7 Charlevoix Waterways to Explore in 7 Days

If you seek a definition of Pure Michigan Lake Effect, simply look at Charlevoix. Surrounded by three different lakes and located within minutes of other area waters, Charlevoix has a reputation as the water enthusiast’s paradise. Here you can enjoy Michigan summers at their best: water, sun, and sand. Plan a vacation (or two) using the list of our favorite bodies of water and the activities to enjoy on each.

1. Lake Michigan

Lake Michigan offers unlimited access to sailing, motor boating, fishing, kayaking, scuba diving and many other fun adventures. Spend the day exploring the coastline of Charlevoix, or head over to Beaver Island for an amazing day trip. Lake Michigan beaches in the Charlevoix area provide some of the best hunting ground in the state for the elusive Petoskey Stone. Make sure to see a sunset over Lake Michigan during your visit!

Stunning sunsets are just some of the beautiful views to be found in Charlevoix

Photo Courtesy of Mark Haveman

2. Lake Charlevoix

Lake Charlevoix was voted the best lake in the eastern half of the country, via a USA Today vote, for good reason. Nestled between Charlevoix, Boyne City, and East Jordan, Lake Charlevoix guarantees a day of adventure and beauty. If you’re a thrill seeker, Lake Charlevoix is great for wakeboarding, waterskiing and tubing. Paddlers can access the lake from the many beaches that dot the shoreline. Fishing on Lake Charlevoix is diverse because of the two distinct sections. After a day in the sun, enjoy the courtesy docks at the Charlevoix, Boyne City and East Jordan marinas to grab a bite to eat.

3. Round Lake

Located between Lake Michigan and Lake Charlevoix, Round Lake is a gateway between waterways. Don’t let this small lake fool you! Be sure to check out the beautiful houses located on Round Lake and see if you can spot several Earl Young buildings. Paddle through the hidden river next to the Coast Guard Station to explore the wildlife and historic homes.

The lakes and waterways around Charlevoix are a boater's paradise

Photo Courtesy of Kelly Kazmierski

4. Torch Lake

Did you know that Torch Lake is the second largest inland lake in Michigan as well as one of the most popular boating destinations? Known for its amazing turquoise blue water, this lake is a must see. Stop by the large sandbar in the southern portion of the lake and enjoy a picnic in the sun.

5. Jordan River

Spend the day tubing, rafting or kayaking down the Jordan River. At a moderate pace, the Jordan River offers great meandering views of northern Michigan’s natural beauty in a serene setting. There are rentals available for kayaks, canoes, or tubes. Make sure you wear water shoes…this river likes to steal flip flops if you tip!

Explore the pristine waterways around Charlevoix on the coast of Lake Michigan

Photo Courtesy of Alan Leese

6. Walloon Lake

Walloon Lake is a perfect mix of natural beauty and boater’s paradise. This inland lake offers boaters and sailors the perfect opportunity for both exciting adventure or leisurely travel. Looking for a great place to fish? Walloon Lake is home to perch, walleye, northern pike, trout, and small mouth bass. If you’re looking for a great paddling destination, Walloon Lake is the perfect size lake to explore.

Explore the many waterways in and around Charlevoix via speed or sailboat

Photo Courtesy of Michael Murphy IV Photography

7. Chain of Lakes (Six Mile, St. Clair, Ellsworth, Wilson, Benway, Hanley, Intermediate, Bellaire, Clam, Torch, Skegemog, Elk)

This area is a hidden gem and a popular place to go fishing! The inland grouping of lakes winds its way through East Jordan, Ellsworth and ends in Elk Rapids. Spend the day exploring the waterways and waterfront towns. When planning, make sure to check which lake connections are navigable for your choice of watercraft.

Whether you are a motor boat enthusiast, beach lover, fisherman, kayaker, standup paddle boarder, adventure seeker, a sailor, or simply looking for beautiful water views, the Charlevoix area offers amazing water voyages. For more information on getting out on the water, renting or chartering boats and paddle sport equipment, or for planning your next summer vacation go to visitcharlevoix.com.

 What is your favorite thing to do when visiting Charlevoix? Share with us by commenting below!

3 Ways to Get Your Feet Wet along Michigan’s Sunrise Coast

Michigan’s Sunrise Coast stretches from Au Gres to Rogers City along the blue waters of Lake Huron.  This picturesque Northeast coast of Michigan has pristine beaches, spectacular views and endless outdoor activities.With more than 20 miles of sandy beaches, the Au Sable River and 35 thousand acres of unique trails, the Oscoda area is a great destination for your summer vacation bucket list.

Here are three ways to get your feet wet and enjoy the sun, sand and fresh air in Oscoda.

Oscoda is a paradise destination on the coast of Lake Huron

Photo Courtesy of Jennifer Bailey

1. Explore Oscoda’s Water Trails 

Take in the beautiful scenery and catch a glimpse of wildlife in their native habitat during a canoeing or kayaking trip along the mighty Au Sable River.  The Au Sable is one of North America’s best canoeing rivers and runs through Northern Lower Michigan.

Whether you’re looking for a two-hour trip or a weeklong adventure, it’s an adventure you won’t want to miss.

 2. Go Fish 

If you’re looking for a trophy size fish, Oscoda is the right place for you.  The area is known for walleye fishing, but the Au Sable River and other inner lakes and streams attract trout, salmon and perch.

Once you decide where you want to fish, ,make sure you stop by the local bait shops and spend some time talking with the locals to determine what lures are hot and what is being caught.

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3. Life’s a Beach

The pristine beaches along Lake Huron, the Au Sable River, Cedar Lake and Van Etten Lake offer something for everyone.

Want a quiet afternoon taking in the sights and sounds of nature? Take in a sunrise at Huron Sunrise Park, along the Lake Huron’s shoreline. Stay for a picnic, wildlife observation, swimming or fishing.

Kids and kids-at-heart can spend a day at Oscoda Beach Park swimming, skateboarding, playing on the playground and more. While you’re there, be sure to check out the 33rd Annual Art on the Beach where there will be more than 150 artisans display and sell their handmade arts, crafts and hobbies.

Don't miss the 33rd Annual Art on the Beach

Art on the Beach is the can’t-miss event of the summer in Oscoda

If you want to take your boat out for a day on the lake, take off from Van Etten Beach Park. This park is a fresh water lake that has all the recreation activities for swimming, boating, water skiing, wave running and of course, fishing.

After all that exploring, you’ll want a place to rest your head.  Oscoda has everything from cottages, Bed and Breakfast resorts and hotels – many of them with views along Lake Huron.

From relaxing on the beach to fishing for walleyes in the lakes and rivers, Oscoda offers endless outdoor recreation activities. It’s perfect for your next family vacation!

What are you looking forward to doing in Oscoda this summer?

Discover Pure Michigan with These June Events

As the weather gets warmer and the summer seasons starts, it’s the perfect time to get outside and spend time with your friends and families, all the while, discovering something new in Pure Michigan. From the Lilac Festival on Mackinac Island to several cultural events, you’re sure to find something that piques your interest.

Below is a roundup of June events to help you plan the upcoming month. Visit our events page to see everything going on all month long.

June 1-5

Jackson Blues Festival 2016
June 2-4, Jackson

The premier Blues Festival in the area includes three days of amazing Blues entertainers from all over the US. This will be great fun for the whole family! On June 3rd, the first 100 kids will receive a free t-shirt, sunglasses and harmonica, as well as a mini workshop on how to play the harmonica. Don’t miss this music immersion experience!

Vintage Car Show
vintage car showJune 3, Holland

Join the Holland Vintage Car Club as they plan their “Remember When” Cruise & Car Show for Downtown Holland. Mark your calendar for this fun auto event! The cars will be cruising down 8th Street and the show takes place at the old Lincoln/Mercury dealership on the east end of 8th Street.

Be a Tourist in Your Own Town
June 4, Port Huron

Be a Tourist in Your Own Town is a chance for visitors and area residents to discover and rediscover the attractions and history that make Port Huron the Maritime Capital of the Great Lakes. This will be a family day filled with lots to do and see!

67th Annual Mackinac Island Lilac Festival
June 3-12, Mackinac Island

This 10-day celebration is the first and largest summer event on the Island, attracting thousands of visitors. A celebration that blends the Island’s historic varieties of lilacs, distinctive equestrian culture; fine food, drink and accommodations plus a range of other activities, the festival is one of the Island’s biggest attractions. There are an incredible number of festivities include the coronation of the Lilac Festival Queen and Court, Lilac Festival 10K, Grand Hotel History Lecture, horse drawn carriage tours, numerous concerts, sailing tours of the harbor, boat cruises under the Mackinac Bridge, wine tastings, A Taste of Mackinac Culinary Event, Mackinac Island Dog and Pony Show and the festival’s signature event, the Lilac Festival Grand Parade.

Antiques on the Bluff
antiques on the bluffJune 5, St. Joseph

Antiques on the Bluff is held along tree lined Lake Bluff Park, overlooking Lake Michigan. This antique show is a premier event for St. Joseph and antiquers around Southwest Michigan!

Michigan Makers Market
June 5, Detroit

The Michigan Makers Market opens up the definitions of art to include many other hand tooled items. This show will include looking at the creativity that Michigan people bring to everyday life. In addition to more traditional arts items this could also mean small batch foods, innovative manufacturing and unique solutions.

 June 6-12

2016 Flushing Summer Parade & Festivalflushing summer festival
June 8-12, Flushing

Presented by Flushing Valley Country Club & Golf, this is sure to be a fun time for all! Join for the parade that kicks off this annual summer festival. This will be followed by four more days of carnival food, fun, rides, golfing, entertainment tent, bubble ball, stage performances, teen tent, family fun fishing tournament, Marketplace shopping, music and more, down in Flushing’s Riverview Park!

Frankenmuth Bavarian Festival
June 9-12, Frankenmuth

Michigan’s largest celebration of Bavarian Heritage is the Frankenmuth Bavarian Festival. Visitors to the Bavarian Festival are invited to celebrate German heritage through Bavarian music played by authentically dressed German bands, watch two parades, enjoy an expanded midway with rides and games, dance music, face painting and a hands-on craft area. Taste the hearty Bavarian foods, plump bratwurst, barbecued chicken and homemade pretzels. This will be a can’t miss event.

BBQ Dinner Sail
June 10, Bay Citybbq dinner sail

Come on this family friendly sail aboard the Appledore, for a fun and relaxing evening of cruising along the Saginaw River and setting sail in the Saginaw Bay. While aboard, you will enjoy a delicious, casual barbeque meal.

Gizzard Fest
June 10-12, Potterville

With a name like that you can count on a ton of fun! This annual festival/carnival is world-renowned and includes a classic car show, 3 on 3 basketball, arts and crafts, carnival, fireworks and more!

Cereal Festival & World’s Longest Breakfast Table
June 10-11, Battle Creek

Celebrate Battle Creek’s rich cereal history with the World’s Longest Breakfast Table! There will be many fun events including all-you-can-eat cereal, booths, and games.

West Michigan Petapalooza
June 12, Holland

A long standing community event, West Michigan Petapalooza is approaching it thirteenth year. With guest appearances from America’s Best Frisbee Dogs, Zeke the WonderDog and many others, this is an event you surely will not want to miss. All of the furry friends will be searching for their Fur-Ever Families. Aside from all the wonderful animals in attendance, slated to be there are such vendors as: Rainbow International Carpet Cleaning, Green Dog Pet Accessories, Dogs Bay Boarding and many more!

June 13-19

Kalamazoo Island Festival
June 16-18, Kalamazoo

The Island Festival is one of the largest Reggae festivals in the nation bringing over 20,000 people to Kalamazoo for the three day weekend. There will be over 40 craft vendors from around the world, 20 restaurants and live music all weekend long.

Ann Arbor Book Festivalann arbor book festival
June 16-18, Ann Arbor

The Ann Arbor Book Festival’s mission is to promote reading, heighten awareness of literacy challenges and showcase the rich culture of the written word in Michigan and beyond. Each year, a diverse group of community leaders committed to literature, language and the arts in Michigan plans the Festival. While the festival is located in Ann Arbor, it is regional in its scope and interest.

Downtown Petoskey Gallery Walk
June 16, Petoskey

The art world will descend upon Downtown Petoskey for its 16th annual Gallery Walk. Participating art galleries will greet guests in an open-house format and offer delights for your eyes, ears and taste buds. Many of the galleries will have the artists present to introduce their works.

As a wonderful and exciting wrap up to the evening, art lovers will get a chance to win some fabulous art donated by the participating galleries. Earn chances to win by visiting each gallery. Winners will drawn at the Afterglow Party in the Rose Garden at Stafford’s Perry Hotel. Thousands of dollars worth of art is given away each year.

Downtown Tecumseh Classic Car & Bike Show & Music in the Parktecumseh
June 16, Tecumseh

Get your motor running and head on down the highway to the 2016 Tecumseh Classic Car & Bike Show. Cars and bikes will be displayed in the Old National Bank parking lot located at 205 E. Chicago Blvd. and the adjacent downtown parking lot for all to enjoy. Special recognition awards will be given and you can enjoy music with family and friends at Adams Park by City Hall.

Lansing Juneteenth Celebration & African American Parade
June 16-18, Lansing

Commemorating the end of slavery in the United States by celebrating the joys of liberty, educating the community about heritage and promoting positive cultural interaction, this three day event includes music, dance, entertainment, educational exhibits, a parade and entertainment. It’s celebrating 23 years in the Lansing area!

Greatest Midwest Town Partygreatest midwest town party
June 18, Traverse City

Midwest Living Magazine is throwing Traverse City a party to celebrate the city’s new title as “Greatest Midwest Town.” The party will take place at the Open Space Park and will include entertainment, food trucks, refreshments and more!

Devils Lake Festival of the Arts
June 18, Manitou Beach

The Devils Lake Festival of the Arts is a community celebration of art (including 40 Artist Booths), music, dance and local cuisine. There’s something for everyone to enjoy, so bring your friends and family and join in the festivities!

June 20-26

WOW (Wild Over Wednesday), Summer Fun in Michigan
June 22, Detroit

Celebrate the start of summer vacation! There is no better way to kick off summer than by spending some quality time outside playing games. There will be a variety of family-friendly lawn games, sidewal

k chalk games and even some team-building games! Once you’ve had your fill of games, go kick up your feet by the bonfire and roast some marshmallows to create delicious s’mores for the first 100 people.

Center Line Independence Festival
June 23-26, Center Line

The City of Center Line is celebrating its 80th Anniversary by way of its 1st Annual Center Line Independence Festival at Memorial Park. The event will include a carnival, live bands, arts & crafts, kids activities, beer tent and the always awesome Fireworks Display.

German Park Biergartenbiergarten
June 25, Ann Arbor

The German Park Recreation Club hosts three picnics the last Saturday in June, July, and August. Tehre will be live music, authentic German food and beer and live German dance performances. They welcome everyone to come enjoy their traditional hospitality.

International Bridge Walk
June 25, Sault Sainte Marie

Young and old, physically fit or fitness challenged, all enjoy the fantastic views that will last a lifetime on the bridge walk. Best of all, there’s no admission fee and no long waits. The walk steps off at 9:30am sharp. Not up to the walk? Join the bike parade that leaves LSSU at 8:30am. This event is sponsored by the International Bridge Authority and the Chamber of Commerce from both cities. Organizers remind walkers to bring a passport or other approved I.D. You must have transportation to get back across the bridge. Bus transportation is available to bring walkers from Mill Market in Sault St. Marie, Ontario back to the starting point.

Michigan Challenge Balloonfestballoonfest
June 24- 26, Howell

This fun event is the state championship of hot air ballooning in Howell. It’s a weekend full of high-flying fun for the whole family. Enjoy thrilling skydiving jumps, music, carnival, family entertainment and more. Don’t miss the fabulous balloon glow on Saturday evening and the MediLodge Fireworks on Friday night.

Best of Detroit Party
June 24, Detroit

Hour Detroit’s “Best of Detroit” party featuring the “Killer Flamingos” will bring its annual June issue to life, which announces the highly anticipated results of their annual readers’ survey. Guests will enjoy samplings of food from over 30 of the Best of Detroit-winning restaurants, plus fashion, music, luxury services, spirits, and more. Hour Detroit is the monthly city magazine metro Detroiters rely on for dynamic, award-winning coverage of issues and people affecting their lives, (as well as their source for enjoying the finer things in the region).

June 27-30

Michigan World Organization of China Painters: Annual Show & Sale
June 28-29, Frankenmuth

Join the Michigan World Organization of China Painters at Zehnder’s in downtown Frankenmuth at their Annual Show & Sale. Take time during your summer vacation to learn about the 3-4 fire technique used to produce the beautifully-decorated coffee mugs, vases, pitchers, jewelry, plates and other unique gift items available for sale. China painters will also have the rare opportunity to buy supplies directly from national vendors. Artists and vendors from around the state and country will demonstrate their skills in this art form and sell supplies.

Battle Creek Field of Flight Air Show and Balloon Festival
June 29-July 3, Battle Creek

The Battle Creek Field of Flight Air Show and Balloon Festival is an annual event located at the W.K. Kellogg Airport. Daily AM & PM Hot-Air Balloon launches will be a sight to see as well as awesome air show featuring military demonstrations and top-notched civilian performers; carnival rides and games; arts & crafts displays; food and novelty gift vendors, specialty displays; daily center stage entertainment, fabulous fireworks display, balloon night illumes; Kids Day with gifts and games; and much more family fun for everyone!

Camaro SuperfestCamaro Superfest
June 30-July 3, Ypsilanti

If you’re a car lover, you have to go to the 25th anniversary  of the Camaro Superfest! This is the longest running, largest all-Camaro event in the United States! The event is open to all Camaros, stock to highly-modified, trailered or driven.

Algonac Lions Pickerel Tournament & Festival
June 30-July 4, Algonac

Come to the Pickerel Tournament that will have family fun like a carnival midway, daily entertainment, games, vendors, food, raffle drawings, fishing contests, arts & crafts, children’s parade, festival parade, pickerel run/walk, bike race and more!

Did we miss your favorite June event? Name it below!