Midge swarms doing more than bugging Mackinaw City

Midge flies are infesting Mackinaw City longer than usual this year.

Swarms of little bugs are causing big problems in Mackinaw City this year. Clouds of midges are stopping events and slowing down city projects.

Because of the flies water tower maintenance had to be postponed and the Icebreaker Mackinac Maritime Museum cancelled their 70th anniversary celebration and temporarily stopped their top-side tours.

Lisa Pallagi who is the General Manager of the Mackinaw Maritime Museum said the choice to postpone their outdoor events was not easy, but necessary.

â??Predominately this event was going to be outdoors,â?? said Pallagi. â??The ship needed to be shiny, we needed a big open space and we just couldn't do it to make it a nice event for everyone.â??

Despite looking like a common mosquito, midges are bite-less and only live above the water for a few days.

Normally midges only stay in one area for 2 weeks or so before they die and become food for fish. However, due to this year's colder weather they have been swarming the piers of Mackinaw City for more than 4 weeks.

Even though the pest problem may seem to be out of control for some visitors and businesses, most aren't letting this problem bug them.

â??The tourists are understanding of it, they say the tours are great,â?? said Pallagi. â??They know there's nothing the town can do about it. There's nothing the ship can do about it. So just know, it's a little life altering, but we're okay.â??

The Mackinaw Maritime Museum is still open for tours inside of the ship and plans to have her 70th anniversary celebration in September.