#BookDirect – Learn how to save when traveling!

Are you overpaying by 5% to 20% every time you travel?

Join Island Club Rentals, Put-in-Bay Condos, and the rest of the vacation rental industry for #BookDirect Day on February 7th, 2019. It’s time to get your summer vacation plans in order and join the movement to make a FEE-FREE vacation rental booking. Read more to discover why it is always less expensive to book direct with your lodging

In recent years, there has been a huge growth of online listing and travel sites (such as AirBNB, VRBO, HomeAway, FlipKey, TripAdvisor, and Booking.com) who are inserting themselves between you – the guest – and us, the vacation rental manager. The industry term for the online middlemen is “Online Travel Agency” (OTA). There are key differences.


1- Did you know that Airbnb, Booking.com, VRBO, HomeAway and TripAdvisor can add hundreds of dollars of fees to your booking total? That’s how they make their profit!

2- Do you want to know if there is a propane grill, jet ski rental, 24/7 taxi service, a grocery store close by? The big OTAs don’t live on Put-in-Bay so they can’t tell you!

#BookDirect to get the best price and advice!

3- Is there a concert coming up at Put-in-Bay? What kids’ events are happening during your reservation period? Once again, the big OTAs don’t know the area and don’t have important information!

“The Island Club office always puts me in the best house each summer for my family. This will be our fifth year in a row returning.” -Liz R. (Columbus, OH)

4- Are there any special offers available or multi-night discounts? The answer is yes, but the big OTAs will never tell you that!


A guest is more likely to have a better vacation experience if they #bookdirect. Not only will the best price be guaranteed but guests are also likely to find the best special offers, the most flexibility, and the most informative communication if they book directly with the Island Club or Put-in-Bay Condos.

Put-in-Bay Things to Do Top 10

Put-in-Bay Ohio has so many great attractions.  High energy fun like parasailing to more relaxing time spent sipping on some island wine.  Regardless, there truly is something for everyone.  We’ve come up with the 10 Best Things to Do on Put in Bay.  Do you have a suggestion for the list?  Feel free to share your thoughts.

Here’s our Top Then Things to Do on Put-in-Bay:

10. Take a Taxi

Island Club Taxi

This may not seem like a thing to do.  Think again! There are countless stories of fun times had on Put-in-Bay Taxis.  Furthermore, sharing the ride with others will make new friends fast!  Furthermore, the Best Taxi Service on Put-in-Bay is Island Club Taxi.  Their drivers are fun, personable and make sure you have fun.  So, look for them in the white vans with palm trees or call 419-285-5466.

9. Rent a Kayak

Put-in-Bay Kayaks

Rent a kayak from Kayak the Bay.  So, take in the incredible vantage point from on top of Lake Erie.  Breath taking views of Perry’s Monument and the downtown Put-in-Bay Harbor are incredible.  Also, see the famous Benson Ford Ship House, once owned by the Henry Ford Family.

8. Take a Hike

Take a Hike on Put-in-Bay

The beautiful natural setting of Put-in-Bay cannot be overlooked.  So, take a leisurely walk at one of the many nature preserves.  The Scheef Point Preserve, pictured above, offers a gorgeous lakefront setting.  Also, groomed trails greet guests with cozy benches along the way.

7. Jet Ski on Lake Erie

Put-in-Bay Jet Ski

Rip across the water on a Jet Ski.  Then, feel the mist of Lake Erie while taking in the scenery.  Put-in-Bay Watercraft Rental has jet skis, power boats and kayaks for rent.  So, find them near South Bass Island State Park for some water filled fun!

6. Eat Local

Boardwalk Put-in-Bay

With so many things to do, an appetite will surely surface.  Put-in-Bay has only one national chain dining option on the island.  Otherwise, the rest are unique to the island.  So, grab a bowl of Lobster Bisque at the Boardwalk Restaurant.  Oh, so good!

5. Go Parasailing

Put-in-Bay Parasailing

Strap in for an unforgettable ride.  Put-in-Bay Parasailing has been providing service to the island since the early 1990’s.  Float among the clouds taking in amazing views of Perry’s Monument.

4. Drink Island Wine

Put-in-Bay Winery

Get a real taste of the islands.  Grape growing and wine making have been a part of Putin Bay since the islands humble beginnings.  Furthermore,  Heineman’s Winery has been doing so since 1888.  So, stop in for their signature selection: Pink Catawba.  Sweet and fruity, the taste is pure Summer!

3. Take a Bi-Plane Ride

Bi-Plane Put-in-Bay

Planes have been a part of the island for generations.  This lifeline provides transportation in the Winter months.  So, see the island from far above with a ride with a Put-in-Bay Bi-Plane.  Take in spectacular views of the Lake Erie Islands.

2. Rent a Golf Cart

Put-in-Bay Golf Cart

One of the most striking things about Put in-Bay is golf carts!  They seem to be everywhere and they are.  So, renting a golf cart is the best way to see all of the island.  Put-in-Bay Golf Cart Depot has you covered downtown, and Island Club Golf Cart Rentals has rentals onsite for guests.

1. Relax


There certainly is something special about the island of Put-in-Bay.  Worries seem to flee and enjoyment ensues when the clock is set to island time.  So, if you haven’t experienced a feeling quite like this, what are you waiting for?  Put your mind at ease and set course for PIB!

Thanks for Reading!

We hope you’ve enjoyed the Put-in-Bay Things to Do Top 10.  Please, stay tuned for more great lists like this!  Also, your suggestions are encouraged.  What do you want to hear more about?  Tell us!  Cheers, see you at the Bay!

Progressive Cleveland Boat Show

January 17 – 21, 2019 at the I-X Center in Cleveland

A Lake Erie tradition for over 60 years, the Progressive Cleveland Boat Show is where you can experience your summer fun to come! Formerly called “the Mid-America Boat Show”, today’s Cleveland Boat Show reflects the excitement and growth of our great North Coast Ohio cities along our beautiful Great Lake Erie.

Crews Nest

One of the most popular parts of the show is Put-in-Bay night. Put-in-Bay Night features live music from island entertainers such as Ray Fogg and Westside Steve and will be Thursday, January 17. Come join us for some lobster bisque (courtesy of the Boardwalk), and a few beverages in the “mobile Round House Bar”.

Fishing, sailing, cruising, jet-skiing, or wakeboarding… the Boat Show has something for you! The Progressive Cleveland Boat Show has boats of all shapes and sizes in the 2019 show!

Mid-America Boat Show

Show Dates and Times

Thursday, January 17: Noon – 9 PM [aka Put-in-Bay night]
Friday, January 18: Noon – 9 PM
Saturday, January 19: 10 AM – 9 PM
Sunday, January 20: 10 AM – 6 PM
Monday, January 21: 10 AM – 5 PM

Tickets are on sale now. Visit www.clevelandboatshow.com to purchase tickets to the show. The show is located at I-X Center Dr, Cleveland, OH 44135, United States

South Bass Island and the War of 1812

South Bass Island (also known as Put-in-Bay) played an important part in our country’s development. According to many historians, events that occurred on Put-in-Bay were responsible for America’s survival. If American forces didn’t prevail at the Battle of Lake Erie during the War of 1812, our country might not even exist today, and people wouldn’t be able to stay at the fine Put-in-Bay resort hotels and Home Rentals.

Put-in-Bay and the Second War of Independence

Researchers often refer to the War of 1812 as the Second War of Independence. The United States and the British battled for two years and eight months. The conflict eventually ended in a stalemate. You may be wondering, “What caused the war? And how was Put-in-Bay involved?” Let’s take a look.


Trade Interference

America had become independent from Britain years earlier, but tensions still existed. Back in Europe, across the Atlantic, Britain and France were embattled in the Napoleonic Wars. The United Kingdom wanted to prevent any advantage France might get, so it decided to interfere with trade. How? By going after the United States. British leaders believed that cutting off America’s ability to trade with France and the rest of Europe would harm France’s capacity to fight. So, Britain started to restrict America’s ability to trade by cutting off supplies, placing warships outside major ports, and refusing to allow America to trade with any European countries.

As a response, Congress passed the 1807 Embargo Act and the Non-Intercourse Act of 1809. These allowed free trade during the French-British Napoleonic Wars. But, the British continued to jeopardize the health of American commerce and antagonize the country in other ways.


Indian Attacks and Kidnapping

British aggression continued beyond trade. Britain began to capture U.S. trade ships and forced the sailors to join the Royal Navy. Essentially, these actions were equivalent to kidnapping, slavery, and forced labor.

Additionally, the British encouraged Native American Indians to attack American settlers. It was as though England was operating under the idea that the United States were at war with them. Historians assert that wasn’t the case. After much deliberation and aggravation, American President James Madison believed it was time to declare war on the United Kingdom. He did so on June 18, 1812.


Canada, Detroit, and South Bass Island

The U.S. invaded Canada (a British colony) soon after declaring war on Britain. Popular belief held that the Canadians would welcome American troops and support their “liberators” as friends. That notion proved to be false. The United States suffered an embarrassing defeat because most Canadians were loyal to the British. Shortly after that, Tecumseh, a Native American warrior at odds with America based on previous encounters, and his Shawnee fighters partnered with the British and captured Detroit from the Americans.


The Battle of Lake Erie: A Turning Point at Put-in-Bay

At South Bass Island on September 10, 1813, the turning point in the War of 1812 occurred. Oliver Hazard Perry led nine American ships into combat in the Battle of Lake Erie. His fleet captured six British ships and 306 soldiers. Put-in-Bay was Perry’s operational base, and he was able to lead the Americans to victory from the harbor.


In the Battle of Lake Erie, 27 American and 41 British soldiers died in combat. (Three officers on each side fell in battle.) The soldiers were buried at sea, and the six officers were buried on the island, in a clearing, underneath a sole willow tree. For many years, this “Lone Willow” stood as a reminder of the battle and Commodore Perry’s triumph. Eventually, the famous Victory Monument was built to memorialize the battle. You can read more about the Put-in-Bay monument here.

The Battle of Lake Erie marked pivotal moment in the War of 1812. It prevented Britain from moving toward the central United States along the waterways. Additionally, it allowed American forces to regroup and re-invade Canada. Commodore Perry and General William Henry Harrison used Put-in-Bay to design and carry out their attacks. This time, U.S. forces reclaimed Detroit. They re-entered Canada and overtook the British army (and Tecumseh) at the Battle of Thames. Without their headquarters on South Bass Island, the American forces probably would have lost their momentum in the war.

Put-in-Bay Boat Battle

Trouble on the East Coast

About a year later, the British turned their efforts to the east coast. British troops attacked Washington D.C. and burned down the Capitol and the White House on August 24, 1814. Britain turned its attention to Baltimore a few weeks later. Even though they were greatly outnumbered, American forces held off the British during a three-day fight. It was during this skirmish that Francis Scott Key wrote the poem that became our national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner.”


An Ironic, Final Battle

The British took a different approach in their final attempt to achieve victory. A few months later, on January 8, 1815, they attacked Louisiana and hoped to take control of the New Orleans port. Andrew “Stonewall” Jackson withstood the invasion and forced the British away. The irony surrounding the Battle of New Orleans is that President Madison signed the Treaty of Ghent that ended the war before the battle even took place. But, considering the slow rate at which news traveled, neither American nor British forces in New Orleans learned that the war was over until the battle had ended.


Peace and Hope for Put-in-Bay and Beyond

So, who really won the war? Neither side gained any ground or territories, no borders changed, and the war ended in a stalemate. But, one could argue that both the British and the Americans won because of the enduring peace and hope between the two countries. Since the War of 1812 ended, there has been a lasting peace – a type of peace and hope that one experiences on the Lake Erie Islands. Why not book a stay at the Put-in-Bay hotels, Put-in-Bay cabins, Put-in-Bay rentals, or Put-in-Bay Condos today?

Put in Bay Condos Pool
Put in Bay Condos Pool

Put-in-Bay Island Club Pavilions

The Island Club offers the island’s newest full service indoor/outdoor pavilion space with all lodging and amenities onsite. We have just built two brand new outdoor pavilions behind our big pool. They can easily seat up to 100 guests depending on seating configurations. Enhancements that are coming soon will include roll-down sidings to enclose the pavilions in case if inclement weather, and a big-screen TV for entertainment and presentations.

Island Club Pavilion Construction
Island Club Pavilion Construction

Island Club Pavilions
Island Club Pavilion Completion

Outdoor pavilions, once wittily referred to as “follies” by the English elite, have endured for hundreds of years around the world. Intended to provide shelter from the elements and comfortable repose, as well as a designated space to entertain guests throughout the seasons, the outdoor pavilion has enjoyed a particularly modish comeback in recent years.

The two pavilions can be combined or separate, so it is perfect for family reunions both big and small… groups… events… and casual meetings! We have an exclusive catering contract with Mr. Ed’s (Cameo Pizza, Salads, Wings, Sandwiches, Drinks, and More!) if your group needs food or snacks. Pizza parties are VERY popular!

Island Club Gazebo 2
Island Club Gazebo 2

Island Club Gazebo 1
Island Club Gazebo 1

“The opening of the new pavilion represents another step in the development of the Island Club Subdivision on South Bass Island (Put-in-Bay) Ohio. The Island CLub was first started many years ago when Paul Jeris and Ed Gudenas created the original development plans for the community. The Pavilion is an important first step towards attracting more family reunions, weddings, and even corporate events to our area. We look forward to the strengthening of the community around this new pavilion and the growth of the Island Club and Put-in-Bay in general.

We are also looking forward towards the installation of new high-speed internet later this year and even more exciting developments next year. These collective efforts all help increase the happiness for tens of thousands of visitors and residents alike. It truly offers a gateway to the outdoor recreation and camaraderie of the new Island Club ‘park’ area,” said Paul Jeris, President of the Island Club Homeowners Association.


Our family reunion and company event planners can assist you in all aspects of coordinating your corporate event, family reunion or wedding. For additional details, please call our main reservation center at 216-898-9951 and we would be glad to complete a proposal specifically for you: https://www.islandclub.com/contact

Put-in-Bay Hotel Heritage

The crown jewel of the Lake Erie Islands, Put-in-Bay, has been a favorite destination of tourists for over 200 years.  Many are aware of the island’s rich history and its role in the War of 1812 but less know if the rich hotel heritage.  Put-in-Bay, also known as South Bass Island, served as a type of headquarters for Commodore Perry and the American Navy during the war.  From the harbor, Perry was able to defeat the British in the Battle of Lake Erie, which proved to be the pivotal victory in the conflict.  Ever since then, Put-in-Bay hotel heritage has come to stand for freedom, joy, and peace.

In the years following the war, many came to the island to soak up its pleasures.  Some would walk along the lakefront.  Others would attend celebratory commemorations of the Battle of Lake Erie.  Regardless of their reason for arriving, visitors would have to leave the island by nightfall because there were no hotels or lodgings on the island for tourists.

Today, first-rate establishments like the Put-in-Bay Condos or the classic Island Club rentals allow tourists to enjoy more time on the island.  But, this wasn’t always the case. In fact, island-goers had to wait approximately 50 years after the War of 1812 ended before overnight lodgings arrived.

Put-in-Bay Hotels
Put-in-Bay Hotels

The First Hotel on Put-in-Bay

The very first hotel on the island had a humble beginning.  In the early 1860s, a man by the name of Frederick Cooper saw an opportunity for business and added rooms to a house near the boat landing.  As the demand for more guests increased, he built more rooms.

A few years later, in 1867, he found a partner (Andrew Decker), and they officially named their budding enterprise The Island Home.  Over the next few years, The Island Home underwent several expansions.  Builders added stables, a bowling alley, a bar, and a beer garden.  They sold it in 1879, and the new owner, Henry Beebe, re-named the establishment the Perry House.

Under Beebe’s direction, island contractors added a three-story wing, an ice cream parlor, and a ballroom.  The Perry House could accommodate 300 guests at a time, and Mrs. Beebe served as the hostess for fancy dinners every night at 6 p.m.  For about 25 years, the Perry House was the place to be for ballroom dancing, parties, and a lakeside excursion.

In 1910, the Perry House was sold and re-named the Hotel Commodore.  It was sold again to the Schlitz Brewing Company a few years later.

Regrettably, the hotel caught fire and burned to the ground on August 23, 1932.


Put in Bay Hotels
Put in Bay Hotels

The Put-in-Bay House:  Fires, A Colonial, and a New Saloon

The Put-in-Bay House developed almost concurrently with the first hotel on Put-in-Bay.  Once owned by island developer A.P. Edwards, this island “White House” was purchased by Joseph W. Gray, then-editor for The Plain Dealer, in 1861 as a rooming house.  Ownership changed hands a few times over the next several years until Sweeney, West and Company took possession.  Contractors added a new wing, which was accompanied by a 500-foot hall running along the ground floor of the main building.  Builders placed a majestic fountain in front of each wing and expanded the dining room to seat about 1000 people.  Sweeney, West, and Company’s Put-in-Bay House became a vibrant, exciting destination for over a decade.

On August 30, 1878, The Put-in-Bay House was going to host a substantial charity benefit for those affected by yellow fever in the south.   1000 tickets were sold, but, fire struck this island lodging, and the house burned to the ground before the party.

Years later, it was rebuilt it as the famous Colonial Hotel, which stood for over 100 years before also burning down in 1988, leading many to believe the land is cursed.  Today, where the Colonial once existed, stand the Beer Barrel Saloon and Tipper’s Restaurant.  You can read more about the Colonial’s fascinating tale here.

Some Smaller, Classic Put-in-Bay Island Hotels

The Hunker House opened in 1871.  It was located on the eastern edge of the village park and had its own vineyard and orchard.  The Hunker House was famous for its wines, ice cream, and pies—all made from homegrown fruits.  Like many other island properties, the Hunker House endured multiple owners and name changes (i.e. Ward Summer Resort, Detroit House, Crescent Hotel).  At its peak, this establishment housed about 140 guests.  It closed in 1971.

The Gill House was built in the early 1800s and accommodated 40 people.  As time passed, it, too, faced name changes, depending on the owner.  At one time, it was known as Bon Air.  In another period, it became the Smith Hotel.  Then, it morphed into the Hotel Oelschlager.  As the Hotel Oelschlager, it featured a general store where visitors could purchase groceries and souvenirs.  It also boasted an attached restaurant.  Today, the building still stands as the Country House gift shop and antique store—a famous landmark and destination.

Eagle Cottage was once owned and operated as a boarding house until it was purchased in 1946 and renamed the Friendly Inn.  It was sold in 1970 and now stands as the Crew’s Nest—a boat club and resort.

Other buildings, like the Bay View House and the Reibel House, have come and gone, but the Park Hotel (originally known as the Deutsches Hotel) still stands today.  It was built in the 1870s with 26 Victorian-style rooms, right next to the Round House Bar.

Perhaps the most famous, or infamous, of all Put-in-Bay Hotels was Hotel Victory.

Put-in-Bay’s Hotel Victory

Hotel Victory was to be the grandest hotel in America, and, when it opened in 1892 (and was fully completed in 1896), it was, indeed, the largest hotel in the United States.  The majestic establishment featured miles of carpet, a boardwalk to the beach, fountains, a pool, and much, much more before it, too, met an untimely demise.

Hotel Victory
Hotel Victory

Our Hotel Heritage on South Bass Island

Put-in-Bay has a flavorful history, and its hotel heritage is a small part of that legacy.  We’re proud to accompany the memories and are eager to build more.

2018 Put-in-Bay Road Race Reunion

Put-in-Bay Road Race Reunion Sports Car Races To Celebrate “Bugeye Sprites” and Porsche

The 2018 Put-in-Bay Road Race Reunion will honor 60 years of the intrepid Austin Healey Bugeye Sprite (introduced in 1958) and Porsche. In 2018, they will be celebrating 70 years of building some of the most desirable cars ever conceived. Strong turnouts for racing and road-going examples of both marquees are anticipated as well as the usual array of vintage sports cars. Examples include Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Austin Mini, MG, Lotus, Morgan, Triumph and others. There is a growing gaggle of vintage open wheel cars also.

Approaching its 10th year, the annual Put-in-Bay Road Race Reunion event has a revised date pattern for 2018. Previously held in late August, the 2018 event has moved to late September (September 24 – 27) with racing to be held on Tuesday and Wednesday, September 25 and 26, 2018. There was a record entry for the 2017 event. Owner-drivers of more than 100 race cars and some 60 street cars came to play. Now, organizers are expecting a comparable turnout in 2018 despite the date change.

Road Race Reunion Corvette
Road Race Reunion Corvette

“Bugeye Sprites were highly represented in the original 1958 and later races at Put-in-Bay and a variety of Porsches were significant competitors at the original races,” said event founder and race director Jack Woehrle. “Both marquees represent their own brand of durability and competitiveness, so we think it’s quite fitting to honor them for our 10th annual event.” Interested in more Put-in-Bay Events?

Put-in-Bay Racing Today

The modern-day Put-in-Bay sports car races began with a small reunion in 2009. That event marked the beginning of an effort to celebrate the history of small-bore sports car races that were held from 1952 to 1959 and once in 1963 at historic Put-in-Bay. The event has steadily grown and evolved into a substantial annual sports car happening. It is focused around vintage races at the Put-in-Bay Airport featuring the same types of cars that raced on the island back in the day.

Road Race Reunion Marker
Road Race Reunion Marker

Uniquely offering entry options for both racing and non-racing participants, today’s Put-in-Bay Road Race Reunion generally welcomes vintage race prepared pre-1973 production cars. These care are up to 3 liters engine displacement, sports racers up to 1.5 liters and vintage Formula Vees, Formula Juniors and Formula Fords. Entry exceptions are not uncommon! Interested racers of cars outside the normal entry guidelines should reach out to the race director, Jack Woehrle. There is also a limited quantity of non-racing entry options for pre-1964 “Heritage” sports cars and for post-1963 “Guest” street cars.

Tentative 2018 General Schedule of Events for Registered Participants*

Monday, September 24: Arrival day for most participants (although some will likely arrive Sunday or earlier). Registration, race-car tech inspection, afternoon car show and tour of the original course, early-evening wine and cheese reception and “recollections roundtable” presentation. Put-in-Bay Lodging is still available.
Tuesday, September 25: Track orientation for racers followed by practice sessions and group-race qualifying. Lunch-break track touring. Furthermore, early evening rocker cover races will be at The Goat restaurant.
Wednesday, September 26: Two rounds of group races, official opening ceremonies, track touring, and Put-in-Bay Cup race. Food, drink and awards follow at Joe’s Bar.
Thursday, September 27: Farewell morning brunch and departure.

Road Race Reunion Banquet
Road Race Reunion Banquet

*Spectating at many Put-in-Bay Road Races events is free to the public including the races themselves. The car show, viewing the original course tour, and the rocker cover races is also free. Finally, non-participants can enter the rocker cover races this year!


Put-in-Bay Ohio is a nostalgic little tourist town on South Bass Island. Just a short ferry ride off the shore of Cedar Point on Lake Erie near Sandusky, Ohio. Put-in-Bay is a resort community little changed from the 1950s. It’s one of the few places in North America where post-war sports cars raced through towns and countrysides on public roads and where those roads exist today virtually unchanged.

Put in Bay Boating
Put in Bay Boating

For more information, please visit www.pibroadrace.com. The 2018 event registration is still open for those last minute entries.

Contact Information

Event Coordinator: Manley Ford manley776@yahoo.com 734-502-2435
Race Director: Jack Woehrle: jackwoehrle@aol.com 803-463-5388
Car Show Coordinator: Rich Hahn: putinbaytr3@yahoo.com 216-226-2323
Advertising and Sponsorship: Kurt Niemeyer ktrg65@gmail.com 513-304-1177
Media Contact: Manley Ford manley776@yahoo.com 734-502-2435

Ford Tri-Motor Tour at Put-in-Bay Ohio

Ford Tri-Motor Tour

Recall the energy, passion, and excitement of the Roaring ’20s by flying aboard the Ford Tri-Motor. Known as the first luxury airliner, the Ford Tri-Motor redefined world travel and marked the beginning of commercial flight.

Liberty Air Museum in conjunction with EAA will be flying the TAT Ford Trimotor out of the Put-in-Bay Port Authority Airport for one day only August 6th, 9-5pm.

Ford Tri Motor

The Liberty Aviation Museum has announced a change in location for the original tour stop for August 6th 9am-5pm. We are in the process of turning this one-day tour stop into a dual promotion for the Tri-Motor Heritage Foundation’s 1929 Island Airlines Ford Tri-Motor project. The THF trailer will be there to sell merchandise on the island, with all proceeds benefiting the other Island Airlines Ford Tri-Motor in the museum’s second hangar. Rides will take place between 9am-5pm (weather permitting) at Put-In-Bay airport. We look forward to this tour stop as the beginning of many more future tour stops at the island! Advance tickets* are available at www.flytheford.org or by calling 1.877.952.5395. The cost is just $75 for adults and $50 for children under 18.

*$5.00 from each seat sold in Liberty Aviation Museum’s 1928 Ford Tri-Motor will go directly to the Tri-Motor Heritage Foundation for the support of the Island Airlines Ford Tri-Motor project. Click on the link below to get your tickets today!


EAA’s Ford Tri-Motor Takes to the Skies! Affectionately known as the “Tin Goose,” this was the largest civilian passenger aircraft of its time. Fly on the Ford August 6th!


The Battle of Lake Erie

“We have met the enemy and they are ours.”

While Put-in-Bay gets summer visitors from all over the world, most come from the Midwest. Put-in-Bay Ohio is known throughout the region as a great place for a summer getaway staycation. However, not a lot of people are aware of just how much history the island holds. Perhaps the most famous example is the role the island and its surrounding waters played in the War of 1812. Put-in-Bay was the theater for one of the most significant naval engagements of the 1800’s – the Battle of Lake Erie.

Before the Battle of Lake Erie

Like any historical conflict on American soil, there is a wealth of information out there for anyone who would like to dive more deeply into the details of the War of 1812. As such, describing the backdrop for the Battle of Lake Erie will be brief. The relevant information pertaining to the events that occurred at Put-in-Bay is that up until the Battle of Lake Erie, Britain was beating America in the War of 1812. The British Navy already had forces in Lake Erie when the war began, so they took control of it immediately. Detroit was occupied by British forces in the Siege of Detroit, and American morale was low. But on September 10th, 1813, Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry altered American history forever with his naval victory, which took place in the shadow of Put-in-Bay.

The Conflict Begins

On that fateful morning, a lookout on the Lawrence, which was Commodore Perry’s flagship, spotted the British fleet at 5 AM. The lookout on the British ship, the Queen Charlotte, spotted the American fleet soon after. The forces were about 10 miles apart at 7 AM and in a bit of a standoff. The British fleet, consisting of a schooner, a sloop, two ships and two brigs, seemed to have the early advantage in the engagement thanks to the wind. However, and thankfully for the American fleet, the weather was fickle that day. The wind shifted at approximately 10 AM, which gave Commodore Perry the advantage. The American fleet, made up of three brigs, five schooners and a sloop, could now choose when and how to engage their enemy.

The first shots of the battle were fired at 11:45 AM by British ships, whose guns had slightly longer range. These long range shots made it difficult for Perry to get his strongest ship, the Lawrence, into battle. The ship had to withstand these volleys for nearly a half hour until they were finally close enough for their own armaments. This extra time under fire took its toll on the Lawrence, and it was disabled at 1:30 PM, having had its sails ripped to shreds by British ordnance.

Things were looking bad for the Americans, but Commodore Perry had one more trick up his sleeve. Along with a small compliment of men, he hopped onto a rowboat and moved through British fire to take command of the Niagara, the other large brig in the American fleet. The British forces were expecting this to lead to an eventual retreat. But instead, Perry brought the Niagara in close to the Queen Charlotte and Detroit, which were already heavily damaged after colliding with each other. The Niagara got into a position where the British ships couldn’t effectively return fire, and unloaded her cannons. The Queen Charlotte and Detroit couldn’t manage to get themselves untangled in time to fight back, and just 15 minutes after defeat seemed inescapable, Commodore Perry had captured the entire British fleet.

After the Battle

Commodore Perry wrote a letter to William Henry Harrison, Major General of the American ground forces in the region and eventual President of the United States, to inform him of the victory. The first line of this letter is one of the most famous phrases in United States military history. The letter read, in its entirety:

Dear General: We have met the enemy and they are ours. Two ships, two brigs, one schooner and one sloop. Yours with great respect and esteem, O. H. Perry

The impact of this victory cannot be overstated. American forces maintained control of Lake Erie for the rest of the War of 1812. Possession of the lake enabled an immediate campaign to reclaim Detroit. It also allowed a strategic redistribution of forces, because the threat of an attack on Ohio or Pennsylvania was eliminated with control of the lake.

If the Battle of Lake Erie is of interest to you, then a trip to Put-in-Bay is necessary. You can learn more about the battle through primary sources like Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial. This National Park Service site is the fourth-tallest monument in America, and the tallest Doric column in the world. The observation deck provides incredible views of the portion of the lake where the battle took place. The Visitor’s Center on-site acts as a museum for the battle, filled with fascinating memorabilia. Another point of interest is the cannonball memorial in DeRivera Park. There are three American and three British soldiers buried at Perry’s monument, but that wasn’t their first resting place. They were originally buried in what is now DeRivera Park. A memorial made from cannonballs marks the original burial spot. These soldiers were buried together as a display of unity between America, Canada and Britain, and the peace between the three countries continues to this day.

More Info

Information about the Battle of Lake Erie adapted from “The Struggle For Control of Lake Erie” (Part II) by Robert J. Dodge, in the Northwest Ohio Quarterly, Vol. XXXVO, No. 2, Spring, 1964, pp. 70-97

Put-in-Bay Memorial Day Weekend Island Specials

This Memorial Day Weekend, the Put-in-Bay community honors the service of our US Veterans and all Active Duty Service Personnel with Island Specials.

The Put-in-Bay Chamber of Commerce members and businesses of South Bass Island are sharing these special offers for our active duty police/fire/EMS/military and veterans of our Armed Forces. Please check with the individual business to confirm discounts.


chicken patio
Chicken Patio Grill

  • Boardwalk Main & Upper Deck – 10% off any food item (does not include alcohol).
  • Cameo Pizza – $2.00 off a large and $1.00 off a medium pizza.
  • Chicken Patio – $5.00 off a chicken dinner.
  • Dairy Isle – 10% off any food item.
  • Hooligan’s – 10% off any food item (does not include alcohol).
  • J.F. Walleye’s (Middle Bass Island) – 50% off vacation rentals, golf cart rental and breakfast buffet.
  • Mossbacks Restaurant – 50% off for veterans and active duty military on Memorial Day.
  • Pasquale’s Cafe – 25% off meal (does not include alcohol).
  • Put-in-Bay Brewing Company – Free souvenir pint glass with any purchase.
  • Reel Bar – 20% off total food bill (does not include alcohol).
  • T & J’s Smokehouse – 15% total off food bill (does not include alcohol).
  • The Keys – 10% off any food item (does not include alcohol).


Put In Bay Shopping
Country House Gift Shop

  • Candy Bar – 10% discount.
  • Country House Gifts – 10% discount.
  • Freshwater Remedies Gift Shop – 20% off merchandise.
  • Put-in-Bay Surf Shop – 25% discount.
  • The Bucket Shop – 10% discount.


Put in Bay Condos Pool
Put in Bay Condos Pool

  • Condo and House Rental Golf Carts – $20 extra discount off the already discounted weekend rates! (Put-in-Bay Condos and Island Club guests only)
  • E’s Golf Carts – $10 off of the daily rate for active and military veterans police, firefighters, and EMS with a valid military ID.
  • Island Bike & Cart Rental – $5.00 off daily golf cart rental.
  • Island Club – Memorial Day Triple Bonus Weekend Special: #1 Bonus: Saturday Booking Restrictions lifted! Memorial Weekend Only! #2- Double Bonus: Get an extra night FREE at ANY home booked for Memorial Day Weekend! 3- Triple Bonus: Book a golf cart for Memorial Day Weekend, and get an EXTRA $20 off! Based on availability. New reservations only. Discounts can not be combined. Call 216-898-9951 to book.
  • Jet-Express – $2 off/person Military Discount (up to 6 people per military ID).
  • Miller Ferry – free transportation to Put-in-Bay or Middle Bass Island.
  • Park Hotel Golf Cart Rental – $5.00 off cart rental (day rate only).
  • Put-in-Bay Condos – $100 off any Memorial Day stay (2 night minimum).


Heinemans Winery
Heinemans Winery

  • Heineman’s Winery – 50% off combo tours. Pay only $4.00 for a winery tour, cave tour and a glass of wine or juice.
  • Island Club Taxi Service – $3/pp rides anywhere on the island. Kids 3 and under ride free!
  • Lime Kiln Bus – free transportation & $1.00 off for adult family members.
  • Perry’s Cave Family Fun Center – free admission to Perry’s Cave & $1.00 off for adult family members.
  • Put-in-Bay Condos Taxi Shuttle – $3 taxi rides, per person. Newest and friendliest fleet of taxis on the island.
  • Put-in-Bay Tour Train – free tour & $1.00 off for adult family members.
  • The Butterfly House – free admission & $1.00 off for adult family members.

The Fine Print: Each business is privately owned and operated and discounts are subject to change without notice.