Kalamazoo Farmers Market
Where: 1204 Bank St., Kalamazoo
When: May-November: Saturdays 7 a.m.-2 p.m.; June – October: Tuesdays and Thursdays 7 a.m.-2 p.m.
Indulge in a Saturday morning breakfast at this market. While you're strolling through the Kalamazoo Farmers Market, go for a fair trade coffee and sweet or savory crepe from Crepes By the Lakes, one of the market's newest vendors. Featuring a large selection of fresh fruits and veggies, it's also got chocolates, jams, tamales, salsas and more. Support the city's arts scene at Handmade Kalamazoo, which features products by local artists and artisans.
Fulton Street Farmers Market
Where: 1147 E Fulton St., Grand Rapids
When: January-April: Saturdays 10 a.m.-1 p.m.; May -December: Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
Originally established in 1922, the Fulton Street Farmers Market (then known as the "East Side Market") has gone through several transformations since its founding. What you'll find today is a thriving scene with 38 vendors offering everything from honey and eggs to flavored pastas and artisan breads. Cooking up a weekend dinner for friends? Pick up some quality meats from S & S Lamb LLC—it has lamb, beef, pork, chicken, duck and rabbit.
Ada Village Farmers Market
Where: Ada Community Reformed Church, 7239 Thornapple River Dr., Ada
When: June-October: Tuesdays 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
At the Ada Farmers Market, more than 35 vendors present an abundance of treats including fudge, specialty cheeses and even skin care products. Local goes beyond groceries here to include musical entertainment, too. Check out the market's website for updates on this summer's lineup of tunes, including folk, bluegrass, jazz, blues and more. You'll also find a kid-friendly environment at the market. Bring the little ones for some face painting and other fun activities.
Holland Farmers Market
Where: 150 W 8th St., Holland
When: Mid-May to mid-December: Wednesdays and Saturdays 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
If you're interested in honing your culinary skills, check out the Holland Farmers Market's on-going Chef Series, happening every Saturday at 10 a.m., through Sept. 13. On Aug. 23, Austin Gresham from Butch's Dry Dock will show you how to prepare a three-course meal—made with all local ingredients from the market. In addition to goods provided by nearly 70 vendors, there's also a food court at the market with a variety of eats, from tacos and pad thai to hot dogs and fresh-squeezed lemonade.
Muskegon Farmers Market
Where: 700 Yuba Street, Muskegon
When: April 30 – Dec. 31: Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays 6 a.m.-3 p.m.
The Muskegon Farmers Market is no less diverse as the others. At the end of your visit, your bag might be filled with anything from flowers and loose-leaf teas to pies and scented candles. There's also a flea market for collector-types on a treasure hunt. After hours, come check out work by fine arts and craft vendors (Wednesdays from 5-8 p.m. until Aug. 20).
Grand Rapids has become known for its vibrant and ever-growing restaurant scene. The fifth annual Grand Rapids Restaurant Week gives locals and visitors a fun (and somewhat frugal) way to enjoy favorites and sample some new spots. From Aug. 13-24, more than 60 participating restaurants—including Reserve Wine & Food, Bistro Bella Vita and Rockwell Republic—will feature three-course menus for $28. This year's theme is "Perfect Pairings." Come find out which wines, beer, spirits and coffees are the ideal complement to a variety of dishes.
At the end of this month, indulge your foodie tendencies in numerous ways at the annual Taste of Traverse City Festival. Taking place on Aug. 30 from 12-4 p.m., this event features cooking demonstrations, culinary merchandise, tastings from local restaurants and more. Get your tickets at tasteoftraversecity.com. A specialty attraction this year is a dinner featuring former White House Executive Chef Walter Scheib, held at the Grand Traverse Resort and Space. Featuring four courses inspired by the favorite dishes of past presidents, the dinner will take place Aug. 30 from 6:30-9 p.m.