With spring in full bloom, there are plenty of reasons to celebrate May in Northern Michigan! From Mother’s Day brunches to Wine Month excursions, outdoor festivals and foodie adventures, here are 30+ Northern Michigan events to explore this month. Hosting an event? Let us know! info@mynorth.com.

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May Wine Month & Food Experiences

May 13 | Spring Beer Festival | Traverse City 

Calling all Michigan beer fans! This popular brew fest will feature hundreds of fresh, local beers from some of the finest Michigan breweries, and food available for purchase. Join from 1-6 p.m. at Turtle Creek Stadium. Tickets are required for entry. 

May 19 | Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre | Curtis 

You’re invited to the Whiskey River Trailer Park Potluck! Don’t worry, you won’t need to bring anything because Granny and her crew have got it covered. Dress up in your best outfit and join the other residents. What could go wrong at a potluck? You’ll find out at this Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre event.

May 19 | Local Mushrooms & Pinot Noir Dinner | Suttons Bay 

Indulge in a wine-paired culinary experience at Black Star Farms, inspired by the best local, seasonal ingredients sourced from Northern Michigan’s finest farms.

Women with glasses of wine in Leelanau Peninsula.

Photo by Leelanau Peninsula Wine Trail

May 19-21 | Experience Leelanau | Leelanau County 

Take a tour of the breathtaking beauty of The Leelanau Peninsula Wine Trail. New this year, Experience Leelanau is a celebration honoring Michigan Wine Month and everything that makes our region special. Whether you’re a nature lover, a foodie, a music enthusiast, or simply someone who appreciates the finer things in life, this event has something for everyone.

May 25 | Morel Mushroom Wine Dinner | Petoskey 

Celebrate spring in Northern Michigan with this wine dinner at City Park Grill, featuring favorites like Morel Risotto Spring Rolls, Morel Dusted Halibut and more.

Can’t-Miss Music and Live Performances

May 5 | The Austin Stoddard Jazz Quartet | Williamsburg

The Music House Museum is welcoming The Austin Stoddard Jazz Quartet back to the stage! Students at Interlochen Arts Academy will perform original arrangements featuring the music of Bill Evans, an American jazz pianist and composer, prolific in the ‘60s and ’70s. 

May 5-6 | Comedy with Bill Bushart | Traverse City 

Head to Traverse City Comedy Club for an evening of comedy with Bill Bushart. He has performed at the prestigious Odd Ball Comedy Fest, headlined Michigan’s Brew HaHa and LaughFest in Grand Rapids.

Drew Hale Band

Photo by Drew Hale Band

May 6 | Derek Randall, Drew Hale Band and Larz Cabot | Traverse City 

You won’t want to miss this show in downtown Traverse City! It’s Derek Randall’s debut at Encore 201, so he’s teaming up with a few Northern Michigan audience favorites.

May 6 | Ben Traverse House Concert | Cadillac 

Have a relaxing evening at this house concert featuring Ben Traverse, a traditional folk singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and audio engineer with deep roots in Michigan.

May 12-13 | Comedy with Nick Leydorf | Traverse City 

Get ready to laugh! Comedian Nick Leydorf will hit the Traverse City Comedy Club stage with his quick wit and fun-loving energy. Described as “funny, adorable, and non-threatening” by one writer, he talks about his unrelatable profession in such a relatable way that audiences can’t help but laugh.

May 13 | Organist Andrew Rogers to Accompany Silent Films | Williamsburg 

Organist Andrew Rogers will perform at The Music House Museum along with the 1923 classic silent film Safety Last and the short Ask Father, starring Harold Lloyd. Safety Last is a 1923 American silent romantic-comedy film, including one of the most famous images from the silent-film era: Lloyd clutching the hands of a large clock as he dangles above moving traffic.

May 20 | Hyemin Kim’s Collaborative Recital | Williamsburg

Sit back and relax at this concert featuring Hyemin Kim, Nancy Stagnitta, Dane Philipsen and Michael Coonrod, playing All About Fantasy with music by Camille Saint-Saens, Malcolm Arnold, George Enescu, Francoise Borne, Franz Schubert and Madeleine Dring.

Outdoor & Community Events

May 6-May 28 | Guided Wildflower Hikes 

April showers bring May flowers! Experience the mark of spring in Northern Michigan with a guided hike where you will learn about early bloomers, explore different wildflower habitats and the surrounding woods. Call 248-931-9440 for location and more information.

Field of Trillium

May 12-14 | Jeep the Mac | St. Ignace 

The perfect way to celebrate spring? A trip to St. Ignace! This annual event draws Jeep enthusiasts from around the Midwest. Join in on a group ride across the Mackinac Bridge, ferry passes to Drummond Island for a Saturday of trail riding, optional street cruises and more.

May 12-14 | Mesick Mushroom Festival | Mesick

This festival is a spring must-do! The annual Mesick Mushroom Festival, located in the mushroom capital of the U.S., features a mushroom hunt, Blessing of the Jeeps, delicious local food, and activities for all ages. 

May 13 | Morel Mushroom Festival and Art in the Park | Lewiston

This morel mushroom celebration will host a slew of fun activities including mushroom hunts, art in the park, a farmers market, spring fling shopping and much more.

morel mushrooms on plate

Photo by Todd Zawistowski

May 13 | Mackinac Island Fort2Fort 5 Mile Challenge | Mackinac Island

The Mackinac Island Fort2Fort 5 Mile Challenge starts with a blast of rifles at Fort Mackinac, then takes a winding route up to Fort Holmes (the highest point on the island). All proceeds help support Mackinac Historic State Parks.

May 18-21 | National Morel Mushroom Festival | Boyne City 

Boyne City’s National Morel Mushroom Festival returns this year with special morel-inspired recipes, live entertainment, a carnival, craft show and more. 

May 22-25 | St. Ignace Car Show | St. Ignace 

This annual event is one of the largest all-make, all-model shows in the country. Get a look at hundreds of antiques, custom and celebrity automobiles, and see them in action during St. Ignace Cruise Night and the Down Memory Lane Parade. 

Mother’s Day Brunches & Events

May 13 | Bouquet Making Class | Traverse City 

Celebrate Mother’s Day at Farm Club in Traverse City with this bouquet-making class, using seasonal flowers. The experts will show you how to make the perfect bouquet with flowers of different shapes, textures and sizes.

May 14 | Mother’s Day Brunch | Glen Arbor 

This impressive brunch at Nonna’s at The Homestead takes place from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., with menu items like banana foster waffles, smoked salmon benedict, mimosas and more. Reservations are encouraged.

May 14 | Mother’s Day Brunch | Suttons Bay

Shady Lane Cellars will host a special Mother’s Day brunch, featuring fresh flower bouquets, wine, and live music by Elizabeth Landry from noon to 3 p.m. Sip on Shady Lane Cellars Sparkling Riesling or try a DIY mimosa experience with fresh ingredients.

shady lane cellars suttons bay

Photo by Beryl Striewski

May 14 | Mother’s Day Brunch | Traverse City 

Enjoy panoramic views of Grand Traverse Bay and a special brunch perfect for Mother’s Day at Aerie Restaurant. Brunch starts at 10 a.m.; reservations are required. 

May 14 | Mother’s Day Brunch | Suttons Bay 

Bring your mother, friends and loved ones to this brunch at Black Star Farms’ beautiful winery estate. Enjoy pastries, salads, spring dishes, wine and a full slate of delicious bites.  

May 14 | Mother’s Day Brunch | Harbor Springs

Treat your mother or loved ones to an unforgettable brunch and mimosa bar at the Country Club of Boyne. Whether you’re a member or not, everyone is welcome to join.

May 14 | Mother’s Day Brunch | Traverse City

Have a Mother’s Day brunch at Artisan Traverse City with a spring-inspired, 3-course prix fixe menu. Reservations are required; brunch will begin at 10 a.m. 

Memorial Day Weekend Events

May 27-28 | Arts and Crafts Show | Tawas City

Explore local and handmade items from over 100 vendors at this Memorial Day Arts and Craft Show in Tawas City. The show starts at 10 a.m. and will be located in the recently renovated Shoreline Park, positioned along Lake Huron.

marathon runners

Photo by TCTC Bayshore Marathon

May 27 | Bayshore Marathon | Traverse City 

The Bayshore Marathon, Half Marathon and 10K has become a Memorial Day Weekend tradition for running enthusiasts who want to experience the beauty of the Grand Traverse region and Old Mission Peninsula. 

May 27 | Made in Cheboygan Craft Show | Cheboygan

Support local crafters and small businesses at Made in Cheboygan, featuring a large assortment of goods such as jewelry, home decor, pottery, clothing, toys, kitchen essentials, custom-printed shirts and more.

May 27 | Houghton from the Ground Festival | Houghton

Celebrate the coming of spring in the Keweenaw! This Houghton-based event will host local food, arts vendors and live music from local musicians, all held in partnership with Ride the Keweenaw. The festival starts at noon at Houghton’s Waterfront Pier.

May 27 | Michigan Beer and Brat Festival | Thompsonville

The 16th annual Michigan Beer and Brat Festival at Crystal Mountain offers live music while you sample an array of Michigan microbrews, meads, hard ciders, wine, liquor and gourmet brats. General admission begins at 4 p.m.

beer in a glass

May 27 | Native American Festival | St. Ignace 

The 2023 Native American Festival will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Museum of Ojibwa Culture in St. Ignace, recognizing and celebrating the rich culture and contributions of the area’s Anishinaabe people. During the festival, you can go on a guided museum and grounds tour with a cultural interpreter or a historic walking tour with a local historian.

Photo(s) by Grand Traverse Resort and Spa