September 3, 2021 -- The 2021 Mackinac Bridge Walk on Labor Day, Sept. 6, is just days away, and final preparations are under way.
"Whether your travels will take you across the Mackinac Bridge, or you plan to join in the annual bridge walk, we want to make sure everyone has the information they need for a safe and enjoyable Labor Day holiday," said Mackinac Bridge Authority (MBA) Bridge Director Kim Nowack.
The bridge will again be closed to public traffic during the 2021 walk, from 6:30 a.m. to noon, 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.
"We strongly urge everyone who is traveling in the Straits area on Monday to make their plans around this scheduled closure," Nowack said. "Traffic backups are frustrating for everyone, so we ask that you either cross the bridge prior to 6:30 a.m. or time your trip to arrive at the bridge after noon."
Based on the success of the 2018 and 2019 events, the MBA will again start the 2021 Annual Bridge Walk from both St. Ignace and Mackinaw City, which eliminates the need for busing and offers additional options for participants. The bridge walk was cancelled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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 ends of the bridge.
Walkers essentially have three main options, outlined in the video:
For participant health and safety, the MBA urges participants to follow CDC recommendations that suggest you wear a mask in crowded outdoor settings.
People who are interested in receiving text messages about bridge closures, including closure information for the Annual Bridge Walk, can sign up for Mackinac County 911's RAVE Alert System updates. There is no cost to receive these updates, aside from any texting fees from the participant's mobile coverage plan. To opt into this text alert system:
"Welcome to Mac Bridge. Reply STOP MacBridge to Cancel. MSG & Data Rates May Apply MSG Frequency Varies."
The bridge walk has been an annual event since 1958, with the exception of 2020. The 2021 walk will be the 63rd event. Between 25,000 and 30,000 people have participated in recent years.