Detroit and Metro Area Festivals Throughout The Year

Modified: January 30, 2023 | Story by Lindsay Whitman Drewes

Festivals large and small take place throughout Metro Detroit year-round. They are a great way to immerse yourself in hobbies you love or to explore new music and culture. There’s always a party somewhere in Detroit. You just have to decide which one to go to. Check out this extensive list of some of the top extravaganzas in the Motor City.

January

Fire and Ice Festival

Fire and Ice festival is a mix of ice carving, renaissance fair acts, bonfires, and dance parties.

Anti-Freeze Blues Festival

The Ferndale Blues Festival celebrates Blues music with local and international acts.

Winterfest

Belle Isle hosts an outdoor-only event to celebrate nature in winter. Ice carving, snowshoeing, hiking, and more are some of the featured activities.

February

Plymouth Ice Festival

Downtown Plymouth is a winter wonderland as the sidewalks are lined with ice carvings. Carvers come from around the country and even the world to show off their ice-carving skills.

Winter Blast Weekend

Royal Oak hosts a family-friendly winter celebration with an ice rink, ice sculptures, marshmallow roasting, and live music.

 

Ice and Snow Fest at The Ford House

Celebrate winter with fun activities like snowshoeing, investigating snowflakes, winter tales, and more.

Winter Beer Festival

This popular event will feature hundreds of fresh, local beers from Michigan’s finest breweries, plus local music, ice sculptures and carving demonstrations, fire pits to chase away the cold, and food available for purchase.

March

Detroit Whisky Festival

The Detroit Whisky Festival features the best Whiskeys, Bourbons and Ryes from around the world. During this strolling tasting event, festival attendees can choose from a mixed cocktails or a straight taste while interacting with representatives from the most well-known and influential brands.

Detroit Whisky Festival

Brewsology Beer Fest

The Brewsology Beer Fest is the boozy hybrid of your middle school museum field trip. Taking over the Michigan Science Center after hours, the event will feature dozens of local craft breweries and cideries and will give attendees access throughout the museum including exhibits, science demonstrations and access to brewery reps.

Corktown Music Festival

The Corktown Music Festival is two days of rock, punk, and folk from over 70 acts spread over four venues benefiting 4 Paws 1 Heart.

April

Motor City Blues Festival

The show will feature performances by Blues legends Pokey Bear, King George, Calvin Richardson, Ronnie Bell, Lenny Williams, Chick Rodgers and Nellie Tiger Travis.

The Ramadan Suhoor Festival

The largest Ramadan festival in North America.

Royal Oak Bourbon Festival

This festival will feature 100+ whiskeys, VIP section and cocktail station. The majority of the list is bourbon but there will be a few non-bourbon options such as beer, wine & non-alcoholic options. In addition to the great beverage selection, we will have a food trucks, live music, vendors and more!

Jewish Film Festival

The Detroit Jewish Film Festival celebrates the art of Jewish filmmaking by presenting films, encouraging discussion about Jewish stories, and creating shared experiences with filmmakers and audiences around the world.

May

Movement Electronic Music Festival

Techno was born in Detroit. Praise and relish all electronic music.

Photo by Charles Falsetti

Royal Oak Tequila Festival

Attendees of Royal Oak Tequila Fest will be treated to samplings of the finest brands and varieties of premium and ultra-premium tequilas, as well as tequila liqueurs, crèmes, infusions, mezcals and flavored tequilas.

Great Lakes Boating Festival

The festival includes displays of new boats, antique cars and other interesting displays. The event begins with the newly revamped Wheels and Keels Summer Launch party and auction, Friday night and concludes the three-day boat show and entertainment with Raffles on a Whale and others to be announced.

June

American Polish Festival and Craft Show

This festival draws thousands of friends and families from all around Michigan, Ohio, and Illinois, and features live music and dancing.

Grosse Ile IslandFest

From its very humble beginnings at Westcroft Gardens in 1984 IslandFest has grown to be one of the largest and most well-attended festivals in the area. Annual favorites, like the TAILS auction and Jazzapalooza, have been part of the festivities for over ten years.

Royal Oak Taco Fest

Taco Fest presents a carefully crafted entertainment lineup that’s appealing to all ages. The event will feature some of the regions’ most impressive musical talent line-ups with a range of musical genres and styles performing all day that will please any crowd.

Bay-Rama Fishfly Festival

The Bay-Rama Fishfly Festival is a fun-filled five-day event attended by over 50,000 people in downtown New Baltimore.

Detroit Pride Festival

Motor City Pride is Michigan’s largest pride celebration with over 40,000 participants in our pride events. We are an entirely volunteer-run organization with a mission of spreading awareness through pride.

Motor City Pride by Chelc Stowers

Backwoods and Bonfires Music Festival

Backwoods and Bonfires is the fastest growing Music Festival in the midwest, featuring amazing performances from national acts, as well as, emerging local talent across various genres.

July

Hotter Than July

Celebrating Detroit’s Black LGBTQ+ community in July. It’s the world’s second-oldest Black LGBTQ+ Pride event and features a safe place to educate and celebrate.

Mo Pop Festival

Mo Pop Festival is a music festival open to all ages.

Photo by Bill Bowen

Detroit’s Black Wallstreet

Detroit’s Black Wallstreet is a community event highlighting Black-owned businesses.

Arab and Chaldean Festival

The Arab and Chaldean Festival of Detroit has hosted an array of artists from all over the Middle Eastern community within the past few years. Each year, our guests enjoy a wonderful display of showcases by numerous artists.

Art In The Park

Over 400 artists from across the country come to Plymouth to be a part of Michigan’s second largest art festival.

Czech & Slovak Festival

The Czech & Slovak festival features live entertainment, ethnic food, imported beers, vendors, and displays.

DeBuck’s Lavender Festival

Enjoy lavender and sunflower fields, art classes, and fantastic photo ops at DeBuck’s Lavender Festival.

Greektown Heritage Festival

Head to Greektown at the end of July to celebrate Greek culture. Live music, traditional Greek dancers, and delicious Greek food are part of the festival.

African World Festival

African World Festival is one of the largest educational programs in Detroit. It is also the largest ethnic festival in Detroit and family oriented too.

Wyandotte Street Art Fair

Over 200,000 visitors, 200 fine artists, 25 restaurants, and a multitude of local merchants. As one of the largest art fairs in the State of Michigan, the 62nd Wyandotte Street Art Fair scheduled for July 12th -15th 2023, attracts fine artists from across the state, region and nation to showcase their work, offering a local platform to expand community awareness of the creative arts.

August

Ribs and R&B Music Festival

Local BBQ experts come together with R&B and Soul artists for a memorable summer experience.

A Taste of Greece Cultural Festival

Enjoy Greek culinary treasures, music and dancing at A Taste of Greece Cultural Festival.

Water Lantern Festival

Decorate a lantern and light up the water as hundreds drift off, a sign of peace and unity. It’s deemed the #1 Cultural Festival.

Charivari Detroit Music Festival

Charivari Detroit will first and foremost be a celebration of Detroit and it’s contributions to electronic dance music. Techno is a Detroit creation and Detroit is flush with the pioneers and present day masters of the genre.

Belle Isle Art Fair

The Belle Isle Art Fair is a beautiful fine art show across from the stunning Scott Fountain in the heart of Detroit’s island park

Oakland County WitchFest

A weekend full of witchy fun things, readings, vendors, healers, education and more!

Detroit Lyte Sky Lantern Festival

Lyte is a simple yet unique Sky Lantern Experience like no other. With Lyte Sky Lantern Festivals across the United States you don’t have to travel far to experience this magical moment.

Buy Michigan Now Festival

Buy Michigan Now is a campaign dedicated to highlighting Michigan-based businesses and positively promoting the state on a local, national, and global level.

September

Detroit Jazz Festival

Detroit Jazz Festival is the world’s largest free jazz festival.

Detroit Jazz Festival

Detroit Jazz Festival, Jason Vaughn

Hamtramck Labor Day Festival

With one stage, booths from a number of restaurants and a full line-up of carnival rides, there’s never a dull moment at the Hamtramck Labor Day Festival.

Art & Apples Festival

The 30-acre Rochester Municipal Park turns into one of the nation’s top fine arts fairs with over 200 artists, food trucks, live entertainment, and more.

Michigan Renaissance Festival

From August through October, Oakland County hosts over 100 artisans and 17 stages of Renaissance entertainment.

Parktoberfest

Enjoy a big Biergarten tent, an impressive selection of craft seasonal and Oktoberfest biers, fall food favorites, live music, kids activities, traditional games, dance, and competitions.

JAM3A – Outdoor Music & Arts Festival

This can’t-miss 4-day experience will feature musical performances by renowned Arab artists and a curated virtual vendor market showcasing small artisan businesses.

2023 American Speed Festival

The American Speed Festival presented by Comerica Bank takes place at the 87-acre M1 Concourse located in Pontiac, Michigan, right in the backyard of the Motor City, Detroit. This event combines some of the most renowned brands in automotive performance history, in everything from vintage Indy cars and historic stock cars to modern-day supercars. This is a rare opportunity to see race cars from every era perform on the 1.5-mile M1 Concourse Speed Ring.

Dally in the Alley

Dally In The Alley is one of Detroit’s longest-running events. This festival is a neighborhood celebration of local musicians, artists, restaurants, vendors and people of all sorts.

October

Michigan Brewers Guild Detroit Fall Beer Festival

Enjoy great beer from Michigan brewers at the Eastern Market.

Beer pour from a tap

Bourbon & Brews Festival

Head to Bowers School Farm in Bloomfield Hills to try 150+ kinds of bourbon, whiskey, beer, wine, and cocktails.

Boathouse Beer Festival – Belle Isle Detroit

Enjoy a sampling of great brews and help raise money to restore the Belle Isle Boathouse.

Pig & Whiskey Festival

For 13 years, Pig & Whiskey has brought to downtown Ferndale an insanely delicious combination of music, food, drink, and best of all, people.

November

SKULL Detroit’s Gothfest

Glorify everything Goth in Detroit.

Festival of Trees — Downtown Rochester, MI

Kick off the Christmas season in Rochester with gorgeous trees and wreaths, kids’ crafts, and even a visit from Santa.

Royal Oak Vodka Festival

Attendees can meet brand ambassadors that will offer their unique descriptions and insight on many different products, and food available for purchase with a live musical performance.

Chanu-Con! Chanukah Festival

Featuring delish kosher food, children’s activities, raffles, gifts, music, and more!

December

WinterFUN Festival

The WinterFUN Festival is a great opportunity for families to come together to participate in several activities. There is a Gallery of Ice with live ice carving competition, a petting farm with adorable animals, live Santa reindeer, s’mores and much, much more.

 

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