From can’t-miss Thanksgiving dinners (both in-person and to-go!) to tree lightings and parades to kick off the holiday season, here are the Northern Michigan events you won’t want to miss, specially curated by our Office Manager, Libby Stallman. Hosting a local event? Let us know!

This is a web original article from the team at MyNorth Media and Traverse Northern Michigan. Want to read recent print stories? View our print subscription and digital subscription options and have Traverse delivered to your door or inbox each month.

Local To-Go & In-Person Thanksgiving Dinners

November 17 | Beaujolais Nouveau Day Dinner | Northport
Join fellow wine lovers around the world in celebrating a bountiful harvest at Willowbrook Mill during this special fall wine dinner. Learn more about this event and get your tickets here.

November 23 | Thanksgiving To-Go on Old Mission | Traverse City
If you’re looking forward to enjoying Thanksgiving at home, Boathouse is offering a full Thanksgiving dinner to-go. View the full menu for the two-person and four-person dinner options.

November 23 | Thanksgiving To-Go in TC | Traverse City
Grab dinner to-go this Thanksgiving with Park Place Hotel & Conference Center’s turkey dinner deal. All profits benefit Safe Harbor and the dinner for four includes all of the classic fixings ready to heat and eat.

park place thanksgiving turkey dinner

Photo by Park Place Hotel and Conference Center

November 24 | Thanksgiving Dinner Buffet | Acme
This year let someone else to prepare Thanksgiving dinner and entertain the family! Visit Aerie Restaurant & Lounge for their popular Thanksgiving Dinner Buffet. 

November 24 | Thanksgiving at Weathervane | Charlevoix
Bring your family to a picturesque corner of Northern Michigan for Thanksgiving at the Weathervane Restaurant in Charlevoix. Be a part of a special dinner celebration and give thanks for your families, neighbors, and friends with a delicious and satisfying three-course a la carte menu.

November 24 | Thanksgiving at Shanty Creek | Bellaire
Let Lakeview Restaurant at Shanty Creek do the cooking and cleaning! Featuring roast turkey, orange glazed ham, slow-roasted prime rib, mashed potatoes, sage dressing, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes, macaroni and cheese, cornbread pudding and more. Includes a selection of fine pastries and pies for dessert.

November 25 | Pizza & Pipes | Williamsburg
A popular event, Pizza and Pipes, returns to the Music House Museum! Enjoy a gourmet pizza dinner as Organist Dave Calendine plays a concert on the “Mighty Wurlizter” theater organ. Learn more about this event and get your tickets.

November 26 | Deck The Walls Gala | Upper Peninsula
Celebrate the holidays at this Upper Peninsula gala, featuring a silent auction, appetizers, cocktails and great company at Erickson Center for the Arts Deck the Walls Gala. Learn more about this event and get your tickets here.

Wreath on the door of Erickson Center for the Arts

Photo by Erickson Center for the Arts

Squash on a tray

Photo by Courtney Kent

Can’t-Miss Thanksgiving Events in Northern Michigan

November 18 | Ladies’ Opening Night | Petoskey
Kick-off your holiday season with friends by shopping for yourself and those you love. Stores stay open late and there will be Downtown Dollar prizes to win.

November 19 | Tree Lighting | Traverse City
Ready for a night of pure holiday joy? Enjoy the tree lighting, Santa’s house and light parade, all taking place in downtown Traverse City.

Traverse City Tree Lighting

Photo by Dave Weidner

November 23 | Annual Walloon Lake Village Lighting | Walloon Lake
Enjoy live performances from the Petoskey Steel Drum Band, live reindeer, and a special visit from Santa & Mrs. Claus. Bring a donation for Toys for Tots and shop at local vendors to find gifts for everyone on your list. Enjoy free hot chocolate, kids’ activities, and a cash bar available from 5 to 8 p.m.

November 24 | Ore Dock Laser Light Show | Marquette
This Thanksgiving weekend through December, embrace the festive spirit in Downtown Marquette. Watch as they merge local history with modern technology and put on a laser light show at the iconic Lower Harbor Ore Dock in Marquette.

November 24 | Turkey Trot | Traverse City
Happy Thanksgiving! The 15th annual Traverse City Turkey Trot race involves plenty of family and friends (furry ones too) creating great memories and traditions.

November 25 | Tree Lighting | Charlevoix
Join your friends and family at the Holiday Parade & Tree Lighting Celebration from 3 to 6 p.m. in downtown Charlevoix!

November 25 & 26 | Pajama Party & Holiday Events | Leland
Celebrate the holidays with pajama party shopping in Fishtown on Friday followed by “Light Up Leland” for the holidays on Saturday! Enjoy the holiday lights at the Christmas tree corner, down Main Street, to the Village Green.

November 25 & 26 | Charming North Artisan & Vintage Market | Cadillac
This market features 16 booths of amazing artwork, locally made goods and hand-crafted items. The market is located indoors in the newly renovated event space, The North Room, and is connected to Charming North, Downtown Cadillac.

November 26 | Holiday Illumination | Alden
The Alden Holiday Illumination and Open House takes place from 5:30-7:30 to celebrate the holiday season!

November 26 | Holiday in the Village | Suttons Bay
Enjoy a Family Day & Holiday Stroll in the village of Suttons Bay. Festivities include caroling on the corner, Santa arriving via fire truck, story time with Mrs. Claus, tree lighting, mailing letters to Santa, gifts from Santa, extended business hours and more!

Downtown Suttons Bay shops

Photo by Dave Weidner

November 26 | Tree Lighting + Festivities | Northport
Shoppers will find a wide array of handcrafted arts including handcrafted wood bowls, up-cycled art, jewelry, paintings, photography, pottery and more. Plus an eclectic collection of books, holiday decor, fresh wreaths and a variety of aromatherapy and herbal soaps. Buy a cup of cocoa for the kids and “special” cocoa for adults in the bar at Willowbrook Mill.

November 26 | Mingle & Jingle and Jubilee of Trees | East Jordan
Check out the lighting of the community Christmas tree, local business open houses and more. The Jubilee of Trees will take place at The Boathouse on Lake Charlevoix and is fun for everyone. Bid on themed and decorated Christmas Trees donated by local businesses, groups and individuals. This coincides with Small Business Saturday; check out the in-store specials and deals!

Photo(s) by Courtney Kent