10 Fun Facts About Michigan International Speedway

Photo courtesy of Craig Gardiner Photography

Photo courtesy of Craig Gardiner Photography

Pure Michigan 400 race week is here! More than 100,000 fans will be at Michigan International Speedway to cheer on their favorite drivers as they race around NASCAR’s fastest track on August 28th.

Think you know NASCAR? Test your knowledge with these lesser known facts about Michigan International Speedway

1. The 40 trams used at MIS that bring fans from the parking lots to the track were the same trams used at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta.

2. Six-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion Jimmie Johnson is the honorary president of the MIS Kids Club! He even holds special events at the track.

3. There are 9,000 campsites at MIS – making it the largest registered campground in the State of Michigan.

4. Jeff Gordon currently holds the track qualifying record at MIS, being recorded at 206.558 mph in 2014.

5. Cale Yarborough is the driver who has led the most laps at MIS in the track’s history. In his career, Yarborough led for an astounding 1308 laps when racing at MIS.

6. Parking is always free! Guests can also bring in their own food and beverages, and parking lots open two hours before the grandstand so there is plenty of time for tailgating.

7. MIS is NASCAR’s fastest racetrack! MIS is superfast due to the repave in 2012 and long straightaways on the track that let drivers reach their highest speeds.

8. People have gotten married at the track before, but did you know that Roger Curtis presided over the wedding? It’s true! Roger Curtis, the president of MIS is an ordained minister and married a happy couple in Gatorade Victory Lane on June 17, 2012.

9. David Pearson has won the most Cup poles at MIS with 10. Who will take the pole this year?

10. MIS is the only racetrack where a fan awards a special trophy to the winning driver and team. It’s part of MIS’s Fan Appreciation Program.

Plan a visit to MIS and other Michigan automotive attractions at michigan.org. Follow the race on Twitter at #PureMichigan400. 

9 Fun Ypsilanti Events for Your Summer Bucket List

Ypsilanti (pronounced ip-sill-an-tee) is a Pure Michigan city located between Ann Arbor and Detroit. The thriving arts community, local restaurants, and endless flow of craft beer make the city authentic and unique. Summer is event season for this town, so check out this list, and tell us which Ypsilanti event you plan to attend this summer!

1)   The Color Run | June 25 

The Color Run races into Ypsilanti for its fifth year, drawing thousands of runners to this historic city. A piece of paradise can be found at this year’s Color Run with tropical color zones, palm trees, and bubbles! Get ready for The Happiest 5K on the Planet.

Runners celebrating at the Ypsilanti Color Run

Photo Courtesy of Ypsi Real

2)   Camaro Superfest | June 30 – July 2

The Chevrolet Camaro’s original production was in 1966 and has been a coveted cruiser ever since. Celebrate this muscle car with hundreds of historic and modern Camaros. Be sure to visit the Ypsilanti Automotive Heritage Museum while you’re in town and see famous cars built in Ypsilanti, including a Tucker automobile featured in a Hollywood movie.

Iconic Cameros seen at Camero Syperfest in Ypsilanti

Photo Courtesy of Ypsi Real

3)   Michigan ElvisFest | July 8 – 9

For the past 17 years, Elvis Tribute Artists have been swinging their hips and making audiences swoon at the Michigan ElvisFest. You can also hear the tunes of Frank Sinatra, Tom Jones and more at this celebration of oldies music. Experience the joy of hearing this music live in Riverside Park. Thank you, thank you very much.

4)   Michigan Brewer’s Guild Summer Beer Festival | July 22 – 23

Over 80 Michigan Brewers gather in Riverside Park for one of the state’s largest celebrations of craft beer. Local breweries from Ypsilanti such as Arbor Brewing Company, Unity Vibration, and Ypsi Alehouse will be joining the mix.

Countless Michigan craft beers are available at the MBG Summer Beer Festival

Photo Courtesy of Ypsi Real

5)   Ton-Up Motorcycle and Music Festival | August 13

Old, new, and custom motorcycles line the streets of Depot Town every year for this exciting festival. Live music takes place throughout the event, so everyone is sure to be entertained.

6)   Firetruck Muster | August 20

Modern and vintage firetrucks roll into Riverside Park for this free, family friendly extravaganza every year. Don’t be shy at this event – ask the demonstrators to sound off a siren or blast a firehouse into the Huron River! This event is hosted by The Michigan Firehouse Museum. Open year-round, this expansive museum is housed in an 1898 firehouse.

Visitors get soaked at the Firetruck Muster in Ypsilanti

Photo Courtesy of Ypsi Real

Fun at the Ypsi Heritage Festival

Photo Courtesy of Ypsi Real

7)   DIYpsi Indie Art Fair | August 27 – 28

Artists from Ypsilanti and all over the region rally together twice a year for the DIYpsi (dip-see) Indie Art Fair. Makers and artists offer affordable, whimsical, and high quality goods at this two-day event. Support local artists and find unique gifts for yourself and others

8)   Ypsilanti Heritage Festival | August 26 – 28

Live music, delicious food, and dozens of community organizations can be found at the Ypsilanti Heritage Festival. To commence the festival, hundreds of rubber ducks are spilled (and caught) in the Huron River for the annual Rubber Duck Race. Purchase a duck for $5 to enter the race to win amazing prizes!

9)   Thunder Over Michigan | August 20 – 21

Ypsilanti is known for its contribution to aviation history at the Willow Run Bomber Plant – home to Rosie the Riveter. Hosted by the Yankee Air Museum, Thunder Over Michigan draws thousands of spectators every year to marvel one of the greatest “warbird” shows in America. Witness antique bomber jets, and state-of-the-art contemporary aircrafts fly and sometimes flip in the sky!

A crowd enjoying the air show at Thunder over Michigan

Photo Courtesy of Ypsi Real

Thanks for reading! For more information, follow Ypsi Real on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Six Ways to Celebrate Spring in Ann Arbor

Spring has finally arrived in Pure Michigan! The days are getting longer, the weather warmer and exciting events are taking place around the state. That means it’s time to celebrate spring in the Ann Arbor area! Below are six ways to experience the season in AA.

Get your geek on.
Plan your next visit to coincide with Free Comic Book Day on Saturday, May 7 hosted by Vault of Midnight. A retail event like no other, hundreds of costumed fans of all ages will line up around the block to participate in what feels like a mini-comic con in the heart of Downtown Ann Arbor. While waiting in line may seem like a drag, Vault staff entertains everyone with games, prizes, and general shenanigans. Learn more about the event, including which other downtown Ann Arbor retailers will be participating in the event.

Photo Courtesy of Visit Ann Arbor

Score in Ann Arbor
AFC Ann Arbor kicks off its first season in the National Premier Soccer League this year, joining the ranks of some incredibly competitive teams throughout the Midwest Region. Specifically, the Mighty Oaks are looking forward to hosting Grand Rapids FC over Memorial Day Weekend and Detroit City FC over Independence Day Weekend. Check out the complete schedule and to incorporate a match into your weekend.

Photo Courtesy of Visit Ann Arbor

Photograph an heirloom peony garden.
Nichols Arboretum, located on the University of Michigan campus, features a stunning spring display of historic peony varieties. When filled to capacity the garden holds nearly 800 peonies and up to 10,000 flowers at peak bloom! The best time to visit is usually Memorial Day – mid-June. Follow Visit Ann Arbor on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for bloom updates.

Photo Courtesy of Visit Ann Arbor

Tackle the Argo Cascades.
Did you know that Ann Arbor features kayaking along the Huron River? Suitable for novices but enjoyable for those more experienced, the Argo Cascades is a series of nine small rapids, rock chutes and pools. Continue down the river to Gallup Park — about a 90-minute journey — for some of the most scenic views of the area! Equipment rentals are available starting at 10am in May and 9am starting Memorial Day Weekend.

Photo Courtesy of Visit Ann Arbor

Score at the LPGA Volvik Championship.
This Memorial Day Weekend marks the inaugural year for the LPGA Volvik Championship tournament at Travis Pointe Country Club in Ann Arbor. The event will feature a full field of 144 players competing in a 72-hole showcase for a purse of $1.3 million. Join fans on Saturday for “Orange Out for ChadTough!” — a special $30 ticket package available until May 15 which includes a Saturday Grounds ticket, a t-shirt, and your choice of either a sleeve of orange golf balls, an orange Volvik baseball hat, or an orange tee-holder. $10 from each ticket package sale will go directly to The ChadTough Foundation.

Photo Courtesy of Visit Ann Arbor

Bacon! Bacon! Bacon!
June 1- June 5, join Zingerman’s in this epic tribute to cured pork. Camp Bacon® features a week’s worth of bacon-based events, from a film festival to The Main Event — a day filled with meaty speakers, lots of learning, and, of course, all the bacon you can eat! The festivities conclude on Sunday with the Camp Bacon Street Fair at Kerrytown. As always, this year’s Camp Bacon is a fundraiser for two amazing non-profit organizations: The Southern Foodways Alliance and the 4H Club of Washtenaw County.

Go to VisitAnnArbor.org for more information about all these events and more in the greater Ann Arbor area. You can also follow Visit Ann Arbor! on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. See you soon!