January/February 2011 – Events Roundup


Free Fishing Weekend
February 19-20, 2011 Statewide
An ice time to try fishing! One of two weekends a year when all Michigan fishing license fees are waived on inland and Great Lakes waters (fishing regulations apply).


South West

Ice Sculpting Competition
January 7-8, 2011 Holland
The 3rd Collegiate Invitational Ice Sculpting Competition has culinary students turning blocks of ice into temporary works of art displayed throughout downtown Holland.


Hunter Ice Festival
January 14-16, 2011 Niles
Over 150 professionally carved ice sculptures are a tribute to the Hunter Brothers Ice & Ice Cream Company, an important part of local history. Cool activities for shoppers and the kiddies, too.


Ice Festival
January 29, 2011 Coldwater
This annual event runs hot and cold, with a chili tasting and ice carving displays, plus story-time and activities for the kids.


Icebreaker Festival
February 4-6, 2011 South Haven
This event warms up the whole family with a chili cook-off, ice carving competition, euchre tournament, ice skating and Mardi Gras dinner dance.


South East

North American International Auto Show
January 10-23, 2011 Detroit
The latest model vehicles and future of automotive design and engineering fill Cobo Center for the exhibition that attracts some 5,000 journalists from 60 countries for new car unveilings, announcements and briefings over several days prior to the public show.


Michigan Winter Dog Classic
January 20-23, 2011 Novi
“Paws” to see over 6,000 dogs representing 160 breeds at the Rock Financial Showplace for Michigan’s largest dog show. There will be vendor booths, demonstrations and exhibitions of dog talent.


Plymouth Ice Festival
January 21-23, 2011 Plymouth
Admire more than 100 dazzling ice creations and watch frozen water artists at work!  Cheer the chainsaw speed carving show and enjoy entertainment and refreshments in charming downtown Plymouth.

Detroit Boat Show
February 12-20, 2011 Detroit
Step out of the snow and into Cobo Center for the promise of summer with the latest in the boating world, plus restored antique and classic watercraft on display.


February 25-27, 2011 Detroit
Hot rods, specialty cars, and other featured vehicles roll into the Motor City’s Cobo Center for the 59th annual Cavalcade of Customs.


West Central


Muskegon Snowfest
January 25-29, 2011 Muskegon
Play snow volleyball and snow cornhole, euchre and trivia, and join the Battle of the Bowls to choose the hottest soup and chili in town at the 27th annual winter celebration.


Michigan International Auto Show
February 3-6, 2011 Grand Rapids
It’s a global gathering of 300 new and concept vehicles, from sports cars to SUVs and hybrids. A popular attraction at the DeVos Place show is the Million Dollar Motorway featuring vehicles that retail for $100,000 and up.

Michigan Winter Beer Festival
February 26, 2011 Grand Rapids
Sip the best from Michigan’s growing specialty brew scene with hundreds of samples from over three dozen micro-breweries and brewpubs.


East Central


Caro 150 Winter Fest & Snowmobile Races
January 21-23, 2011 Caro
The half-mile oval ice track challenges pro and junior racers and vintage sleds. Family-friendly activities include a snowman contest, games, entertainment and fireworks.


Zehnder’s Snowfest
January 26-31, 2011 Frankenmuth
The famous Zehnder family restaurant celebrates winter with snow sculptures, ice carving, entertainment, fun for the kiddies and fireworks.


January 29-30, 2011 Port Huron
The Lake Huron community chills out with dog sled demos, snowmobile racing, entertainment and other cool and season-appropriate fun.


North West



January 15-16, 2011 Kalkaska
Since 1965 the third weekend in January has been a hotbed of activity with exciting sled dog races, pancake breakfast, craft show, kiddie activities and more.


Bay Harbor Ice & Snow Festival
January 21-23, 2011 Bay Harbor
See the results of the ice carving competition and catch the exciting snow-boarding show. Warm up at the Chill Lounge in the Village at Bay Harbor near Petoskey.


North American Snow Festival
February 3-6, 2011 Cadillac
Michigan’s largest snowmobile event features drags and races on the snow and ice, snow sculpture and ice fishing contests, chili cook-off, fun run, entertainment and icy polar bear dip.

35th North American VASA
February 12-13, 2011 Traverse City
One of the top cross-country ski events in the nation continues to grow its annual Festival of Races, which includes Classic and Freestyle events on 10, 12, 27 50K and 50K 2-lap races, Junior VASA, 6 and 16K Gran Travers races, and the new, casual Valentine’s Day Tour with treats from The Chocolate Den.

Benzie County Winterfest
February 12, 2011 Beulah
Flip over a flapjack breakfast followed by frozen fish toss, frozen turkey bowl, snowmobile poker run, snow softball, bonfire and fireworks over Crystal Lake.


Winter Wow!Fest
February 18-21, 2011 Traverse City
The Cherry Capital salutes President’s Day with a long weekend of indoor/outdoor family fun at and around Grand Traverse Resort with ice skating, sledding, a bed race, Polar Plunge,  frozen fish toss,  beer and wine tastings, entertainment and horse drawn sleigh rides.


Winter Carnival
February 19, 2011 Petoskey
It’s mostly downhill—in a good way—at Petoskey Winter Sports Park for the youth sledding competition and 17th annual Cardboard Challenge, skiing and snowboarding. On the level, there’s ice skating, too!

Shiver by the River
February 19-21, 2011 Frankfort
Warm up to winter with outdoor games, ice sculpture display, parade and exciting Snowmobile SnoX races.


North East

January 13-15, 2010 Mackinaw City
Join in the Straits celebration of the chilly season at the chili cook-off, or cast your line in the Paradise Lake ice fishing contest. Fun favorites: the outhouse races and snow sculptures.


61st Tip-Up Town USA
January 22-24 and 29-31, 2011 Houghton Lake
Named for an ice fishing term, the mid-Mitten resort area’s landmark winter celebration on the largest inland lake in Michigan is so great it fills two weekends with family-friendly events and contests.  Events include a Grand Parade, fireworks, snowmobile show and race, music, carnival, ice sculptures and the popular Polar Bear Dip.

20th Snow Box Derby
February 13, 2011 Oscoda
The Old Orchard Park Sled Hill will get a workout as cool contraptions made of cardboard, tape, glue and paint race in the 20th annual family fun event.


Perchville USA
February 3-6, 2011 Tawas City and East Tawas
The 61st annual celebration of winter family fun includes turkey bowling, ice volleyball, fishing contest, perch dinner and polar bear swims.


Upper Peninsula

SISU Ski Fest
January 14-15, 2011 Ironwood
“Sisu” is a Finnish word for determination, and that’s what it takes to tackle the 42K ski marathon, 21K half marathon and kiddie races. The 2nd annual event includes a 10K Taste Tour and vendor exhibits.

Heikki Lunta Festival
January 15-16, 2011 Negaunee
Midwinter festivities at Teal Lake honor the fictional Finnish snow god with a Blooper Ball winter softball tournament, fishing derby, ski/snowshoe geocaching, bonfire and fireworks.

Keweenaw Nordic Festival
January 15-16, 2011 Keweenaw Peninsula
Hit the trails in Houghton and Chassell for freestyle and classic cross-country ski races, plus the Great Lakes Division Junior Olympics Qualifier and skijoring races (with one or two dogs).

January 29, 2011 Hancock
Tied to St. Henrik’s Day in Finland, this Finnish-American festival celebrates midwinter with a parade, Tori (marketplace), polar bear dive, food and wacky games including Boot Throwing.


Noquemanon Ski Marathon
January 29, 2011 Ishpeming/Marquette
The birthplace of organized skiing and home to the National Ski Hall of Fame hosts cross-country skiers from across the U.S. and other countries in the annual 50K MGH Noquemanon Ski Marathon and 25K mBank Half Noque. The Junior Noque for youth takes place on Friday the 28th.

Cedarville Blizzard
January 29-30, 2011 Cedarville

Vintage “one lunger” sleds prove they still have what it takes to compete in 120 and 250-lap races in the Les Cheneaux area of the Eastern U.P., part of the Great Lakes Antique Snowmobile Series.

Michigan Ice Fest
February 4-6, 2011 Munising
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore provides the spectacular setting for ice climbers of all skill levels who tackle incredible ice formations along Lake Superior. Speakers, gear demos, clinics and camaraderie round out the weekend.

90th Winter Carnival
February 9-11, 2011 Houghton
Michigan Tech University students make the most of winter in the Keweenaw Peninsula by sculpting incredible snow scenes, plus festival events like broomball, ice bowling, curling, torchlight parade, fireworks and traditional Sno-Ball.

Pine Mountain Ski Jumping Tournament
February 11-13, 2011 Iron Mountain
The Kiwanis Ski Club, which was formed in 1934, hosts top athletes from around the world at one of the best—and highest—jumping hills, for the annual Continental Cup competition.

Les Cheneaux SnowsFest
February 17-20, 2011 Cedarville
Play in “The Snows” area of the Eastern U.P. on the long Presidents Day weekend packed with cardboard sled races, chili cook-off, fishing contests, and Ice Hole Two-Man Golf Scramble.

U.P. 200 & Midnight Run
February 17-22, 2011 Marquette
Watch exciting sled dog action with 40 teams in the 12-dog U.P. 200 Sled Dog Championship between Marquette and Grand Marais, and the 8-dog Midnight Run between Gwinn and Wetmore, near Munising. The 240-mile U.P. 200 is a qualifying race for the Iditarod. Gwinn is the start for the challenging 6-dog Jack Pine 30.

Antique & Vintage Snowmobile Show & Ride
February 18-19, 2011 Naubinway
Classic sleds hit the trails and are on display during the 19th annual event, which also features the Hus-Ski Hustle, hot dogs at the bonfire and a visit to Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum.

Winter Carnival
February 19, 2011 Curtis
South Manistique Lake is the setting for ice fishing and ice golf, turkey bowling, fun for the kiddies, plus a chili cook-off, bake sale and music, capped by fireworks.

2 thoughts on “January/February 2011 – Events Roundup

  1. Winterfest is a full weekend of winter fun in Grand Haven during the last week of January. The snow is upon us and with Michigan’s winters being long and cold, this is a perfect time to get out and be active. There are plenty of activities to keep everyone warm and having a great time. Winterfest began in 1979 and has grown into a big event along the West Michigan shoreline. This is an interactive festival with many participants getting involved from the very young to the old. Activities are indoors as well as outdoors.

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