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The Suttons Bay Marina and Park is located just steps east of the engaging village of Suttons Bay on West Grand Traverse Bay. Here, where the attraction to water means just about everything to visitors and locals alike, you will find Harbor Master, Edie Aylsworth overseeing the ongoing operations of this 174-slip marina. It is a highly responsible position, and one she has been entrusted with well. As Harbor Master, Edie is the person officially designated to enforce the regulations of the harbor, the one who makes final decisions as to ensure the safety of navigation in nearby waters, the security of the harbor itself, and the correct operation of the marina’s facilities. It really can be compared to the nautical version of an air traffic controller, and one just as responsible for keeping peoples’ lives safe.

Just about everyone has noticed the quite distinct red-sailed, emerald green hulled schooner traversing the waters around Leelanau County. This is the 77-foot schoolship, Inland Seas. A beloved ship to many, she has been around for more than 28 years now. Thomas Michael Kelly, the ship’s first captain, would be filled with joy to know that his original visions are being carried on well beyond his passing back in January 2016.

There are approximately 250 volunteers helping out at the Inland Seas Education Association. “We’d be unable to function without all the amazingly talented and amazingly dedicated volunteers,” says executive director Fred Sitkins. There are doctors, lawyers, teachers, fish biologists, interior decorators, housewives and retirees of all kinds, including retired school administrators, pipe fitters and electronic hospital equipment salesmen.