ISEA Acquires Adjacent Property for Future Growth

Press Release – January 3, 2022

In December 2021, Inland Seas Education Association (ISEA) acquired the adjacent property just south of their Suttons Bay campus. The property’s M-22 frontage increases the awareness of ISEA and could provide a more convenient entrance into their main campus. The additional .70 acres with 108′ of waterfront also provides future growth opportunities for ISEA and the Suttons Bay community.

aerial photo of propertySince completing a 2019 major campus renovation project spearheaded by the Edmund F. and Virginia B. Ball Foundation, ISEA has embarked on a five-year Strategic Plan focused on the creation of year-round programming to fully utilize the facility and waterfront campus.

“The timing of this opportunity could not be better. We have been planning for the addition of facilities on our campus and simply have not found the space to make these plans a reality. This opportunity will not only allow our existing plans to come to fruition, but perhaps more importantly, it will enable us to address future expansion needs that we aren’t aware of today,” Fred Sitkins, Executive Director of ISEA, stated.

According to ISEA’s Strategic Plan, “ISEA will deliver year-round, STEM-based educational programming designed to highlight and fully utilize all of our shoreside assets, including the renovated Biological Station, Education Center, on-campus outdoor spaces, and dorm accommodations.” Potential plans for the property include a boat shop, ship maintenance space, and an outdoor classroom to allow for four-season use in delivering new year-round programs. Final programming on the property will be determined by input from facilitated sessions with ISEA stakeholders (including community members) and the ISEA Education Committee.

Sitkins shared, “ISEA is proud to commit to Suttons Bay and Leelanau County as our forever home and the addition of this property will greatly enhance our future plans. The Edmund F. and Virginia B. Ball Foundation has been a critical part of ISEA’s legacy and this partnership will ensure that future Great Lakes scientists, engineers, educators, and science-literate citizens will be inspired in Suttons Bay for generations to come.”

The public is encouraged to stop by their main campus at 100 Dame Street in Suttons Bay. Visitors can engage with the exhibits in the newly remodeled Education Center and request a tour of the dormitory and lab space. Those interested in helping to expand year-round programming in the current and future facilities can contact Fred Sitkins at or 231.271.3077 x101.

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