Who is taking the SS Badger to TDIFest?

VeeDubTDI

Good Ol' Boy, TDIClub Enthusiast
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Jul 2, 2000
Location
Springfield, VA
TDI
‘18 Tesla Model 3D+, ‘14 Cadillac ELR, ‘13 Fiat 500e
The SS Badger is the only coal-fired steam ship operating on the great lakes, and serves as a car ferry between Ludington, Michigan and Manitowoc, Wisconsin. The trip is approximately 4 hours and saves travelers from the east from having to go through Chicago.

http://www.ssbadger.com/

Fares: http://www.ssbadger.com/schedule-fares/





Here are a couple of great videos of the SS Badger in action...

Behind the scenes (including engine room controls): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DhA5zctDScI

Captain Hobbs (RIP) bringing the Badger into Ludington: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJQDwGTF2Ls

Captain Curtis bringing the Badger into Manitowoc: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rpwBTt5I-gw

So let's get some discussion going on this. I plan on taking the Badger on the way to Fest, and driving through the upper peninsula of Michigan on the way back home. :cool:

SS Badger Schedule:
Code:
Summer: June 05 - September 11

Depart Ludington	/ Arrive Manitowoc
8:30 AM (ET)	11:30 AM (CT)
8:30 PM (ET) **	11:30 PM (CT)

Depart Manitowoc / Arrive Ludington
1:30 PM (CT)	6:30 PM (ET)
1:00 AM (CT) ***	6:00 AM (ET)

Crossing time: 4 Hours
Ludington is Eastern Time (ET) | Manitowoc is Central Time (CT)
**No 8:30PM crossing on 6/11, 7/4, 9/3, 9/4
***No 1:00AM crossings on 6/12, 7/5, 9/4 or 9/5

10% discount
Applies to passenger and vehicle fares traveling one way or round trip using the 8:30 PM (ET) or the 1:00 AM (CT) departures. (Cannot be combined with any other discount program.)

Staterooms $49 each way!
Ask for details while making your reservation.

No hassles, no change fees!
If less than 7 days, you only forfeit a $25 deposit.
 
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251

TDI Owner/Operator
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May 11, 2002
Location
NW IN
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2015 Passat TDI SEL
I used the SS Badger both ways to/from the 2005 TDI Fest in Lake Mills, WI. It was an enjoyable experience!

Word to the wise - make your reservations early as I understand the SS Badger is fully booked for most sailings.
 

john.jackson9213

Top Post Dawg
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Mar 14, 2007
Location
Miramar, Ca. (Think Top Gun)
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1996 B4V
If I read the fare correctly: 1 car + 2 adults = $177 one way?

And this saves how many miles driving? How much time does it take to drive that many miles thru Chicago?

Just wondering because I may be heading east after the TDIFest.
 

VeeDubTDI

Good Ol' Boy, TDIClub Enthusiast
Joined
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Location
Springfield, VA
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If I read the fare correctly: 1 car + 2 adults = $177 one way?

And this saves how many miles driving? How much time does it take to drive that many miles thru Chicago?

Just wondering because I may be heading east after the TDIFest.
For me, coming from DC, the Badger only saves 134.2 miles of driving. However, driving from Ludington, MI to Manitowoc, WI is 419 miles via the southern route and 519 miles via the northern route.

Time saving depends entirely on what time of day you're driving and where you're leaving from. At the end of the day, this is the only coal-fired steam ship operating in North America and it's designated as a historic landmark. Fares are expensive, but the Badger is a lot more than a boring old car ferry. :)
 

MichaelB

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2009
Location
SE Wisconsin
TDI
2014 Passat SE DSG
It's not always the destination, it's the journey. Sometimes you just need to relax, sit back and enjoy the ride.
 
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NarfBLAST

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Mar 3, 2002
Location
Waterdown, Ontario, Canada
TDI
2001 Golf 5MT
Someone should contact them and see if we can arrange a TDIClub group discount... :rolleyes:
I was thinking that, but I thought it might be hard to get 15 people to agree on a particular crossing. That would be super cool though!

I have pretty much decided to just drive a northern route because I can't seem to work the boat into my schedule and it takes me away from a more scenic route.

I could be swayed if there were a big group meeting at the Luddington dock to look forward to? I guess the most logical time to meet would be the Friday at 7am eastern time (ET) to make sure we all get nicely lined up for the 8:30am (ET) departure which arrives in Manitowoc four hours later at 11:30am central time (CT) at which point we all start or engines and cruise directly to the The Lodge at Leathem Smith, Sturgeon Bay, WI‎ arriving around 1pm (CT) on the Friday.

That would be cool, but I am not volunteering to organize it! Like I said, I've decided to drive the scenic route, but I could be swayed. I could always take the scenic route on the way back... decisions!
 
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VeeDubTDI

Good Ol' Boy, TDIClub Enthusiast
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‘18 Tesla Model 3D+, ‘14 Cadillac ELR, ‘13 Fiat 500e
I was thinking that, but I thought it might be hard to get 15 people to agree on a particular crossing. That would be super cool though!

I have pretty much decided to just drive a northern route because I can't seem to work the boat into my schedule and it takes me away from a more scenic route.

I could be swayed if there were a big group meeting at the Luddington dock to look forward to? I guess the most logical time to meet would be the Friday at 7am eastern time (ET) to make sure we all get nicely lined up for the 8:30am (ET) departure which arrives in Manitowoc four hours later at 11:30am central time (CT) at which point we all start or engines and cruise directly to the The Lodge at Leathem Smith, Sturgeon Bay, WI‎ arriving around 1pm (CT) on the Friday.

That would be cool, but I am not volunteering to organize it! Like I said, I've decided to drive the scenic route, but I could be swayed. I could always take the scenic route on the way back... decisions!
Your suggestion of the Friday morning crossing is good, although I'll probably be arriving on Wednesday or Thursday, so I'll miss out on a group ferry ride. Just be aware that hotel check-in starts at 3pm, and event check-in starts at 5pm. Fortunately, there is plenty to do in town, so you won't be bored.

If enough people are interested in a Friday morning crossing, I'll see if I can get a group discount setup. That said, for anyone interested in that, please post here soon so that we can get things rolling.
 
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VeeDubTDI

Good Ol' Boy, TDIClub Enthusiast
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I just called the reservations department to discuss group pricing. Currently, it is as follows...

10 people or more
Cars: $59 each
Adult: $52.80 each
Senior: $49.60 each

If we get closer to 60 people, we can negotiate a lower rate with them. Since the amount saved is only $6.20 per person for adults, I don't think the logistical effort for TDIFest staff to organize a single-purchase group ticket is worth it. If someone else has the time and is willing to tackle this, that's fine, and we'll work with you to help make it happen.
 

VeeDubTDI

Good Ol' Boy, TDIClub Enthusiast
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Location
Springfield, VA
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The 60 person+ rate is mainly for a tour bus. Not 30 cars.
Correct. I asked about that, and as it was explained to me by the nice lady on the phone, they don't offer group discounts for vehicles, and they would still be looking for that total number of people (or close to it), even though we wouldn't be arriving on a tour bus. She indicated that 50 people would be a point at which they start considering the tour group rate if we were to drive our own vehicles.

I'm certainly willing to have that conversation with them, but I need an indication from Fest attendees that we will actually have close to that many people interested in the Friday morning crossing.
 

1854sailor

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Location
Baltimore, MD and Westerly, RI
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I just called the reservations department to discuss group pricing. Currently, it is as follows...

10 people or more
Cars: $59 each
Adult: $52.80 each
Senior: $49.60 each

If we get closer to 60 people, we can negotiate a lower rate with them. Since the amount saved is only $6.20 per person for adults, I don't think the logistical effort for TDIFest staff to organize a single-purchase group ticket is worth it. If someone else has the time and is willing to tackle this, that's fine, and we'll work with you to help make it happen.
Does the "Car" include the driver and the passengers are extra?
 

cevans

TDIClub Enthusiast, TDI Parts Ninja Vendor , w/Bus
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This looks great, I'm in!
 

VeeDubTDI

Good Ol' Boy, TDIClub Enthusiast
Joined
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MichaelB is correct - a car does not include passengers. Each person is charged as a unique passenger in addition to the car.
 

jasonTDI

TDI GURU Vendor , w/Business number
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The other option is the high speed ferry from Muskegon, MI to the port of Milwaukee. It's a few hours further south and drops you in downtown Milwaukee. Then I43 strait north to Door County. Something different and its a cool jet drive powered catamaran. 60-70mph. Save time? not really but its an experience. Chicago isn't that bad. All new roads....Take the I90 Skyway and it is little used. $4.50 toll. Beautiful skyline of Chicago can be seen.
 

Lug_Nut

TDIClub Enthusiast, Pre-Forum Veteran Member
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Live by the sword, die by the sword

Ferry miles shouldn't count as GPS based "driven" miles towards any best fuel economy consideration.
Driving the lake circumference as an alternative shouldn't 'increase' your distance from home to the fest for any long distance award consideration either.
 

VeeDubTDI

Good Ol' Boy, TDIClub Enthusiast
Joined
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Location
Springfield, VA
TDI
‘18 Tesla Model 3D+, ‘14 Cadillac ELR, ‘13 Fiat 500e
The other option is the high speed ferry from Muskegon, MI to the port of Milwaukee. It's a few hours further south and drops you in downtown Milwaukee. Then I43 strait north to Door County. Something different and its a cool jet drive powered catamaran. 60-70mph. Save time? not really but its an experience. Chicago isn't that bad. All new roads....Take the I90 Skyway and it is little used. $4.50 toll. Beautiful skyline of Chicago can be seen.
Nice suggestion! High speed catamarans are a blast. :cool:
 

dpowell357

Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2016
Location
Wisconsin
TDI
1999.5 Jetta
I live in Manitowoc and highly recommend the Badger if you need to cross the pond. If you do come through here, I suggest taking state hwy. 42 to Sturgeon Bay. It's a really nice, scenic drive that takes you through historic towns on the way.
 

VeeDubTDI

Good Ol' Boy, TDIClub Enthusiast
Joined
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Location
Springfield, VA
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‘18 Tesla Model 3D+, ‘14 Cadillac ELR, ‘13 Fiat 500e
I live in Manitowoc and highly recommend the Badger if you need to cross the pond. If you do come through here, I suggest taking state hwy. 42 to Sturgeon Bay. It's a really nice, scenic drive that takes you through historic towns on the way.
Excellent! Thanks for the tip. :cool:

I hope you can make it to TDIFest.
 

leicaman

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Dec 24, 2004
Location
Sheboygan, Wisconsin
TDI
2015 Golf TDI SE, 2005 TDI GLS, RIP
I am looking forward to going to the fest. For me it is a fairly short drive from Sheboygan to Sturgeon Bay. This week, I will get the registration out of the way, if things go as planned for me. I don't know what day I will be there yet.
 

bobt2382

Veteran Member - TDIClub Contributor
Joined
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Location
NJ
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2010 CW GOLF 4DR 6MT TDI
Completed my reservation for Thursday 8:30am crossing into Manitowoc. Looking forward to the trip. Its been a while since I've been on a ship.
 

VeeDubTDI

Good Ol' Boy, TDIClub Enthusiast
Joined
Jul 2, 2000
Location
Springfield, VA
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‘18 Tesla Model 3D+, ‘14 Cadillac ELR, ‘13 Fiat 500e
I'm thinking about taking the Wednesday morning trip on the Badger. I guess I should book soon before it sells out.
 

bobt2382

Veteran Member - TDIClub Contributor
Joined
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Location
NJ
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I did it online. They sent a confirmation immediately.
 
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