Each summer since 1968, Traverse City has dedicated eight days to the celebration of one of its most famous and tasty commodities: the cherry (though they’ve been holding informal blessings of the blossom since 1910!). National Cherry Festival 2018, June 30–July 7, will be a week filled with live music, good eats, local wine, an incredible air show and a whole lot of cherries. Here’s everything you need to plan your Cherry Festival vacation.
Much of the festival’s energy stems from the live music that pours from the stage just beside the West Grand Traverse Bay. This year’s concert line-up includes Dan + Shay, Pat Benatar, Sheryl Crow, and more. Here’s your guide to National Cherry Festival concerts.
Be sure to pack your appetite before heading to National Cherry Festival 2018. The week begins with a pancake breakfast and will hardly slow down until the festival’s last moments. Farmers markets and food trucks line the streets, while barbecues and picnics pave their way into each day. Be sure to pace yourself—you won’t want to miss a bite! Here’s your guide to National Cherry Festival food events.
Keeping the whole family happy and entertained is a breeze. With hands-on arts and crafts, pie eating contests, parades and pet shows, it’ll be no trouble at all to pass the time until the orchard tour or airshow. The kids will be fast asleep in bed after long days of fun they’ll remember for years to come. Here’s your guide to National Cherry Festival family events.
U.S. Coast Guard Open Ramp, Friday, June 29, 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Air Show with the Blue Angels, Saturday, June 30, 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Air Show with the Blue Angels, Sunday, July 1, 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Is it time for a date night? Ladies night out? Time to just sit back, cool down, and have a drink? Between the beer tent, adults-only pie eating contests, and wine tasting tours, the National Cherry Festival buzzes with limitless adults-only fun. Here’s your guide to National Cherry Festival adults-only events.
Cherry Festival Lodging
Need a place to stay while you enjoy the Cherry Festival? We’ve got you covered. Here are some comfortable places at various price points. (And here are some cool nearby towns with awesome hotel options if you want to stay outside of Traverse City.)
- Best Western Four Seasons, 305 Munson Ave., Traverse City
- Bayshore Resort, 833 E. Front St., Traverse City
- Brio Beach Inn, 1465 US 31 N, Traverse City
- Cherry Tree Inn and Suites, 2345 US 31 N, Traverse City
- Grand Traverse Resort and Spa, 100 Grand Traverse Village Blvd., Acme
- Pinestead Reef Resort, 1265 US 31 N, Traverse City
For more hotel information and suggestions, visit MyNorth’s hotel directory.
Parking and Public Restrooms
You’ll find parking at the Larry C. Hardy Parking Deck located on Front and State Streets, as well as in a number of public lots scattered about the city. (Here’s your complete parking/restroom guide with links to Google Maps.)
Public restrooms will be available at the following locations:
- Clinch Park – 181 E. Grandview Pkwy.
- Traverse City Visitor Center – 101 W. Grandview Pkwy.
- Chamber of Commerce – 202 E. Grandview Pkwy.
- Great Lakes Bath & Body – 110 E. Front St.
- Espresso Bay – 202 E. Front St.
- Milk & Honey – 240 E. Front St.
- Morsels Espresso & Bakery – 321 E. Front St.
- BATA Transit Center – 115 Hall St.
Open Space Park Rules
- Pets are not allowed in the Open Space Park during festival week.
- No alcoholic beverages are allowed in the Open Space Park except in the Festival Beverage Pavilion and the Beer Tent. Special festival events, including wine-tasting, are also an exception.
- Smoking is prohibited in the park.
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Cornerstone: National Cherry Festival 2018