Lakeshore and Travel & Tourism

City wins title of 'Best Coastal Small Town' in US

March 20, 2015
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Lakeshore city ranks as nation's No. 1 'summer weekend escape'
Oval Beach in Saugatuck is rated one of the best beaches in world and U.S. Photo via fb.com

While the West Michigan lakeshore consists of many great small towns, one continues to stand out to visitors and residents alike.

Saugatuck is No. 1

Saugatuck was voted the “Best Coastal Small Town” in a nationwide poll of readers by USA Today’s 10Best.

Voting took place between Feb. 16 and March 16.

This is the second time Saugatuck has taken top honors in a poll by USA Today. In 2014, the community was voted the "Best Weekend Getaway in the USA."

Saugatuck was the only Midwest destination and the only fresh water coastal community to be nominated for the competition by a panel of professional travel writers selected by USA Today.

“This is the highest national honor our community has received, and we are grateful to the editors of USA Today for nominating Saugatuck to compete among such a prestigious list of prominent coastal destinations,” said Felicia Fairchild, executive director, Saugatuck-Douglas Visitors Bureau.

The win emphasizes the attention Saugatuck and other Michigan freshwater coastline towns are gaining from visitors on a national level.

“From the charming downtown to award-winning Oval Beach, there is so much for visitors to see and do," said David West, VP of Travel Michigan, part of the Michigan Economic Development Corp.

Voter support

Fairchild gives credit for the victory to all the Saugatuck fans who took time to vote.

Fairchild said Saugatuck received support from thousands of enthusiastic fans and customers throughout the U.S. and abroad, plus many organizations, the local media, Gov. Rick Snyder and the “Pure Michigan” team.

The small West Michigan community soared from 20th place into first place during the first week of the competition and managed to hold its lead through “several heart-pounding encounters with determined competitors,” according to Fairchild.

Victory party

Plans are underway to sponsor a town-wide victory party for everyone who voted for Saugatuck.

The celebration is being scheduled for the weekend after Labor Day.

Details will be made available on the city’s Facebook page and visitor bureau’s website

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