Vermilion Named One of the Best Coastal Towns by USA Today

Really. It's no surprise to those of us who live here and many who have visited. We are special.

In my own top 10 places to be, Vermilion is always numero uno. Here's what USA Today had to say about Vermilion as one of the Best Coastal Towns in the country. 

After you read the review, I hope you'll decide to visit but first here are a few points worth noting, challenging and confirming: 

1. We had some stiff competition on the east and west coast but only one other Great Lake location made the cut and that's Bayfield, Wisconsin.  I've looked at their website and they are nothing like Vermilion. But that's okay. Variety being the spice of life, I would like to go there. 

2. Yes, we've always been a lakeside community. Uh, we're located on Lake Erie. But I challenge the comparison to a "New England-style atmosphere." I tend to bristle when I hear that reference because what's wrong with simply being "Vermilion?" Just us. Unlike any other. We're small, sometimes quirky, typically fun, in every way inviting but most of all we're genuine. Let's be comfortable with who we are.

So, what makes us different? That's for you to decide. Above everything else I hope you hope you experience that we're warm in our welcome, even if you're passing through. I hope you meet that stranger who says "Hi, where are you from?" and takes a little bit of time in getting to know you better. It's important to us that we make a good first impression. 

3. Maybe for your tastes, a stroll on the beach sounds sedate, which it can be, if you want. But doesn't have to be, if don't want. The vista of the lake, the weather and the boat traffic on the water is an ever-changing show with no repeat performances. Beach finds create their own kind of excitement, trust me. The locals look for weathered and buffed beach glass and lucky stones (an oval bone from the lake drum) and collect them in decorative or glass canning jars. Beach glass displays are the universally sanctioned accent in home decor here. Sometimes we have them made into jewelry... earrings and necklaces. It's a fashion statement that tells people where you're from or where you've been.

4. People do sit on their front porches in the evening and then the neighbors join them. And when people pass by, we say, "Hi." It's just what we do because it's nice and polite and comes naturally.

5. We didn't emerge in the number one spot for this contest, but we never settle for less in helping create some kind of experience or memory that you'll want to share with others. Quite often that experience is just feeling at home when you're really on vacation. 

Marilou Suszko
Executive Director, Main Street Vermilion