Northern Michigan Events: Full of music, food, art and outdoor activities, the Petoskey area harbors many of the things we love about Northern Michigan. Just a short drive from Traverse City, Petoskey is easily accessed. So check out our list of ten things to do in the wonderful Petoskey area and plan your weekend trip Up North!

Rent a canoe or saddle up a horse!

Northern Michigan summers are all about spending time on the water, so this week make like the French-Canadian voyageurs of yesteryear, and adventure out in a canoe down Petoskey’s Bear River. Rent either a kayak or canoe from Bear River Canoe Livery, and float down the easy flowing Bear River for a few hours- make sure to  look out for wildlife like turtles, beavers, and ducks.

Bear River Canoe Livery: 231.347.9038. Please call in advance for reservations.

If boats aren’t your preferred mode of transportation, head over to the Bay Harbor Equestrian Center, in Bay Harbor just a short drive from Petoskey, and try out the horse!. Lessons, clinics, and workshops are all offered at the extensive and world-class facility, which caters to a wide variety of riding disciplines. The Center is open to the public all year round, and says “Come and visit us and see for yourself Bay Harbor Equestrian Center’s commitment to excellence in horsemanship throughout northern Michigan.”

For more information visit

The Odawa Casino Weekly Car and Motorcycle Show

Thought not of a traditional genre, the cars and motorcycles on display at Odawa Casino’s weekly car and motorcycle show are art in their own right.  Odawa Casino hosts this free event every Thursday from 5-8 p.m., thru August 31st, so take the automobile enthusiast in your life to see some rare beauties at this Petoskey entertainment venue.

Find out more information at

Take a Historical Tour through Charlevoix

Head north to Charlevoix, just a quick drive from Traverse City, to learn more about Northern Michigan’s rich history while enjoying a stroll through the idyllic town. The Beaver Island Boat Company will offer their Charlevoix Historic Walking Tour beginning June 20, every Wednesday-Saturday at 1:15 p.m. through September. On the tour, you will see and learn about the architecture of legendary Earl Young, the bridges that have helped make Charlevoix famous, Pine River Channel, East Park, Charlevoix lighthouse and the Harsha House Museum.  

Not only will the tours be educational, entertaining, and out in the fresh Northern Michigan air, they also support the continuation of historical awareness in Northern Michigan. The cost of the tour is $14/adult and $12/child, and a portion of the ticket sales goes to the Charlevoix Historical Society. The tour is approximately 1 ½ hours in length, and begins at the Beaver Island Boat Company offices. Sunscreen, comfortable shoes, and a camera are must-haves during this walk back through time.

To reserve a spot on a Charlevoix Historic Walking Tour, please contact the BIBCO office at 888.446.4095.

Petoskey Concerts in the Park

Here in Northern Michigan, we think that everything– food, parties, movies, and especially music– is better outside. Little embodies this tradition as well as Petoskey’s Charlotte Lee Ross Concerts in the Park. Now in it’s 32nd season, the series brings free musical performances to Petoskey’s Pennsylvania Park Gazebo every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday at 12:15 p.m. Take picnic supplies to dine al fresco while you enjoy the day’s performers, you’ll be spending the afternoon in true Northern Michigan style.

For a complete schedule of performances visit or call the Crooked Tree Arts Center at  231.347.4337

Petoskey Area Farmers Markets

The perfect place to stock up on the freshest picnic food is one of the Petoskey area’s Farmer’s Markets. Head to these farm-to-table agricultural bazaars to taste fruit and vegetables that will put store-bought produce to shame, homemade bread, jams, jellies, and baked good, and above all, the chance to rub elbows with the farmers themselves for a little local culture.  Visit any of these markets, all located quite near Petoskey.

Boyne City Farmers Market

June 8th – October 31st, 2012 Wednesday and Saturday
8 am to Noon Veteran’s Park

Harbor Springs Farmers Market

June 16th – September 1st, 2012 Wednesday and Saturday
9 am to 1 pm Main Street – Harbor Springs

For more information, call 231.330.5575

Petoskey Downtown Farmers Market

June 22nd – September 28th, 2012 Fridays
8:30 am to 12:30 pm
400 block of Howard St. between Mitchell St. and Michigan St. 231.347.4150

Stroll the Streets

Boyne City

June 15th – August 31st, 2012

Every Friday night, Stroll the Streets of downtown Boyne City! From 6 until 9 p.m., live musicians, performing artists, and refreshment vendors will take over Boyne City’s main drag. Listen, taste, and see the best of Boyne City summertime!

Petoskey Rocks!

June 22nd – August 17th, 2012

6 pm to 9 p.m.

Downtown Petoskey

Petoskey Rocks is a new series of summertime events scheduled for Fridays in downtown Petoskey, changing every week to keep things fresh and fun for everyone. Additionally, there will be a community movie in the park at the end of each Friday evening-a free film under the stars being the perfect way to end an evening of food, live music, and activities. Though the schedule may be subject to small changes, this is what is generally on tap for summer in Petoskey.

June 29 – Rock your Community –  Stores will host local non-profit and community organizations which will explain and demonstrate their individual missions and the contributions they make to our entire community

July 6 – Artists Rock! – Stores will host artists from the Petoskey area  who will explain and demonstrate their talents, artwork and methods (and the deep, dark secrets of their creations) so you can get to know these cultural leaders of our town.

July 13 – Microbrew Tasting – Petoskey bars and restaurants will present their favorite local microbrews that add  to our local hometown flavor and entertainment. This event will also include additional activities for the entire family.

July 20 – Rockin’! Trunk Show — Merchants from throughout Downtown Petoskey are bringing their best major suppliers to our town all on the same night so they can show off their latest products that help make Downtown Petoskey one of America’s best places to shop (and window shop).

July 27 – Winetasting – Downtown Petoskey’s best and most entertaining restaurants and wine shops will be offering samples of their most fascinating and unusual wines.  This event will also include additional activities for the entire family.

August 3 – Rock the Past – Come Downtown and learn about our history.  Take an historic tour and learn about the past lives of our historic buildings.

August 10 – Rock! the Future – This week Downtown celebrates the talent and energy of our youth.  The evening will include performances and demonstrations of all sorts.

August 17 – Car Show – We have been tracking down the car clubs and individuals with most unusual and fascinating automobiles from all around this car crazy state and beyond.  Expect a collection of vehicles especially selected to please the unique tastes and interests of Petoskey’s local residents and summer visitors.

More information at!

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