The World Record Attempt: Be proud Ludington and Mason County, this was the big time.

June 11, 2016

world_longest_ice_cream_1Editorial by Rob Alway, Editor-in-Chief. 

Have you ever had one of those times when you know you are amongst greatness? For me, today was one of those days. I spent the entire day in Ludington photographing and videoing the attempt to break the Guinness World Record for longest frozen dessert (or ice cream dessert). I have been covering this story since it was announced back in February that House of Flavors Restaurant was going for the record with the help of Downtown Ludington. The idea was the brainchild of Jen Tooman, who is the marketing coordinator for Downtown Ludington, Ludington’s downtown development authority. She came up with the idea a few years ago and proposed it to Barry Neal, owner of House of Flavors Restaurant. Barry said no way. Then, this past fall, the stars lined up and Barry called up Jen and said that they should go for it. And they did. They assembled a team to start planning and they had the event down to a science. Many people were involved with this event and I don’t really want to single out any more, in the event that I may miss someone.

Now, I have spent most of my adult life being an advocate for the Ludington area. I grew up here, fifth generation. I’m pretty darn proud of Mason County. Whenever I am on vacation, I pack my “Ludington” and “Badger” shirts and sweatshirts along with my Scottville Clown Band hat. I am a self-appointed ambassador for our community. I love it. But today, I am beyond words. This event received national recognition. In fact, earlier in the day a producer from NBC News called me and asked if she could use the footage I was shooting of the event. The thousands of people this event brought into town means money pumped into our economy. The state, regional and national recognition means more visitors. For those in denial, the reality is that tourism is Mason County’s top industry and we need to offer the best service and product we can for our customers.

This was the big time, folks. It took thousands of people to plan this event and be a part of it. We should be proud of ourselves. It seems Michigan has gotten some bad press lately with the Flint water crisis and the Detroit schools debacle. But, in my eyes, what we did today — that’s the real Michigan. We live in the greatest state in the Union and we live in the most beautiful part of that state. Hands down.

Nice job Ludington, Mason County, west Michigan!

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