autumn vendor booths, tasty fair food and live entertainment – all found in Downtown Sault Ste. Marie.

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Hoisting a beer. Walking a beautiful downtown. Joining in a tug of war. Visiting vendor booths while listing to live music and munching on good eats. These are all on the docket, which is why I’m retracting my confession. I AM athletic and I will give all takers a run for their money in at least one of these events. Can you guess which one?

See you in Sault Ste. Marie!

Oh Canada! Crossing the Border at Sault Ste. Marie

There’s something exciting about exploring another country, which makes the Sault Ste. Marie area a traveler’s paradise. It’s a short ride across a beautiful bridge to a foreign land and all the intrigue that comes with it. Visitors will enjoy the Agawa Canyon Tour Train, the hockey culture, and the hustle and bustle of the city we share our name with on the northern side of the border.

courtesy of MDOT

courtesy of MDOT

Crossing the international border does require some planning. There are a variety of documents that will meet the requirements of U.S. Customs and Immigration – for most people, it will be a passport but other options also exist. When entering Canada, officials will ask to see a passport (or other approved documentation), inquire about your purpose for visiting Canada and ask a few basic questions. Upon return to the U.S., travelers must show passport (or other approved documentation) and will be asked a few questions (where do you live? what did you purchase? how long were you in Canada?) before being allowed to re-enter the U.S.

Although it may sound like a hassle – it really isn’t. Over two million crossings occur each year, including trips made by hundreds of thousands of visitors making their first trek across the nearly three-mile span.

Wait times used to be a mystery to travelers, but no more. Want to see how long you might wait on the bridge at a given time? Visit the International Bridge website to view webcams updated every 15 minutes and a description of current wait times at both the U.S. and Canadian crossing.

For more information on Sault Ste. Marie day trips and activities visit Sault Ste Marie.