“The ice is out!”  That’s the expression most residents of Sister Bay want to hear from someone who has seen open water with their own eyes, or,  can confirm the truth from another eye witness.The  ice going out is  the first sign of spring for those of us in northern Door County. Nothing gets people more excited up here, not sprouts shooting up, not birds announcing their return, nor the disappearance of dirty, crusty snow along roads, nothing…. except the ice going out. When we see that blue/green/gray water in the open bay along Sister Bay’s shoreline, our hearts confirm that it’s spring at last!  About mid-March, the Sister Bay Advancement Association (organization of businesses) starts promoting the annual “Ice Out Contest”. Residents and visitors are encouraged to submit entry forms at local establishments to guess the date and time the ice will go out. Each business offers a prize to the lucky guesser(s), ranging from gift cards, merchandise or services, etc. One can enter a guess at every business, or submit multiple guesses with different dates. It’s a fun way to generate excitement and anticipation for this annual rite of spring. Do you want to get in on the action? There’s till time. Head up here for a stay at Birchwood Lodge and after settling in to your suite, take a stroll down to the shore and get a sense of when you think the ice will go out. You might even be able to form your prediction as you get a distant, partial view  from your Premier Suite balcony on the second or third floor front of the lodge. If you’re serious about trying your luck at this, request/reserve a room with a waterview ANY time you stay with us. Then, fill out an entry form at most businesses around the village and drop it in the box. Come up soon because the temperature is warming up and you never know when the ice (the ice on the bay has been three feet thick) will go out. Call us for reservations at 920-854-7195, or, reserve online at www.birchwoodlodge.com.