Cheers for Charlevoix Beers: 5 Awesome Breweries

Calling craft beer drinkers! Northern Michigan is the perfect place to enjoy the lakes while sipping on a delicious Michigan craft beer. If you’re looking for an ideal spot to stay right in the middle of a fun Michigan brew tour, look no further than the Charlevoix area!

Read more on a few breweries to discover in Northern Michigan via the Charlevoix Convention and Visitors Bureau.

1. Lake Charlevoix Brewing Company
Charlevoix

Located in downtown Charlevoix, the Lake Charlevoix Brewing Company is an 8 tap brew-pub featuring four mainstays and four ever rotating tap handles of quality Michigan craft beer. During the warmer months make sure to get a seat in the beer garden overlooking Round Lake. They thoroughly enjoy the seasonality of different beer styles, drinking darker beers in the winter and lighter beers in the summer. One of the coolest beers on tap currently is Our-Levoix, a rhubarb red ale that is both tart and sweet brewed in collaboration with Our Brewing Co. Hopheads will love the El Trubador, a citrus noted Imperial IPA made from Michigan Cascade Hops. The food menu provides shareable apps and simple tacos and sandwiches that perfectly accompany the beer choices.

Lake Charlevoix Brewing Company is your stop for delicious craft beer

Photo Courtesy of the Charlevoix Convention and Visitors Bureau

2. Petoskey Brewing Company
Petoskey

It’s hard to miss the Petoskey Brewing building on M-119, which was built in 1898 and brewed until 1915. In 2012, the brewery was restored and reopened. The seasonal Cranium Crush Waffle Cone Raspberry Cream Ale is a great blend of fresh raspberries and actual waffle cones. This unique brew is a great seasonal beer that’s smooth and great for summer. If you are a IPA fan, Hopsessed Double I.P.A. is a bold blend of citrus and Simcoe dry hop. This beer’s high bitterness is somewhat toned down by the caramel used in the malted barley. Petoskey Brewing also offers a full menu with delicious burgers and sandwiches.

The Petoskey Brewing company hails from a historic northern Michigan location

Photo Courtesy of the Charlevoix Convention and Visitors Bureau

3. Beards Brewing Company
Petoskey

Nestled in downtown Petoskey, Beards has a unique concealed backroom location. With a vibe like your neighborhood coffee shop, the low key feeling is ever present with the offering of Wed-Sat food truck Happy’s Tacos. Looking for a good summer beer? Look no further than the Luna, this beer is a classic brewery staple that is a saison-styled American wheat ale that has amazing undertones of citrus. The Serendipity Porter offers a smooth chocolatey flavor with a perfect blend of sweetness. There are also subtle undertones of sherry and smoke that makes this a great class of beer.

Beards Brewing is a can't-miss when visiting Petoskey

Photo Courtesy of the Charlevoix Convention and Visitors Bureau

4. Shorts Brewing Company
Bellaire

Shorts is a Northern Michigan staple. This local brewery has gained state and national recognition for their innovative beer names. Known for its Soft Parade, Bellaire Brown, and Huma Lupa Licious, the brew pub also offers numerous unique beers that cannot be found in stores. Try their Chocolate Wheat ale, an amazingly smooth and drinkable porter style beer. Gitchy Gitchy Ooh La La is brewed with nontraditional ingredients such as cucumber, lemon and lilac. This tasty blend creates a fun tasting experience. Shorts always has tons of new beers being added to their tap list. Make sure to save room for food, as their menu does not disappoint (our fav is the White Pepper sammy).

Shorts is known as one of the most recognizable breweries in Michigan

Photo Courtesy of the Charlevoix Convention and Visitors Bureau

Up & Coming

Stiggs will be a great addition to the Michigan brewery family

Photo Courtesy of the Charlevoix Convention and Visitors Bureau

5. Stiggs Brewing Company
Boyne City

We were very lucky to get a sneak peek! Located downtown Boyne City, Stiggs Brewing Company can be found in the historical Alpena Railroad building. This once bustling railroad depot promises to be the next great addition to the Michigan craft beer scene. The Screaming Tree IPA is an American hops and barley ale that’s well balanced and smooth. The Boyne Logger is a Vienna Style Lager that is lightly hopped and visitors a chance unwind after a busy day.  The Swoopy Swallow is a Weizenbier that has a wheaty malt flavor with an extremely crisp finish. Stiggs serves pub food with a twist derived from local farmers and vendors paired with Stiggs hand crafted beers and other Michigan wines and spirits. Don’t miss your chance to visit the newest addition to Northern Michigan. Stiggs Brewing Company will be opening in October of 2016!

Tap Rooms You can never go wrong with Michigan craft beer. Check out each of these locations to find more awesome Michigan beer.

Which of these breweries have you visited? Share with us by commenting below!

Things to Do and See Around the Pure Michigan 400 Weekend

Michigan International Speedway (MIS), home to the Pure Michigan 400 and located in the scenic Irish Hills, is a perfect destination for NASCAR enthusiasts who love the outdoors. The two-mile track is located on more than 1,400 acres near Brooklyn, a small-town community with unique attractions and destinations nearby.

Whether you are a lifelong fan, or this is your first race, there’s so much to experience during race weekend when visiting the Irish Hills. So rev up your engines and read more on how to plan your ultimate weekend at MIS.

MIS is one of NASCAR's fastest tracks

Photo Courtesy of Craig Gardiner Photography

Things to Do

If you’re arriving to the area early, or staying a few days after the checkered flag drops, there plenty of activities that will make your visit complete.

Camping continues to be a huge part of the Pure Michigan 400 experience, and for good reason. MIS is a destination within itself, with ten campgrounds and nearly 9,000 campsites, it is the largest registered campground in Michigan. If you don’t have a camper or tent, take advantage of one of the RV rentals offered by the speedway.

The Cherry Creek Winery in Brooklyn makes homemade wine in a 100-year-old school house, as well as fresh butter fudge and Michigan cherry preserves. Staying on a historic note, the Walker Tavern Historic Site and Cambridge Junction Historic State Park is an iconic spot in the area, and offers one of the largest Farmers Markets in Southeast Michigan. Here, at crossroads where Sylvester Walker fed weary travelers in the mid-1800s, you’ll now find more than 50 venders offering fresh produce, baked goods, and locally produced crafts.

Cambridge-Junction

From 1836 to 1855, when a stagecoach ride from Detroit to Chicago was a long and arduous five-day trip, a favorite stopping place to relax and enjoy a meal was Walker’s farmhouse and tavern.

Just beyond the grounds of MIS, you can explore the US-12 Heritage Trail which bridges southern Michigan’s east and west shores. The US-12 Heritage Trail encourages travelers to journey its winding roads, meet its people, explore its places, and uncover its hidden treasure. Feed your travels at Randy’s Barbeque Shack, home of award winning smoked beef brisket, chicken and more.

Play some games on the grass at one of 32 golf courses within a half hour drive from MIS. Located in Brooklyn is Hills’ Heart of Lakes, one of the finest golf courses in the Jackson area- which also happens to be owned and operated by Senior PGA Tour Pro Mike Hill and his family! After the champion has been crowned and the crowds have cleared out, stick around to enjoy 18 holes at  Clark Lake Golf Club with great weekday special rates as well as a full service restaurant and bar.

Hills' Heart of the Lakes is one of the most popular courses in the area

Photo Courtesy of Hills’ Heart of the Lakes

Explore the Area

The Irish Hills Area has more than 50 lakes, many of which have public access swimming and boat, canoe, and kayak rental options that allow you to explore Michigan’s inland lakes while unwinding from an exciting weekend at MIS.

You might fall in love with the small town feel that encompasses southeast Michigan as you explore the area. In addition to Brooklyn, Onsted, Tecumseh and Manchester are all welcoming communities with unique attractions and local charm.

About a half hour drive North West of Brooklyn is the historic city of Jackson which has much to offer in way of history and culture, and a lively arts district. Check out a historic prison tour at Michigan’s First State Prison. Adjacent to the prison is a must see in Jackson’s art district, ART 634, a true “Center for the Creative Spirit” with displays of music, dance, photography, painting and more.

The historic prison tour is a can't-miss when visiting Jackson

Photo Courtesy of Jennifer Bowman, Permissions given by the Michigan Department of Corrections

Traveling east on I-94, you’ll find Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti. Ypsilanti has a great outdoors scene for golfing, mountain biking, canoeing and hiking as well as beautifully preserved historic areas and hotspots of arts, music, and shopping. Home of the University of Michigan, the city of Ann Arbor has a thriving art community, one of America’s Best Main Streets, nature trails, and restaurants that will satisfy any foodie. (We recommend a corned beef sandwich at Zingerman’s).

The Big Race!

The big event is undoubtedly the Pure Michigan 400 on Sunday, August 28. NASCAR’s biggest stars bring the drama and excitement to the fastest track in NASCAR as they make their final push to make the final Chase for the Sprint Cup.

A NASCAR race is fun for the whole family and definitely should be on everyone’s Pure Michigan bucket list. Purchase your tickets now and don’t forget to tag your photos with #PureMichigan and #PureMichigan400 while you’re there!

The Pure Michigan 400 provides thrills from the start to the drop of the checkered flag

The Pure Michigan 400 provides thrills from start to finish

Have you ever attended the Pure Michigan 400? Share your experiences with us below!

Get out on the Water This Summer in Cadillac

All summer long in Michigan, boaters, paddlers and fishermen have an insatiable itch to hit the water. Those fresh fragrances, sights and sounds are a siren’s song to the adventurous as well as for those who seek that special peace found only on the water. So get your boat on its trailer, load up the canoes and kayaks, stow your gear and make your way to Cadillac

Read more on what you can experience when visiting this quaint Michigan destination, courtesy of the Cadillac Area Visitors Bureau.

Three Awesome Lakes

Lakes Cadillac and Mitchell in Cadillac, and Lake Missaukee east of Cadillac, offer thousands of acres of prime fishing and watersports opportunities. Lake Cadillac’s 1,130 acres also feature over 400 acres of prime fish-holding weed cover. Lake Mitchell is a roomy 2,580 acres, with 2,000 of those dominated by lush patches of aquatic cabbage weed. The lakes are connected by a canal and offer many access points. In adjacent Missaukee County, Lake Missaukee’s 1,880 acres vary in depth from five to 27 feet, and much of the center portion lake bottom is covered with a wide variety of native aquatic plants.

The Cadillac canal connects you to amazing lakes in the region

Photo Courtesy of the Cadillac Visitors Bureau

Three Awesome Rivers

Three prime rivers wind their way through or near the area and offer fishing and paddling experiences second to none, hosting paddlers and fishermen from around the world. The Big Manistee River, a National Scenic River, offers over 90 miles of access and varied difficulty levels, from beginner to expert paddling experiences.

In the Cadillac region it’s perfect for the casual paddler, and with its many switchbacks providing sandbars, it’s great for socializing and sunbathing. The Big Manistee is also a year-round haven for fly fishermen who chase its feisty Steelhead, varieties of salmon, trout and largemouth bass.

The Manistee River is an ideal summer destination for time spent on the water

Photo Courtesy of the Cadillac Visitors Bureau

The Pine River lures anglers and paddlers with its designations as a Wild and Scenic River and as a Blue Ribbon Cold-Water Fishery. Its 7 percent river gradient in some sections offers the fastest average flow of any Lower Michigan river creating a challenging paddle. It requires watersports recreation passports for all watercraft and may be obtained at the US Forest Service Station, and rental thru local liveries.

About 20 miles southwest of Cadillac the Pere Marquette River flows in a westerly direction to its mouth at Pere Marquette Lake, just south of the city of Ludington. With Steelhead, salmon, browns and ‘brookies,’ it’s a popular haunt for fishermen, and paddlers return often because of its beautiful scenery.

Enjoy some sunset fishing on Lake Mitchell when visiting Cadillac

Photo Courtesy of the Cadillac Visitors Bureau

Our lakes also offer memory making opportunities for fall color via vehicle, boat, or bicycle.   Cadillac offers four designated Fall Color Scenic Routes, coupled with Countryside Train Rides, Craft Beer Festival and a Mountain Bike race making our area a hot spot for fall.  The fall color season kicks off the last week of September through the end of October offering several species of color intense trees for several weeks of constant color change.

For more information visit www.cadillacmichigan.com  for more information and a long and varied list of lodging opportunities from campgrounds to resorts, plus diningshopping and a whole host of activities that will make your stay one to remember.

What is your favorite thing to do in Cadillac?