Spring fever is in full swing here in our awesome little mitten! Not only is the weather practically perfect but there are also some exciting events coming up this month that will get you out and about during this beautiful spring season. The flowers are alive, the sun is shining, and it’s time for our April Events Roundup.
FestiFools: Ann Arbor, April 3
Celebrating its 10th anniversary, FestiFools is a huge public street art parade that was created by U of M students. This local tradition is the kick-off for Ann Arbor’s festival season and features huge, bizarre looking, human-powered paper mache puppets. Each puppet is created by a local artist or Ann Arborite wanting to show off their creative talents. For one hour you can join the thousands that flock to this free, spectacular event. For more info check out the event page here!
All Things Detroit: Eastern Market, Detroit, April 3
All Things Detroit is back at the Eastern Market! Flooding with local businesses, this is the perfect place to find those hidden gems of Detroit. Attendees will be able to sample a variety of different foods and desserts from local food vendors. They also have to opportunity to discover the creatively innovative wares of local retailers and artists. Along with all the shopping there will be contests, face painting, live entertainment, a photo booth, and door prizes for the first 300 attendees. This event is family-friendly with tickets for children under 12 years of age being free of charge. Tickets will be available at the door or for purchase online.
Capital City Film Festival: Lansing, April 6-10
The CCFF is a multimedia showcase of indie films and live bands. This four day event celebrates artists from around the world while also promoting and building cultural diversity in Michigan’s capital city, Lansing. The schedule isn’t up on the CCFF website yet but if you know you want to attend you can already purchase all-access tickets here. If you’re interested in how Lansing puts on the festival, there are volunteer opportunities too!
16th Annual YMCA of Marquette Run/Walk: Marquette, April 16
Here’s an event perfect for everyone who loves the outdoors. The YMCA of Marquette County has hosted this family-friendly, fitness run/walk for the last 16 years. This event caters to runners of every pace. They offer a 10 mile, 10k, and 5k for adult runners; 5K non-competitive walk; one-mile youth run; and a toddler trot. The course starts and finishes at the YMCA in a path that runs along Michigan’s largest Great Lake, Lake Superior. You can register at the YMCA of Marquette County or online here!
15th Annual Founders’ Black Party: Grand Rapids, April 16
Every year Founders Brewing Co. hosts the Black Party to celebrate their renowned experimental black beers. These brews are crowd favorites and a staple of the Founders’ tap. Craft beer fans can enjoy Founders’ latest dark porters, black IPAs, and stouts at this celebration. Live entertainment begins at 5pm and there will be special dishes for attendees that are designed just for the event to compliment each brew. Tickets are only sold at the door. Admission gets you a commemorative pint glass and your first pint of any Class 1 beer free. Find more info here!
Big Screen Cuisine “Eat Drink Man Woman”: Grand Rapids, April 17
Join the Grand Rapids Downtown Market and Urban Institute of Contemporary Art (UICA) for another night of cooking and an award winning movie. This month attendees will participate in a wok-cooking class before heading to the UICA to watch Director Ang Lee’s foodie-flick “Eat Drink Man Woman”. It is a 1994 Taiwanese film about the life and adventures of Master Chef Chu who lives at home with his three unmarried daughters. More details and ticket info are available here!
“Slide into Spring” Traverse City Ale Trail: Traverse City, April 23
Join the “Slide into Spring” TC Ale Trail for a delicious afternoon that your tastebuds will certainly thank you for. All six Traverse City breweries featured in the event will prepare a slider and beer pairing for attendees to try new flavors and discover some of the finest brews Traverse City has to offer. Breweries participating in the event include The Filling Station Microbrewery, Right Brain Brewery, Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales, North Peak Brewing Company, Rare Bird Brewpub, and The Workshop Brewing Company. Tickets are available here and include a tasting glass, tasting tokens, map, and a voting ballot to choose your favorite brewery.
Vermontville Maple Syrup Festival: Vermontville, April 22-24
Vermontville’s original maple syrup festival is the perfect kid-friendly event for you and your family. With a talent show, arts and crafts, flea market, two parades, petting zoo, princess pageant, games, a pancake derby, fireworks and other free entertainment, there is plenty to do for everyone at this fun-filled festival. And there will certainly be no shortage of syrup at this celebration. Vendors will be selling their countless varieties of this sweet nectar as well as maple syrup covered apples and flavored cotton candy. For more info check out their website here!
Bringin’ Back the 80’s: Frankenmuth, April 22-23
Travel to Frankenmuth and back in time to celebrate the music, trends, and culture of the 1980s. Now is the time to shake out that dusty pair of stonewashed jeans and bright pink scrunchies, tease your hair, and get all of your friends together for a weekend of throwback. There will be live cover bands, a best dressed contest, a huge display of 80’s memorabilia, a breakdancing show, and more. Friday is open to all ages but Saturday is 21+ only. Proceeds from this event will be donated to numerous charities that support families and individuals with cancer as well as the fight for the cure. You can get your tickets here!
Jeep The Mac: Drummond Island, April 22-23
Do you have immense pride for your Jeep? Well, now is your chance to show it! Hosted by St. Ignance, this ride across the “Mighty Mackinac Bridge” will give proud Jeep owners the chance to show up all those “Mini-Coopers, ATVS and farm tractors” that crowd the bridge. This full day event will also feature trail excursions, lunch on Drummond Island, giveaways, live music, and more. The only catch is that you must register your vehicle in advance. You can do that and purchase tickets here!
Spring Sip & Savor: Leelanau Peninsula, April 30-May 1
Here at The Awesome Mitten, we recommend wrapping up your April and kicking off your May on the small peninsula of Leelanau. Leelanau Peninsula invites you to enjoy delicious wine and food pairings at 23 of their best wineries along their wine trail. Their self-guided tour allows you to visit all of the tasting rooms in any order you may desire. With each ticket sale, there will be a $5 donation to the Bruce Simpson Winemakers Scholarship to help students that are seeking a career in viticulture or enology in Northern Michigan. Get your tickets today!
Have an event you would like us to consider for a future roundup post? Submit it here.