No surprise, summer is peak tourist season in west Michigan. After a long, harsh winter locals and visitors alike are eager to get outdoors and explore all that Pure Michigan has to offer. Now that many COVID restrictions have been lifted, even more folks are venturing out again meaning this could be one of the busiest summers we've seen in west Michigan.

Especially in beach-side community like Saugatuck and South Haven, parking is hard to come by! Sometimes you get lucky and find a great spot, other times it feels like you're parked miles away- we've all played that game! It's hit or miss.

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MLive reports that in an effort to control potential parking issues, South Haven City Manager Katie Hosier says she and her staff have been reaching out to local businesses reminding them of the advent of summer parking enforcement, which took effect on May 15. On her city manager blog Hosier writes,

...the city has painted hash marks at the end of parking stalls on Center and Phoenix to help delineate when a vehicle oversized. Oversized vehicles or vehicles that don’t fit in the stall may be ticketed.

Basically, if your car extends past the white line and into the roadway you could be ticketed. To some that may seem fair, but think of the angry truck drivers who have an extended cab! Many were not happy to hear of the new enforcement and voiced their concerns on social media saying,

  • "Anything for some money… instead of protecting people this weekend they going to be looking for cars that stick out of parking spots" - Jermaine Perry
  • "No problem. My money and my pickup will happily stay out of South Haven." - Howard Clocklin
  • "Next year they'll be wondering why no one goes there.... Exclude the most popular class of vehicles in the last 20 years.... Smart." - Mike Polkki

Lately it seems like South Haven is all about the fines! The city recently announced a fine of $1,000 for anyone who was caught jumping off the pier or walking on it when it's closed. It turns out that wasn't an empty threat as 4 Michigan teens racked up fines of $4000 when they jumped off the pier on May 13.

However, not all South Haven residents seem to be concerned with the parking fine. Lisa Stone-Laprise said,

It's not that hard to go around the corner to the free parking lot.

While Robert Pauliot brought up another issue,

All this complaining about the parking spaces and not one A.D.A compliant space along this stretch

Whichever side of this issue you fall on, just be advised of these new rules the next time you plan to visit downtown South Haven! Maybe just plan to bring your Fiat and leave the Ford at home...

Sleepy Hollow, South Haven