It’s the kick-off to summer, so make it count with these 10 things to do with kids on Northern Michigan Memorial Day weekend.
Fly a Kite at Traverse City’s Open Space
On Memorial Day or any fair weather windy day, you’ll find the air space over Traverse City dotted with the bright colors of kites aloft. Follow their strings to earth and you’ll find most end at the Open Space—a huge grassy area on the edge of West Grand Traverse Bay in downtown Traverse City. But there are other spots fit for flying in Petoskey and Sleeping Bear Dunes. Here’s a list of where you can fly with your feet on the ground and where to purchase your flying ship (okay, kites).
Rescue Wild Flowers
Get the kids involved in gardening and ecology at the same time by going to the wild flower plant sale in Leland. Here’s more info.
Raven Hill Discovery Center hosts Hands-On Holiday for Memorial Day Weekend
Enjoy projects and outings for the whole family with indoor hands-on exhibits and exotic animal session, as well as outdoor exhibits at this East Jordan discovery center. Check out more on the Raven Hill Discovery Center.
Friday Fireworks with the Beach Bums
Enjoy professional baseball from the Frontier League at Wuerfel Park. The Beach Bums face the Windy city Thunderbolts. Gates open at 6:05pm; game at 7:05 pm. On Friday, May 23rd, fireworks will light up the sky following the game. Berm Seating: $6 adult, free for kids 3 & under. Here are the details for attending the Beach Bums game.
Native American Festival at the Museum of Ojibwa Culture in St. Ignace
Experience History! Come and honor the first Native Americans and the Anishinaabe culture in a historic celebration of traditional drumming, dancing, food, music and cultural demonstrations on the Museum of Ojibwa Culture grounds in St. Ignace on Memorial Day Weekend. The day will begin with a Sunrise Ceremony at 6:30 a.m. on the Kiwanis Beach (across the street from the Museum). Cultural demonstrations include Brain Tanning, Black Ash Basket Making, Quill Work Demonstration, and more! For more on the Native American Festival.
Be a Blacksmith at the Samels Family Heritage Farm
The objective of this program is to introduce the basic skills of blacksmithing and provide a hands-on early 1900’s view of a farm blacksmith shop. Participate in fire building; heating steel; shaping bending and twisting techniques; cutting techniques; high carbon steel heat treating techniques. All participants go home with a hand forged item(s) that they made. Please bring safety glasses, older clothes and sensible shoes. A donation for the class is $35; all proceeds go to the restoration and preservation of the Samels Farm by the Samels Family Heritage Society. Here’s how to register to be a blacksmith for the day.
Take a Trip that Withstands Time
Nestled in a fairy tale setting, the beautifully preserved, charming wharf town of historic Glen Haven was a lumbering village over a century ago and is now the perfect Memorial Day destination for your family. Exceptionally restored to its early 1900s heritage, Glen Haven is home to a blacksmith shop where guests can see how iron is heated and forged into useful tools and parts. The Cannery Boathouse Museum displays the largest public exhibit of Great Lakes small craft in Michigan, and the Glen Haven General Store and Ranger Station, which sells items and information relating to the history of the area, is fully operational. See more fun summer things to do in Sleeping Bear Dunes here, although it may be a little cool for some of these.
Northwestern Michigan Orchid Society Show
Take a trip to the tropics at The Northwestern Michigan Orchid Society’s “Orchids By The Bay” show, held at the Grand Traverse Civic Center this coming Memorial weekend, Saturday and Sunday. The show features exotic orchids in bloom, artistic displays and educational exhibits. There is no admission but donations at the door will be welcome. Check out details for the Orchid show.
Skip Stones at the Petoskey Stone Festival
The 9th Annual Festival includes Petoskey stone hunts for prizes, Petoskey stone and Michigan gemstone vendors, kid’s fish pond and lots of great Northern Michigan foods throughout the day. Plus a stone skipping contest; Betty Dinger Memorial Award Presentation; Wings of Wonder; K-9 Demonstrations; Albo the Clown; entertainment by Tommy Tropic and music by Danny Bellenbaum. Eastport is on US-31 about 50 minutes north of Traverse City. Here’s more on the Petoskey Stone Festival.
Catch a Double Feature at the Cherry Bowl
Northern Michigan’s largest movie screen invites you back to the Cherry Bowl Drive-In Theatre where a double feature starts at dusk in Honor all summer long. All films are rated PG-13 or below (in other words, no R’s), and kids 12 and under get in for free with an accompanying adult. Read more about the 60-year heritage of family entertainment at the Cherry Bowl.