Mackinac Island Fudge Festival Returns with Family Activities, Tastings, Cocktails & More

Mackinac Island, the Fudge Capital of the World, is hosting the annual Mackinac Island Fudge Festival August 24–26. Annual fudge production is measured in tons on this tiny Northern Michigan island located in Lake Huron between Michigan’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas. An estimated 1 million people vacation here every year and Mackinac Island fudge is a big reason why.

“Mackinac Island and fudge—the place and the product have been inextricably linked for more than 75 years,” says Phil Porter, Director of Mackinac Island State Historic Parks. “Along with riding bikes, taking a carriage tour and visiting the fort, buying a box of fudge has been a must-do Mackinac Island activity since the Roaring Twenties. The success of this sweet souvenir spawned a successful industry housed in more than a dozen quaint fudge shops in the island’s small village.”

The Northern Michigan event features a number of fudge-related events and activities including fudge making demonstrations, the Great Turtle Slow Ride, fudge-inspired dinners and cocktails, the Pioneer Sugar Relay Race and Mackinac Island fudge beer tasting. “Families and kids in particular love to see how Mackinac Island fudge is made and that’s one of the treats you get with our fudge shops. The festival is geared toward kids and family complete with candy-themed games including Sugar Sack Relays and a Candy Egg Hunt,” says Bob Benser, President of the Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau.

View a complete schedule of events below.

Sugar Sake Relay Race – Photo by Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau

Mackinac Island Fudge Festival Events

FRIDAY, AUGUST 24
  • 11 a.m.–4 p.m. | Fudge making demonstrations See how the island’s most famous treat is made at island fudge shops including Ryba’s Fudge Shop, Murdick’s Fudge Shop, May’s Fudge Shop, Joann’s Fudge Shop, and Sanders Fudge Shop.
  • 4–5 p.m. | Fudge Infused Cocktail Hour, Seabiscuit Cafe Specialty cocktails including Ryba’s Fudge Martini, Salted Caramel White Russian, and Chocolate Macadamia Martini. In addition to cocktails, Seabiscuit Cafe will feature a Mackinac Island Fudge and Michigan Cherry Ice Cream Sandwich.
  • 6–8 p.m. | Market Street Open House & Art Walk Visit the art shops, bed & breakfasts, and all businesses on Market Street. Music, fudge treats, and complimentary beverages. Free event.
  • 6–8 p.m. | Children’s Magic & Music on Market Street Magic by Jamie Andress, music by Gabi Bowditch, face painting, yo-yo tricks, and lots of fun. Activities at the Community Center on Market Street.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 25
  • 11 a.m.–4 p.m. | Fudge making demonstrations See how the island’s most famous treat is made at island fudge shops including Ryba’s Fudge Shop, Murdick’s Fudge Shop, May’s Fudge Shop, Joann’s Fudge Shop, and Sanders Fudge Shop.
  • 11 a.m.–3 p.m. | Family Games at Windermere Point Games, bounce house, monster mural and more.
  • 2:30–3:15 p.m. | Ice Cream Fudge Social at Windermere Point
  • 3-3:35 p.m. | Three Men and a Tenor at Windermere Point, free concert
  • 4–5 p.m. | Fudge Infused Cocktail Hour, Seabiscuit Cafe Specialty cocktails including Ryba’s Fudge Martini, Salted Caramel White Russian, and Chocolate Macadamia Martini. In addition to cocktails, Seabiscuit Cafe will feature a Mackinac Island Fudge and Michigan Cherry Ice Cream Sandwich.
  • 7–7:45 p.m. | Three Men and a Tenor at Windermere Point, free concert
  • 8 p.m. | Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, outdoor movie at Windermere Point, Willy Wonka autographs, popcorn and movie snacks.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 26
  • 10 a.m. | First Annual Children’s Chocolate Fudge Egg Hunt at Marquette Park
  • 11 a.m.–4 p.m. | Fudge making demonstrations See how the island’s most famous treat is made at island fudge shops including Ryba’s Fudge Shop, Murdick’s Fudge Shop, May’s Fudge Shop, Joann’s Fudge Shop, and Sanders Fudge Shop.
  • 11 a.m.–2 p.m. | Family Games at Windermere Point  Great Turtle Slow Ride, Sugar Sack Relay Race, fun for everyone
  • 4–5 p.m. | Fudge Infused Cocktail Hour, Seabiscuit Cafe Specialty cocktails including Ryba’s Fudge Martini, Salted Caramel White Russian, and Chocolate Macadamia Martini. In addition to cocktails, Seabiscuit Cafe will feature a Mackinac Island Fudge and Michigan Cherry Ice Cream Sandwich.
  • 7 p.m. | Scenic Photo Hike with Heather May begins at Mackinac Outfitters, complimentary samples of fudge from May’s Fudge Shop.

Stop by the Mackinac Island Information Center, next to Carriage Tours and across from Star Line Dock #1, for more information.

—Press release provided by Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau


Mackinac Island, Michigan