More Calendar — August
Saginaw Chippewa Tribal Annual Powwow
Mount Pleasant, August 2–4
The Saginaw Chippewa tribe has history. Rightfully so—occupying Central Michigan for more than a century, the tribe shares their colorful heritage at Michigan’s largest powwow. Zealous feather headdresses atop enthusiastic drummers create a beat for expressive dancers at a festival complete with authentic food and crafts (800/225-8172; sagchip.org).
Waterfront Arts Festival
Escanaba, August 3
Paintings, glassworks, pottery, jewelry and other arts come to life (and go on sale) in artist demonstrations. Live music in the band shell drifts over the juried festival, which also includes a young artists’ market, food vendors and an art raffle (906/786-3833; bonifasarts.org).
Abbott’s Magic Get-Together
Colon, August 7–10
World-acclaimed magicians perform impressive sleight of hand, illusions and gimmicks; learn the tricks from the masters. A super sale on books, a tour of the Colon cemetery and a talent contest adds to the magic (269/432-3235; magicgettogether.com).
National Blueberry Festival
South Haven, August 8–11
Grab a basket: Blueberries burst, ready to pick, then make their way into pies, pancakes, popcorn and brats. Celebrate 50 sweet years with a pie-eating contest, carnival games and free concerts (800/764-2836; blueberryfestival.com).
The Award Winning 12th Annual River Raisin Jazz Festival
Monroe, August 8–11
Peaceful harmonies float from free stages over listeners at St. Marys Park. More than 60 artists display their works at the Downtown Fine Art Fair (800/252-3011; riverraisinjazzfestival.com).
Charlevoix Waterfront Art Fair
Charlevoix, August 10
One hundred artists and 25,000 visitors make up Michigan’s second oldest juried art show. Pay it forward: All proceeds from this lakeside festival fund art education for kids (231/547-2675; charlevoixwaterfrontartfair.org).
Les Cheneaux Islands Antique Wooden Boat Show & Festival of Arts
Hessel, August 10
Vintage canoes, sailboats and cruisers breeze into Hessel’s harbor from all corners of the country. Live music coasts over guests browsing works by juried artisans to complete the day (906/484-2821; lchistorical.org).
Upper Peninsula State Fair
Escanaba, August 12–18
A large Ferris wheel spins, marking the site of the fair. Moos, oinks and cock-a-doodle-doos echo throughout the grounds and the aroma of batter sizzling in deep fat fryers fills the air (906/786-4011; upstatefair.org).
Wild Blueberry Festival
Paradise, August 16–18
Get your blueberry fix—the juicy fruit stars at a brunch, bake sale and pie-eating contest. All full? Meander through an arts-and-crafts fair before winding down for the evening with a wagon ride and live music (906/492-3219; exploringthenorth.com).
Michigan Renaissance Festival
Holly, August 17–September 29 (weekends; Labor Day and Friday, September 27)
Jousting knights, mythical mermaids and playful jesters set the scene with themed weekends. The 16th-century comes to life with a bite into a giant turkey leg and the encompassing sound of medieval music (800/601-4848; michrenfest.com).
Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Brooklyn, August 18
The roar of revving engines fills the Irish Hills as cars zoom by on the 2-mile track in the grand finale of Michigan’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (800/354-1010; mispeedway.com).
Marquette Area Blues Fest
Marquette, August 30–September 1
Celebrating 10 years, the festival kicks off with a free Friday night “thank you” concert for blues fans. Dancing, free workshops, a beer tent and food vendors accompany a full line-up of spiritual songs and rhyming melodies (800/544-4321; marquetteareabluessociety.com).
Detroit Jazz Festival
Detroit, August 30–September 2
Four days, five stages and 100 acts ooze soothing melodies at zero cost. Add late-night jams, fireworks and food vendors for a relaxing Labor Day weekend (313/447-1248; detroitjazzfest.com).
Harrisville, August 31–September 1
Four-part harmonies from barbershop quartets and Sweet Adelines pour over visitors venturing through the arts-and-crafts show. Colorful floats, clowns and antique tractors make their way through the streets during the Saturday afternoon parade (989/724-7197; harrisvilleartscouncil.com).
More Calendar — September
Mackinac Bridge Walk
St. Ignace to Mackinaw City, September 2
Lace up your walking shoes and join a fleet of pedestrians on the annual 5-mile walk across the Mighty Mac, the world’s fifth longest suspension bridge (906/643-7600; mackinacbridge.org).
U.P. Craft Beer Week
Breweries of the Upper Peninsula unite to provide beer-lovers with a full weeks worth of tasting events concluding with the Michigan Guild’s U.P. Fall Fest on September 7 (upcraftbeerweek.com).
NHL Prospects Tournament
Traverse City, September 5–9
After the first NHL lockout in 15 years, the Detroit Red Wings are taking back the ice at Centre Ice Arena. Watch eight teams from around the country compete in four hockey-filled days (231/933-7465; centreice.org).
36th Annual Hispanic Festival
Grand Rapids, September 6–7
Bridging the gap between Michigan and 21 Spanish-speaking countries, the largest Hispanic festival in West Michigan increases the understanding of Hispanic culture through cuisine, art and music (616/304-2759; hispanic-center.org).
Owosso Tractor Parts Antique Tractor Show and Parade
St. Ignace, September 6–7
Hundreds of vintage tractors roar as they roll over the Mackinac Bridge and onto the streets of downtown St. Ignace. Get a close-up look at each ride throughout the day at Little Bear Arena (888/530-4554; bobstractorpartscorner.com).
Paw Paw Wine and Harvest Festival
Paw Paw, September 6–8
Juices squish through toes in the Grape Stomp at this festival complete with live music, a parade and car show. Don’t miss out on wine tastings and winery tours—the star of the weekend (269/655-1111; wineandharvestfestival.com).
62nd Annual Posen Potato Festival
Posen, September 6–9
Polka dances, potato displays and dish contests and plenty of potato pancakes bring out the Polish in anyone. Continue the fun with carnival rides, arts-and-crafts shows and a grand parade (989/766-8128; posenchamber.com).
Suttons Bay, September 7–8
Runners and walkers race through 3.2 miles of rolling hills and vineyard rows laced with plump, ripe grapes. Cross the finish line and join the wine tour for a taste of 23 Leelanau Peninsula wineries. Each stop includes a pour and food pairing (lpwines.com).
Historic Home Tour
Marshall, September 7–8
Marshall has history and is ready to show it off. A 50-year tradition continues: peek inside more than 20 historical homes, museums and businesses. Don civil war era attire for the costume ball (269/781-8544; marshallhistoricalsociety.org).
Tulipanes Latino Art & Film Festival
Holland, September 10–15
Explore Latino culture through film, music and dance presentations. Join in on the festivities with wine and tapas after a movie or browsing through local masterpieces at the art sale (800/506-1299; tulipanes.org).
Richard Crane Memorial Truck Show
St. Ignace, September 13–15
Customized tractors and semitrucks decorate downtown streets by day. As the sun sets the vehicles come to life to light the way in a parade across the Mackinac Bridge (906/643-8087; saintignace.org).
Taste of Traverse City Festival
Traverse City, September 13–15
Michigan’s Cherry Capital offers more than just cherries, making it a food lover’s haven. Area chefs, restaurants and shops merge in a weekend complete with cooking demonstrations, workshops as well as plenty of food and drink tastings (231/714-4646; tasteoftraversecity.com).
Hops and Props on the River
Manistee, September 14
Classic wooden boats cruise the Manistee River Channel as spectators sip on Michigan craft beers and wine. Live entertainment sets the mood for the festival (877/626-4783; visitmanistee.com).
Grand Rapids, September 18–October 6
With 1,500 artworks at various venues, which will be the top masterpiece? You be the judge! Wander through the ArtPrize district, then log on, shoot a text or download the app to cast your vote for the winner (616/214-7910; artprize.org).
Shattered: Contemporary Sculpture in Glass
Grand Rapids, September 18–January 5
Artists worldwide shatter traditional understandings of glass and sculpture. Discover the look and meaning behind modern day glass art at a Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park exhibit in conjunction with ArtPrize (888/957-1580; meijergardens.org).
Frankenmuth, September 19–22
Imported beer from Germany flows from frosty mugs while bands serenade dancers with traditional tunes. A dachshund race with 50–100 short and stout dogs waddling to the finish line is a highlight of the weekend (989/652-3378; frankenmuthfestivals.com).
Chrysanthemums and More!
Grand Rapids, September 20–October 27
Chrysanthemum plants burst into color—pinks, oranges, reds and yellows—with the autumn harvest. The bright flowers fill Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park. Get a glimpse on a walking tour or hop on the tram ride (888/957-1580; meijergardens.org).
Oscoda Paul Bunyan Days
Oscoda, September 21–22
Put on a flannel shirt and blue jeans in honor of a lumberjack legend that lives on with chainsaw woodcarving, barbecue competitions and kid’s relay races. Take a break by moseying through the arts-and-crafts fair, classic-car show or by grabbing a plate of grub (989/739-7322; oscodachamber.com).
Orphan Car Show
Ypsilanti, September 22
Automobile buffs and car lovers roll into Riverside Park to see nearly 300 small and mini orphan cars and trucks. Get a history lesson—all of the vehicles are no longer in production (734/482-5200; ypsiautoheritage.org).
Mackinac Island Restaurant Week
Mackinac Island, September 23–29
Gather a group of friends and eat your way through the week. Ten Mackinac restaurants create special pre-fixe menus that highlight the island’s premier dining (800/454-5227; mackinacislandrestaurantweek.org).
Four Flags Area Apple Festival
Niles, September 26–29
Have a love for all things apple? Compete in baking, eating, growing and peeling contests. Not feeling competitive? Kick back for a parade, circus rides and an arts-and-crafts show (269/683-8870; fourflagsapplefestival.org).
Northwood University International Auto Show
Midland, September 27–29
Ford or Rolls Royce, Chevrolet or Maserati: New automobiles of all shapes, sizes, makes and models cruise into Northwood’s campus along with 50,000 visitors for the 50th anniversary of this student-run car show (989/837-4823; northwood.edu/autoshow).
Chelsea, September 28
Only the wicked are chosen—the wickedly artistic. National artists brew creations to be sold in a treasure trove of Halloween mastery at the Chelsea Fairground (269/553-1852; ghoultidegathering.com).
More Calendar — October
13th Annual Fiber Festival
Traverse City, October 4–5
Grab your knitting needles! Artists who work with knits, yarns and fibers of all kinds showcase their woven masterpieces including clothing, tapestries, handbags, quilts, yarns and fiber sculpture (231/256-2131; traversecity.com).
Somewhere in Time Weekend
Mackinac Island, October 4–6
Movie aficionados fill the Grand Hotel to experience a weekend inside the filming location of the cinematic classic Somewhere In Time. Visit with cast and crew, get in character for a costume promenade and cocktail receptions, learn the production process and of course, sit for a screening (800/334-7263; grandhotel.com).
Bite of Beaver Island and Island Boodle 5K Run
Beaver Island, October 5
A race to the finish line doesn’t come without reward. Beyond the 3.2 miles of serene Lake Michigan scenery, samplings of local signature dishes make this 5K totally worth it (231/448-2505; beaverisland.org).
The Fall Festival at Schuss Village
Bellaire, October 5
Smoky barbecue wafts through the air and caramel on apples stick to the teeth of patrons wandering over to pick up a cold brew from Short’s Brewing Company. Hop on a chairlift ride for a lush view of the fiery fall colors illuminating Shanty Creek or keep the family entertained with kids’ games (231/533-8621; shantycreek.com).
Grand Valley Renaissance Festival
Allendale, October 5–6
Get in some garb, grab a sword and ride back to the Renaissance era. Students disguised as chivalrous knights, amiable ladies and animated pirates are stepping up to put on fighting demonstrations while vendors sell traditional arts and crafts, food and drink (616/331-2345; gvrenfest.org).
Great Waters Festival
St. Ignace, October 5–6
Spectators and participators alike join forces at a fest full of activity. Watch an impressive stilt walker navigate the streets or a skilled pumpkin carver create a work of art. Join in with competitions like the Apple Road Race and the Great Pumpkin Roll (800/338-6660; stignace.com).
Color Tour Train
Cadillac, Boyne, Mt. Pleasant, Owosso, Claire; October 5, 12, 19
As wheels clack against railroad ties brilliant fall colors whirl by. Sit back and enjoy the view on the way to a quaint town where you can spend the afternoon shopping in boutiques and sightseeing before viewing more autumn landscapes on the trip back. Travel from Cadillac to Boyne (October 5), Mt. Pleasant to Cadillac (October 12) or Owosso to Claire (October 19) (989/725-9464; michigansteamtrain.com).
Great Lakes Lighthouse Festival
Alpena, October 10–13
Tour 11 lighthouses a whole new way: Zoom overhead in a helicopter or glide over waves for a sailor’s sight. Back on land climb many of the lighthouses and enjoy live entertainment, lighthouse exhibits and nautical vendors round out the weekend (586/566-1603; lighthousefestival.org).
Charlevoix Apple Festival
Charlevoix, October 11–13
Find the flavors of fall—apples, pumpkins, squash, honey—at this fest. When you’ve had your fill, pony rides, a petting zoo and face painting amp up the action (231/547-2101; charlevoix.org).
Tecumseh’s Appleumpkin Festival
Tecumseh, October 12–13
Kids get a kick out of rides, carnival games and make-it-take-it crafts giving adults time to wander through the Antique Street Fair and Flea Market and arts-and-crafts show. Don’t want the fun to end? Take the short drive to Kapnick Orchard’s Apple Festival (517/424-6003; downtowntecumseh.com).
Mackinac Island Music Festival
Mackinac Island, October 17–19
Local and national touring musicians join forces for a weekend of musical genres including folk, country, rock, blues and jazz. In it’s ninth year, the music festival’s theme, The Heart of a Woman, focuses celebrates some of the best female musicians (800/454-5227; mackinacislandmusicfestival.org).
Michigan’s Big Country Fest
Frankenmuth, October 18–19
Ten-gallon hats, leather cowboy boots and flannel shirts signal it’s time for some down-home fun; grab some barbecue and chomp away. Work off dinner with a line dance to live country tunes (989/652-8008; bigcountryfest.com).
Frankfort Film Festival
Frankfort, October 24–27
From “best of show” on worldwide screens such as Cannes, Venice and London’s film fests to the Garden Theater, about 15 films play over four days (231/352-7561; frankfortgardentheater.com).
Food, Wine & All That Jazz
Grand Rapids, October 25
Soothing sounds of brassy jazz music fills the Public Museum while guests sip from 300 wine and beer selections and nibble on gourmet food samples (800/442-2771; wgvu.org).
Mackinac Island Halloween Weekend
Mackinac Island, October 25–26
The whole island gets into the spooky spirit with downtown trick-or-treating, slashed prices in all downtown shops, the Haunts of Mackinac Tour and nighttime Halloween pub parties complete with live music (800/454-5227; mackinacisland.org).
Boos, Brews and Brats
Manistee, October 28
Fall food, fun and spooks merge into one day full of trickery. Trick-or-treat downtown before zombie walking (or running) through a 5K and finish the day with a costume contest and crisp, autumn brew (877/626-4783; visitmanisteecounty.com).
For More Information, contact:
Alpena Convention & Visitors Bureau (989/354-4181 or 800/425-7362; www.alpenacvb.com).
Battle Creek/Calhoun County Visitors Bureau (269/962-2240 or 800/397-2240; www.battlecreekvisitors.org).
Benzie County Visitors Bureau (231/882-5801 or 800/882-5801; www.visitbenzie.com).
Charlevoix Area Convention & Visitors Bureau (231/547-2101 or 800/367-8557; www.charlevoixlodging.com).
Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau (313/202-1800 or 800/338-7648; www.visitdetroit.com).
Experience Grand Rapids/Kent County Convention & Visitors Bureau (616/459-8287 or 800/678-9859; www.experiencegr.com).
Four Flags Area Council on Tourism (269/684-7444; www.fourflagsarea.org).
Grand Haven Area Convention & Visitors Bureau (800/303-4092; www.visitgrandhaven.com).
Greater Paw Paw Area Chamber of Commerce (269/657-5395; www.pawpawchamber.com).
Holland Area Convention & Visitors Bureau (800/506-1299 or 616/394-0000; www.holland.org).
Jackson County Convention & Visitors Bureau (517/764-4440 or 800/245-5282; www.visitjacksonmi.com).
Lenawee County Conference & Visitors Bureau (517/263-7747 or 800/536-2933; www.visitlenawee.com).
Mackinaw Area Visitors Bureau (231/436-5664 or 800/666-0160; www.mackinawcity.com).
Midland County Area Convention & Visitors Bureau (989/839-9775 or 888/464-3526; www.visitgreatlakesbay.org).
Petoskey Area Visitors Bureau (800/845-2828 or 231/348-2755; www.petoskeyarea.com).
St. Ignace Visitors Bureau (906/643-6950 or 800/338-6660; www.stignace.com).