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Tuesday, 14 June 2016 14:12

2016 Festival Guide: A Guide to Michigan’s Summer Shindigs

Written by  Eric Mitts
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If you’re itching for live music, beer tents, Porta-Potties and sunburns, Revue has got you covered. Here’s a guide to festivals happening in West Michigan and beyond. From music and film-focused to food-centric and more eclectically-themed bashes — here’s your guide to getting outside this summer.
 
 
 

Art

 
Art on the Mall
Kalamazoo
(269) 342-5059
June 3–4. Over 75 local artists have their works on-hand for this juried show that includes everything from fine art and jewelry to pottery and garden art.
 
First Friday featuring The Market presented by Avenue for the Arts
Grand Rapids
(616) 456-9944
June 3 and August 5. Running along South Division Avenue between Fulton and Cherry Streets, The Market overflows with vendors, artists and performers lining the sidewalks. The free event showcases local businesses and artisans, while encouraging community engagement.
 
Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Fair
Kalamazoo
(269) 349-7775
June 3–4. As the annual start to summer in Kalamazoo, the Fair will celebrate its 65th anniversary with the work of nearly 200 artists and a beer garden filling Bronson Park.
 
Festival of the Arts
Grand Rapids
(616) 459-1300
June 3–5. Grand Rapids’ biggest celebration of local art, music, beer and food is one of the longest-running festivals in the state. Completely free to the public, it features six music stages, plus theater, poetry, dance and much more.
 
West Michigan Chalk Art Festival
Byron Center
(616) 878-6029
June 16–18. Turning the streets themselves into art, this fest encourages everyone to get creative. In addition to handing out cash prizes to winners based on popular vote and judges’ critique, the free event also hosts a children’s competition.
 
Reeds Lake Arts Fest
Grand Rapids
June 18. Organized by the Grand Valley Artists — one of the oldest art groups in the Midwest — this festival hosts a large selection of artwork from Michigan artists in the historic Gaslight Village.
 
SOBO Arts Festival
Boyne
(231) 582-0526
June 24–25. The South Boyne Arts Festival aims to encompass all arts and create a completely interactive experience. From folk art to flash mobs, artists and attendees alike are asked to take part at several different. stations. Also look for this year’s new addition: the 1st Annual SOBO Chalk Out.
 
Bizarre Bazaar
Grand Rapids
June 25. A celebration of the unique culture of Eastown, Biz Baz runs along Wealthy Street with local artists and artisans selling their distinct creations. Original food choices, live music, and art happenings will also fill the event’s Hub Lot.
 
Grand Haven Art Festival
Grand Haven
(616) 842-4910
June 25–26. Transforming Washington Avenue into a chic outdoor gallery, this art festival connects artists and visitors near the Lake Michigan shore.
 
Lakeshore Art Festival
Muskegon
(231) 724-3176 
July 1–2. More than 50,000 people come to downtown Muskegon during this annual event featuring a free Community Canvas, as well as other arts, crafts, food, and family fun.
 
South Haven Art Fair
South Haven
(269) 637-1041
July 2–3. Set in the beautifully wooded Stanley Johnston Park, this juried art fair brings in artists from all over the country, as well as right here in West Michigan. Local food vendors will also be on-site for the community-centered, family-friendly event.
 
West Shore Art Fair
Ludington
(616) 419-8385
July 2–3. Over 100 artists fill Ludington’s Rotary Park with work from all types of media including photograpy, glass, fiber, sculpture, and more. The show also hosts art demonstrations, performances, food stations, and children’s art activities.
 
Black Arts Festival
Kalamazoo
(269) 349-1035
July 11–17. Celebrating its 30th anniversary, the Black Arts Festival returns with a goal of empowering the community. Organized by the Black Arts & Cultural Center, the fest will host a full week of events at several different locations around Kalamazoo, before concluding for its last two full days at LaCrone Park.
 
Sand Sculpture Contest
Grand Haven
(616) 842-4910
Aug. 13. Art really can be a day at the beach. Watch as participants shape the shoreline into castles, dragons, famous landmarks and more. You could also dig in yourself and compete for one of several prizes.
 
Art on the Riverfront
Grand Haven
(616) 844-7306
Aug. 20. Located on the boardwalk of Grand Haven’s municipal marina, this show displays works from regional artists right alongside the water.
 
ArtPrize
Grand Rapids
Sept. 21–Oct. 9. One of the biggest art events in the world, with nearly half a million visitors and over 1,500 entries every year, ArtPrize has revolutionized art in West Michigan. The fall event awards $720,000 in grants and prizes, while welcoming artists and art lovers from around the globe to our community.
 
 
 
Hatter Days Street Party
Holland
(616) 355-6422
June 11. Boasting “we’re all a little mad here,” this one-day party has everything from daredevil circus performers to a beer & cheese smackdown. Oh, and five specialty IPAs along with live music going all day and night.
 
Oddside Funk Fest
Grand Haven
(616) 935-7326
June 11. A celebration for one of the fastest growing breweries in Michigan, this all-day dance party will welcome The Mainstays (featuring members of Kalamazoo band Funktion) as well as host a silent disco.
 
Founders Fest
Grand Rapids
(616) 776-1195
June 18. Founders Fest overflows with thousands of beer lovers packing the street on Grandville Avenue right in front of the popular brewery. With live music on two stages, this year’s lineup includes: The Motet, Lee Fields & the Expressions, July Talk, Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band, The Main Squeeze, The Go Rounds, and more.
 
Lansing Beer Fest
Lansing
June 18. Offering over 100 craft beers from 25 Michigan Breweries, this festival in Lansing’s REO Town boasts a big selection. Also look out for the nearby “mobile food court” made up of local food trucks.
 
Lake Michigan Shore Wine Festival
Bridgman
(269) 925-6301
June 18. This coastal festival on Weko Beach brings award-winning wines and live music right to the Lake Michigan shore.
 
Traverse City Wine & Art Festival
Traverse City
(231) 421-1172
June 25. Over 100 wines from around the region are paired with local food from area chefs. The fest will also feature live music and fine art, including Grand Rapids artist Stephanie Schlatter’s Project 24: a year-long series honoring 24 Leelanau wineries through landscape paintings.
 
Waterfront Wine Festival
Harbor Springs
(231) 526-7999
June 25. Downtown Harbor Springs hosts wines from around Michigan and the world alongside samples of the area’s best gourmet dining.
 
America On Tap Grand Rapids
Grand Rapids
(203) 900-5566
July 16. A nationwide traveling fest featuring over 200 craft beers from across the country with live music and food vendors. Michigan microbrew purists should come celebrate as many area staples will be representing.
 
Suds on the Shore Beer & Wine Festival
Ludington
(231) 843-8593
Aug. 16. A place for craft beer and wine connoisseurs to mingle and share flavors, this event benefits the United Way of Mason County.
 
Microbrew & Music Festival
Traverse City
(231) 943-2929
Aug. 26–27. As its name suggests, this is the perfect combination of local craft beer and music. This year’s lineup includes Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, The Revivalists, and Traverse City’s own rising stars, The Accidentals.
 
Burning Foot Beer Festival
Muskegon
Aug. 27. Want a great summer pairing? How does an ice-cold craft beer in your hand with some warm sand between your toes sound? Organized by the Lakeshore Brewers Guild this one-day fest at Pere Marquette Park celebrates some of our area’s best brews, and some of Lake Michigan’s best views, all while raising money for charity.
 
Paw Paw Wine and Harvest Festival
Paw Paw
(269) 655-1111
Sept. 9–11. With the Paw Paw area now being called the Napa Valley of the Midwest, it all centers on the wine, but this three-day fest really has something for everyone. From grape stomping to fireworks, classic cars to carnival rides, and so much more, everyone in the family can find something to enjoy here.
20th Lemon Creek Winery Harvest Fest
Berrien Springs
(269) 471-1321
Sept. 10. Celebrating 20 years, Lemon Creek Winery will welcome fall with wine tasting, hay rides, live music and a farmer’s market.
 
 
Relax at Rosa
Grand Rapids
(616) 719-4610
Through Sept. 15. Eat to the beat with this free Thursday afternoon lunch series. Local musicians will take the stage at Rosa Parks Circle for short midday sets all summer, including Kari Lynch, An Dro, and others.
 
Buttermilk Jamboree
Delton
(269) 623-5555
June 10–12. A great showcase of regional musicians, Buttermilk benefits the Circle Pines Center, a nonprofit working towards peace, social justice and environmental cooperation. This year’s lineup includes local favorites The Crane Wives, Vox Vidorra, Ralston Bowles and Serita’s Black Rose.
 
Keloorah
Brooklyn
(517) 592-3848
June 10–11, Aug. 26–27. Born as a pre-party campout for the NASCAR events held at Michigan International Speedway each summer, Keloorah offers two weekends of music. The June dates skew alternative with Grouplove, Third Eye Blind, Elle King and others performing, while the August bill features country stars Kip Moore and Chase Rice.
 
Branch Out Campout
Bangor
June 10–11. A fusion of art and music, this two-day outdoor dance party will feature black light body-painting and art installations, with music from Unlimited Aspect, SoDown, Desmond Jones, and others.
 
The Stage at Kindleberger Summer Concert Series
Parchment
(269) 303-2793 
June 12–Aug. 28. This free Sunday concert series highlights Michigan artists including Ann Arbor folk outfit Dragon Wagon and Kalamazoo artists Who Hit John? and Megan Dooley.
 
Carnival of Chaos presents Rock Fest
Stanton
June 16–18. A gathering of rock, metal and EDM fans, this annual music and camping event also includes body suspension, pillow fights, burlesque shows, and more.
 
Summer Solstice Jazz Festival
East Lansing
(517) 319-6980
June 17–18. Celebrating 20 years, this festival aims to appreciate all styles of jazz. There’s everything from middle school ensembles to nationally-acclaimed avant-garde artists taking the stage and drawing thousands of jazz-lovers to the campus of MSU.
 
Hoodilidoo
Grand Junction
(929) 268-1700
June 17–19. Free spirits and chill vibes coalesce at the Willow Ranch for this jam-centric affair. Bands this year include Kalamazoo’s That Freak Quincy, The Electric Jug Band and others.
 
Spirit of the Woods Folk Festival
Brethren
(231) 477-5381 
June 18. Escape to the woods with the soothing sounds of folk music from all around the world. This year’s lineup features Damaru, an ensemble from India, as well as rising Grand Rapids artists Olivia Mainville & The Aquatic Troupe, and more.
 
B-93 Birthday Bash
Lowell
(616) 459-1919
June 18–19. Sponsored by popular radio station B-93.7 FM, this two-day festival brings some of the biggest names in country music to West Michigan. This year’s lineup includes headliners Chris Young and Granger Smith, as well as Battle Creek native Frankie Ballard and Grand Rapids band Gunnar & The Grizzly Boys.
 
Electric Forest
Rothbury
(888) 512-7469 
June 23–26. Heralded across the country as a festival experience unlike any other, this massively popular event sold out quickly earlier this year. The four-day mecca for electronic music fans features the likes of Bassnectar and Major Lazer, as well as Kalamazoo’s Greensky Bluegrass, among many others.
 
Celadon Summer Concert Series
Celadon
(231) 580-7611
June 23, July 21 and Aug. 18. This series is a free, family-friendly event featuring tunes from local acts like Big Dudee Roo and Steve Higler Band.
 
JuneGrass Festival
Lowell
June 24–25. Local and regional artists have been plucking and strumming at this festival for over 20 years. Rising Tennessee bluegrass band Flatt Lonesome will headline.
 
Common Ground Music Festival
Lansing
(517) 267-1502
July 5–10. One of the most diverse festivals in the state, Lansing’s Common Ground brings several major-label acts to the stage over four days. This year’s lineup includes country superstar Tim McGraw, Dierks Bentley, Jason DeRulo, A$AP Rocky, and alt-rock acts AWOLNATION and Milky Chance.
 
Kalamazoo Blues Fest
Kalamazoo
(269) 381-6514 
July 7–9. Got the blues? This long-running Southwest Michigan staple has got you covered with three days of guitar licks and good eats.
 
GRAM on the Green
Grand Rapids
(616) 831-2100
July 7–Aug. 11. A free Thursday night music series spotlighting the best in local music, taking place right outside the Grand Rapids Art Museum. Performers this year include Vox Vidorra, The Crane Wives, SuperDre and Grupo Aye.
 
Blissfest Music Festival
Harbor Springs
(231) 348-7047 
July 8–10. Blissfest is a gathering of roots music, art and culture. It features national festival favorites like Keller Williams, as well as Grand Rapids’ own Lindsay Lou & The Flatbellys, Delilah DeWylde & The Lost Boys, among many other Michigan bands.
 
D&W Fresh Market Picnic Pops
Belmont
(616) 454-9451 
July 14–29, Aug. 2 & 4. Held at Cannonsburg Ski Area on Thursdays and Fridays, this concert series by the Grand Rapids Symphony kicks off with its popular classical fireworks show, and features tributes to the music of Queen and The Beach Boys. It concludes with a special night honoring the late David Bowie (8/2) and a one-night-only performance with R&B legends Boyz II Men (8/4).
 
Pitchfork Music Festival
Chicago
July 15–17. Indie-music fans flock to Chicago for this annual pinnacle of critically-acclaimed artists. This year, Beach Boys legend Brian Wilson tops a diverse bill that also includes Carly Rae Jepson, Sufjan Stevens, Miguel and Beach House.
Faster Horses Festival
Brooklyn
July 15–17. A wildly popular camping and country music fest, this year’s lineup includes megstars Lady Antebellum, Alan Jackson and Eric Church, as well as Michigan native Jana Kramer.
 
Dunesville Bluegrass, Folk & Roots Music Festival
Lake Ann
July 22–24. Largely a platform for helping cultivate new and emerging artists in the greater West Michigan roots music scene, this still-new fest will welcome its fourth year with Watching For Foxes, The Change, The Gasoline Gypsies and more.
 
Mo Pop Festival
Detroit
July 23–24. Returning to West Riverfront Park in Detroit, this emerging music fest will celebrate its fourth year with headliners G-Eazy, M83 and HAIM.
Lollapalooza
Grant Park, Chicago
July 28–31. Attracting a massive crowd of 100,000 every year, it doesn’t get bigger than Lollapalooza. The iconic festival has expanded to four days this year, with big names like Radiohead, Red Hot Chili Peppers, LCD Soundsystem, J. Cole, Lana Del Rey, and Future topping the bill. General admission tickets sold out in under an hour earlier this year, but VIP passes and travel packages are still available.
 
Unity Christian Music Festival
Muskegon
(231) 773-3361 
Aug. 10–13. Unity is known for bringing the A-list of Christian music to West Michigan for a weekend of jamming, dancing and worship. This year’s line-up includes Newsboys, For King & Country, Switchfoot and RED.
 
Cowpie Music Fest
Caledonia
(616) 293-2675 
Aug. 12–13. No pun here. This fest takes over a real cow farm with onsite camping, family events and loads of Michigan bands taking the stage, including Joe Hertler & The Rainbow Seekers, Fauxgrass, and the Mark Lavengood Bluegrass Bonanza.
 
Hoxeyville Music Festival
Wellston
Aug. 19–21. Sprawling across 100 acres of farmland surrounded by Manistee National Forest, this naturally tranquil fest in Northern Michigan boasts some of the best from Michigan’s roots music scene, including two sets from Greensky Bluegrass, Traverse City phenom Billy Strings, and The Joshua Davis Quartet.
 
GRand Jazz Fest
Grand Rapids
Aug. 20–21. The only free weekend-long jazz fest in West Michigan. GRand fills downtown Grand Rapids with big band, Latin, contemporary and straight up jazz from its centralized location at Rosa Parks Circle.
 
Audiotree Music Festival
Kalamazoo
Aug. 20. Branching out as it’s grown, this fast-growing alternative music festival returns for its fourth year. Look out for the lineup announcement coming this summer.
 
Walk The Beat
Grand Haven
(616) 291-4215
Aug. 20. Downtown Grand Haven turns into one large, all-day concert with over 70 local bands playing at 35 different locations. Best Band winners will receive a promotional package valued at $10,000 and Best Song winners receive $2,500 cash.
 
Shoreline Jazz Festival
Muskegon
(231) 724-3100 
Aug. 26–28. Smooth jazz meets lake breezes at the Shoreline Jazz Festival, hosted by acclaimed flutist Alexander Zonjic at Muskegon’s Heritage Landing.
 
Wheatland Music Festival
Remus
(989) 967-8879
Sept. 9–11. For over 40 years the Wheatland Music Organization has continued to honor traditional arts and music with this annual summer festival. The nonprofit also organizes a series of music and cultural events throughout the year.
 
 
 
Dionysos Greek Festival
Kalamazoo
(269) 345-1830 
June 2–4. Opa! This family-friendly fixture kicks off summer in Kalamazoo every year with authentic Athenian cuisine and spirits. Live entertainment includes bellydancing, traditional Greek music, and contemporary rock bands.
 
Island Festival
Kalamazoo
June 16–18. The largest reggae festival in Michigan returns this June with classic Caribbean tastes and fresh grooves. Each year it brings thousands of people together for three days of peace, love and no worries.
 
Irish Festival
Kalamazoo
(269) 372-7332 
June 17–18. Now in its 16th year, Irish Fest will take over Kalamazoo’s Old Dog Tavern for the first time, featuring live Celtic music, step dancers, and more on both indoor and outdoor stages.
 
Michigan Irish Music Festival
Muskegon
(231) 683-2065 
Sept. 15–18. Everyone and everything is a little bit Irish here. Indulge in Irish cuisine, shop Irish goods and learn about the culture. Performers include: Scythian, Seamus Kennedy, Moxie Strings and more.
 
Yassou! Greek Cultural Festival
Grand Rapids
(616) 454-6563 
Aug. 26–28. Rejoice in all things Greek, from food and wine to music and dancing at this event held outside the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church.
 
 
 
National Asparagus Festival
Hart
(231) 861-8110 
June 10–12. Want a reason to eat more vegetables? Come out to Oceana County and see why they celebrate this delectable seasonal crop with food, music, arts, crafts and even a beauty pageant.
 
Cereal Festival
Battle Creek
(269) 420-4031
June 10–11. Eat at the “world’s largest breakfast table,” meet Tony The Tiger and other lifesize Kellogg’s mascots, or taste new flavors from Cereal City USA. It’s the best way to start your day — and your summer.
 
Taste of Muskegon
Muskegon
(231) 722-3171
June 17–18. All the best food and family fun will fill Muskegon’s Hackley Park. Also look out for the Powerboat Showcase making waves on the waters of Lake Michigan during the party.
 
National Cherry Festival
Traverse City
(800) 968-3380
July 2–9. Half a million people visit every year to experience the air show, parades, races, concerts and a whole slew of cherry-centric games and activities.
 
National Baby Food Festival
Fremont
(231) 924-2270
July 20–23. Known as the Baby Food Capital of the World, this city is home to Gerber Products Company. Highlights include baby-inspired activities such as a baby crawl, baby food eating contest, as well as music, food and family activities.
 
National Blueberry Festival
South Haven
(269) 637-5171 / 
Aug. 11–14. Blueberry pies, live music, kid-friendly activities, and an epic tractor pull. Sounds like a pretty sweet way to spend a summer weekend.
 
Kalamazoo Ribfest
Kalamazoo
(269) 344-0111 / 
Aug. 4–6. Celebrating its 30th anniversary, this showcase of some of the best ribs and barbecue sauces from local and national BBQ masters has brought in big name musical acts En Vogue and Vince Neil to headline its evening concerts.
 
Restaurant Week GR
Grand Rapids
(616) 459-8287 / 
Aug. 10–21. Try a new taste with special deals at area restaurants during this week-long celebration of the art of fine dining.
 
Grand Haven Salmon Festival
Grand Haven
(616) 842-4499 / 
Sept. 16–18. This event honors the annual salmon migration through local waterways with a gourmet cook-off, wine tasting, fishing contests, nature-themed kids’ crafts, and more.
  
  
 
Movies in the Park
Grand Rapids
(616) 719-4610 / 
June 3–Aug. 19. Taking place every other Friday, this summer series brings free films to a giant outdoor screen at Ah-Nab-Awen Park on the banks of the Grand River.
 
Japanese Animation Film and Art Expo
Grand Rapids
 
June 24–26. Billed as JAFAX 2.0: Reboot!, this year’s relaunch will feature guest artists from the fantastical worlds of anime, manga, and more.
 
Traverse City Film Festival
Traverse City
(231) 392-1134 / 
July 26–31. Co-founded by Academy Award-winning filmmaker and Michigan native Michael Moore, this film festival brings more than 200 movies from around the world to Northern Michigan every summer. It also hosts free showings of classic films on a giant inflatable screen overlooking the scenic Grand Traverse Bay.
 
 
 
Local First Street Party
Grand Rapids
(616) 808-3788 / localfirst.com/events/street-party
June 4. Presented by Founders Brewing Co. this one’s all about keeping it local. From the food to the music to the beer, it’s all Michigan, with The Voice finalist Joshua Davis headlining. The party starts at 3 p.m. outside Bistro Bella Vita and goes until midnight.
 
Gus Macker 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament
Grand Rapids
(231) 845-0324 / macker.com
June 4–5. The tournament originally launched in Lowell in 1974. Since then, it has expanded to more than 75 cities, including Grand Rapids, Muskegon and Ludington. Celebrate the tournament’s history and catch some 3-on-3 competitions.
 
Kalamazoo Pride
Kalamazoo
(269) 349-4234 / 
June 10–11. Promoting diversity, understanding and equality, Pride is the Kalamazoo Gay and Lesbian Resource Center’s annual summer event. It features live music, DJs, drag performers, specialty brews and more.
 
Rockford Start of Summer Festival
Rockford
(616) 447-7625 / therockfordnetwork.com/start-of-summer.php
June 9–12. An annual event for more than 40 years, this festival features a weekend of carnival rides, food, games, music, fireworks and more.
 
Vicksburg Old Car Festival
Vicksburg
(269) 649-1919 / vicksburg-michigan.com
June 10–11. This historic festival features hundreds of classic cars lent by residents looking to show off their vintage pride. Attendees are also treated to live music and an ice cream social.
 
GRIDLIFE Midwest
South Haven
gridlife.com/midwest
June 10–12. A hybrid evolution of electronic music fest, car show and full-blown motorsports competition, this three-day event takes it all to the limit. Watch drift track and other racers duel by day, then rage all night with high-profile DJs like Paper Diamond, Savoy and Herobust.
 
Feast of the Strawberry Moon
Grand Haven
(616) 842-0700 / tri-citiesmuseum.org
June 11–12. Try out 18th century living along the banks of the Grand River. Period dress, encampment and entertainment help to take the visitor back to the fur-trading period of the early 1800s. Enjoy authentic food, entertainment and even military battles.
 
Spring Lake Heritage Festival
Spring Lake
(616) 842-1393 / 
June 13–18. Celebrate the historical heritage of Spring Lake with a dog walk, family fun night and community picnic. This festival is also host to an ice cream social, flea market, car show, golf scramble and more.
 
Freedom Cruise
Grand Rapids
(616) 887-7210 / 
June 14–18. This five-day celebration raises funds for Grand Rapids veterans with a variety of happenings. The event features an honor ride, golf classic, some muscle cars and live music from the 97 WLAV-FM Blues and Cruise Series at the Deltaplex.
 
Greater Grand Rapids Pride Festival
Grand Rapids
(616) 458-3511 / 
June 17–19. Celebrating the LGBTQ community, this year’s Pride kicks off with its 2nd Annual White Party on Friday night and continues all weekend with the 1st Annual Grand Rapids Pride Concert on the Calder. Watch for full lineup details coming soon.
 
Honoring Saganing Traditional Powwow
Standish
(800) 884-6271 / 
June 18–19. A celebration of Native American culture, this all-ages event features traditional dancing and drumming, as well as contests and fireworks.
 
Harborfest
South Haven
(800) 764-2836 / 
June 16–19. Celebrate historically nautical Southwest Michigan at a maritime festival hosting a beer garden for the adults, a craft and food fair for the entire family, and plenty of children’s activities.
 
Muskegon Heights Festival
Muskegon Heights
(231) 578-2099 / 
June 16–18. This just-for-fun community celebration features a carnival, food vendors, a flea market, sports tournaments, live music, a parade, a 5k run and more.
 
Wizard of Oz Festival
Ionia
(616) 527-1420 / 
June 17–18. Ionia transforms into the magical land of Oz yet again, complete with full Technicolor. Meet Dorothy and the crew while browsing the yellow brick road for local art, antiques and movie memorabilia.
 
Beach Survival Challenge
Grand Haven
(231) 206-1185 / 
June 18. This event is a day filled with music, food, fun and the sun. Events include beach soccer, ultimate frisbee, tug of war and an obstacle course on the beach.
 
Montcalm County 4-H Fair
Greenville
616-754-7884 / Art Festivals
June 25–July 2. With a large number of events, such as an antique tractor pull, unique motor sports demolition derby and a livestock auction, Montcalm County offers visitors a healthy selection of rural events.
 
Grand River Water Festival
Grand Rapids
(616) 802-7502 / Art Festivals
June 26. This free one-day event at Comstock Riverside Park features all-Michigan musicians, including Seth & May, Rachael Davis, Fauxgrass and others. In between bands, speakers from environmental groups will discuss and raise awareness on water quality issues affecting our area. Totally eco-friendly, you can even paddle your kayak there!
 
Field of Flight Air Show and Balloon Festival
Battle Creek
(269) 962-0592 / Art Festivals
June 29–July 4. Dozens of hot air balloons from around the world join forces with hypersonic jets, food, fair rides and other family fun.
 
Berlin Fair
Marne
(616) 677-1140 / Art Festivals
July 4–9. With a focus on youth and agricultural-focused events, this year’s Berlinfest will also have rides, food, a carnival, live shows and more.
 
Kindleberger Summer Festival of the Performing Arts
Parchment
(269) 303-2793 / Art Festivals
July 6–10. Framed around the annual family musical and youth play, this fest features car shows, a 5k, a parade, food vendors and more.
 
Riverwalk Fest
Lowell
(616) 897-9161 / Art Festivals
July 7–9. This year’s event stands by tried and true festival activities: arts, crafts, motorcycles, kayaks, duck race, fireworks and more.
 
Muskegon County Youth Fair
Fruitport
231.724.4739
July 24–30. This fair offers an array of different contests for animals such as horses, rabbits, goats and more. Baked goods contests, a talent show and different fair games will also take place.
 
Ottawa County Fair
Holland
(616) 399-4904 / Art Festivals
July 25–30. Visit Ottawa and take in some of the craziest motorsports around with two-wheel trucks, demolition derbies and flaming buggies.
 
Grand Haven Coast Guard Festival
Grand Haven
(616) 846-5940 / Art Festivals
July 29–Aug. 7. Honoring the men and women of the United States Coast Guard, this festival celebrates with ship tours, live music, food, a carnival and street dancing throughout Grand Haven.
 
Michigan Pirate Festival
Grand Haven
(616) 842-5560 / Art Festivals
Aug. 3–9. Arr matey, get thee to Grand Haven for the Ninth Annual Pirate Festival. The largest event of its kind in the state, this all-ages swashbuckling soiree puts visitors face-to-face with buccaneers, mermaids, minstrels, merchants, and even hidden treasure.
 
Red Barns Spectacular
Hickory Corners
(269) 377-7756 / Art Festivals
Aug. 6. This massive auto spectacular hosts well over 1,000 vehicles. From classic hotrods to antique campers and wooden boats, its a truly diverse show.
 
West Michigan Renaissance Festival
Grand Rapids
(616) 207-9380 / Art Festivals
Aug. 6–7. Travel back in time to the era of Queen Elizabeth through crafts, food, clothing and more. This all-ages event aims to educate and promotes a variety of on-site vendors and period-based entertainment.
 
Kalamazoo County Fair
Kalamazoo
(269) 349-9791 / Art Festivals
Aug. 8–13. Magicians, carnival rides and hundreds of animals fill the Kalamazoo Expo center.
 
Del Shannon Days
Coopersville
(616) 947-2055 / Art Festivals
Aug. 12–13. This event honors legendary rock singer Del Shannon, who grew up in Coopersville and scored a chart-topping hit in 1961 with “Runaway.” The big event is the car show, which rounds out the five-day event.
 
International Summerfest
Battle Creek
(269) 420-4031 / Art Festivals
Aug. 13. This event is an ethnic food festival with family-friendly entertainment. Relax and try some new food while listening to live music.
 
Calhoun County Fair
Marshall
(269) 781-8161 / Art Festivals
 
Aug. 13–20. Boasting the longest-running county fair in the state, the Calhoun County Fair is a week-long fest filled with a number of gearhead events like tractor pulls, races, derbys and motocross.
Michigan Fiber Festival
Allegan
(269) 948-2497 / Art Festivals
Aug. 20–21. This is one of the Midwest’s largest fiber festivals and hosts an array of shows, competitions, workshops, animals, shopping and more.
 
Arts and Drafts Festival
Norton Shores
(231) 799-6802 / Art Festivals
Aug. 20. This fest is host to the Arts & Dash 5K Run, arts and crafts section, children’s activity area and a beverage tent with live music.
 
Hastings Summerfest
Hastings
Aug. 26–28. Fun in the sun gets active with the Backwoods Triathlon, roller hockey tournament, soap box derby and other outdoor events toasting to the end of summer.
 
28th Street Metro Cruise
Grand Rapids
Aug. 26–27. All types of vehicles are included in the cruise: hot rods, low riders, muscle cars, performance cars, classics, antiques, even motorcycles.
 
Allegan County Fair
Allegan
(269) 673-6501 / Art Festivals
Sept. 9–17. This has been the city’s biggest attraction since 1852. It broke attendance records last fall, and has plans for an even bigger lineup this year.
 
Tribute on the Grand
Grand Rapids
Sept. 10. A new addition to the festival season, this one-day event, sponsored by Founders Brewing, will feature special beers, a beer tent and a beer dinner, as well as local, regional and tribute bands.
 
Eastown Streetfair
Grand Rapids
Sept. 10. For over 40 years this event has played host to countless local bands, as well as tons of food and an array of artisans and artists selling local goods.

 

 


REVUE Best of the West 2016

What's your favorite local festival? Nominate/vote for it in Revue's Best of the West Readers Poll! Voting continues through June 25.

----> revuewm.com/bestofthewest

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