10 Place-Based Holiday Activities in Michigan

Written by Lisa Assenmacher, Communications and Training Specialist

Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza or some combination of many holidays, it is a time of year where the hustle and bustle is in high gear and the holiday spirit is shining. People exchange gifts and laughs, holiday parties are constant and many people take time off to spend with family and friends.

Photo copyright David Marvin.

Placemaking initiatives have enhanced the unique culture, geography and personality of places across Michigan. This holiday season, we encourage you to discover fun, local events that support the uniqueness of which Michigan is made. Discovering new places or what your own hometown has to offer helps to build a sense of place while supporting a local economy. Who doesn’t want to live in a fun place?

Here are 10 wonderful ways to enjoy the holidays and explore your community:

1. See the Official State of Michigan Christmas Tree at the Capitol Building in Lansing.

2. Ice skate in Downtown Detroit at Campus Martius.

3. Enjoy the Bavarian experience in Frankenmuth, including lights and holiday shops.

4. The Frederick Meijer Gardens in Grand Rapids features a world of winter magic celebrating Christmas traditions around the world.

Farm by Lantern Light, Grayling. (Photo from City of Grayling www.grayling-mi.com)

5. Farm by Lantern Light in Grayling is a full evening activity including a sleigh ride, a visit to the historic farm and a full length play all rolled into one.

6. Walk around and experience the winter Zoo Lights in zoos across Michigan, including Binder Park Zoo in Battle Creek, Potter Park Zoo in Lansing and the Detroit Zoo.

7. Take in the beautiful views of the Soo from 210 feet in the air at the top of the Tower of History in Sault Ste Marie.

8. Take in a lantern lit ski or snowshoe trail. With no shortage of parks across the state, the beautiful Porquipine Mountains offers one unique opportunity to take in nature.

Light up the Soo (Photo from saultstemarie.com)

9. Embrace arts and culture with a play, musical, concert or story-telling. The Nutcracker Ballet is at the Ramsdell Theatre in Manistee. The Detroit Theatre has a full list of holiday show including the Trans Siberian Orchestra, The Great Russian Nutcracker and a Christmas Carol. Stories will be read in Leland. Holiday concerts will be performed by the

Flint Symphony Orchestra, and a variety of up north locations  to name a couple.

10. Watch holiday classic movies at the Historic Michigan Theatre in Ann Arbor.

These are just a few ideas.  What else are you planning to do in your community this holiday season?

Happy Holidays to you and yours, and we for a safe and healthy 2015!