Loading Events

Port Oneida Fair at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

  • This event has passed.


August 7, 2015 @ 10:00 am
August 8, 2015 @ 4:00 pm
Event Category:


Lisa Griebel


Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
9922 West Front Street
Empire, MI 49630 United States

Each year near the beginning of August, you can take a step back in time at the Port Oneida Fair and experience life as it was in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. Imagine the life of the pioneers as you help bale hay or watch a broom-maker at work. Learn about spinning, basket weaving, soap making, butter making, candle dipping, and fur trapping. Listen as park rangers and local history experts share the area’s history. Watch as teams of oxen and horses cut, load, and haul hay and artists and craftsmen demonstrate their skills.

The fair is held at 6 of the historic farmsteads in Port Oneida. Each farm has a variety of artists, crafts, food, and activities for visitors. Click on the farm names below to see what’s happening at each farm. A shuttle bus runs between the farms on a regular schedule during the fair, so you can park your car and easily get around to the different venues.

Dechow Farm
Kelderhouse Farm
Burfiend Barn
Olsen Farm
Thoreson Farm

The Port Oneida Fair is a zero waste event. By partnering with Bay Area Recycling for Charities, the National Lakeshore has gone “green” and composts or recycles all materials possible throughout the fair. Special bins are placed at each site. In order to reduce what is being put into a landfill, compostable service ware is used.

On Friday, August 7, Preserve Historic Sleeping Bear is planning a Chicken BBQ. For more information, please contact Preserve Historic Sleeping Bear at www.phsb.org.

A Star Party will close out the two-day fair on Saturday, August 8, 9:00-11:00 p.m. at the Thoreson Farm. Join park rangers and the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society (GTAS) to experience a form of recreation that has been enjoyed by many generations and continues today. GTAS members share their telescopes and knowledge while viewing Mars, Saturn, and the Perseid meteor shower. Learn about astronomy as it was in the 1900s. Remember to bring a flashlight for the walk back to your car.


For more information go to: www.nps.gov/slbe and search Port Oneida Fair.