Mackinac Island is home to three fabulous Northern Michigan festivals each summer, as well as numerous annual sports events—most notably foot and boat races. These Northern Michigan events are special in their own right, but the backdrop of Mackinac Island makes them incredible. From boating to honoring the island’s favorite food, there’s a Mackinac Island festival or event that will make your Northern Michigan vacation to the island all the better.
Lilac Festival — June 6th to June 15th
The Lilac Festival is one of the first and largest summer festivals to happen on the Island. The festival attracts thousands of visitors each year to the beautiful island for the numerous festival events. Watch the coronation of the Lilac Festival Queen, learn about equestrian culture, go wine tasting, or view a pony show.
Experience the Lilac Festival through video:
Festival of the Horse — August 8th and 9th
On Mackinac Island the horse is the king of transportation. The Festival of the Horse honors the magnificent animal with a line-up of events celebrating it’s history on the Island. Take a carriage ride through downtown Mackinac, or watch a professional horse demonstration. The festival will showcase over 18 different breeds of horses that call Mackinac Island home.
Fudge Festival — August 22nd and August 23rd
Home to the best fudge in America, the Mackinac island Fudge Festival celebrates the delicious and creamy treat with a weekend of sweet events. Watch a demonstration on the art of fudge making. Or attend a dinner filled with fine foods that are meant to compliment the dreamy historic treat. The perfect festival for any vacationer, but especially those with a sweet tooth.
- The Lilac 10k — June 7th: This race coincides with the Lilac Festival June 6th through 15th. The race will be held on Saturday, June 7th at 9:30am with the Kids race being held at 11am.
- Mackinac Eight Mile — September 6th: The eight mile run walk starts at 9:30am with the Kids fun run starting at 11:30am.
- Great Turtle Trail-Run — October 25th: The 5.7 trail-run starts at 11:30am with the half-marathon run starting at 11:45am.
Learn More and Register for the Above Races at RunMackinac.com.
Head up to Mackinac to catch one of these boat races this summer:
- Mackinac Island 4th of July Race — July 5th: Sponsored by the Pink Pony, this family fun race invites all sailboats to join them.
- Bells Beer Bayview to Mackinac Race — July 12th–15th: Bayview Yacht Club hosts this spectacular fresh water sailing event. Hosting over 250 yachts that will race from Port Huron to Mackinac Island, this historic event is filled with the excitement of the challenge.
- Round the Island Race — July 16th
- Mackinac to Manitoulin Race — July 17th–19th
- Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac — July 19th–22nd. Read about the Race to Mackinac here, or find the best places along Lake Michigan to watch the race.
Find More Information on These and Other Events at MackinacIsland.org.
Women’s Wellness and Wee Bit O’ Wine Weekend
On Friday, October 17th, enjoy captivating health and wellness seminars, a local art show, yoga, spa treatments, great food, a Cruise for a Cause, and fabulous shopping. Our key note speaker is the First Lady of Michigan, Sue Snyder. The proceeds go to Mackinac Island’s Community Cancer Fund, which is designed to help island residents who are battling cancer to defray their cost. Tickets to the event are available at MyNorthTickets.com: